I found an excellent summary of how to find U.S. land records from the Santa Clara County Historical and Genealogical Society in Santa Clara, California. The Society also has a valuable list of indexes to local Santa Clara County records. This website is an excellent example of the type of information available from local historical and genealogical societies.
This is an example of how research can proceed on the Internet. Here is a further link I found on the society webpage to the Santa Clara City Library:
Also, don't forget to search and local libraries and museums.