Courthouse Research


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Courthouse Research

  1. 1. Who Do You Think You Are? Where did you come from?
  2. 2. Things to consider before you visit the Courthouse Are the records your looking for city or county record ? When was the county formed? What are the hours of operation for the courthouse? What records do they have? Which office has the records you want?
  3. 3. Getting ready for your visit Dress comfortably and wear flat shoes. You may be on you feet most of the day. Many courthouses do not allow photocopying, ask first. Bring change for copies. You may not have a place to set your laptop or plug it in it’s best to leave it in the car. Bring a pencil and lined notepad you may not be able to use a pen. A magnifying glass can be helpful in reading many old records
  4. 4. Records found at the Courthouse Land Deeds  State Land  Federal Land  Military Bounty Land Warranty Probate  Wills  Intestate Civil Court  Marriage  Divorce  Naturalzation  Lawsuit Criminel  State VS You Tax
  5. 5. What can land records show you When and where your ancestor came from. If your ancestor was married or single. At times family relationships.
  6. 6. General Index to deeds Grantor ---- Owner -- one who sells or transfers land Grantee --- Buyer -- one who receives property
  7. 7. Federal Land Deed
  8. 8. Bounty Land Land given for services rendered to the United States of America
  9. 9. Probate Did your ancestor leave a will? If not, will there be any record left behind? A will generally tells family relationships. If minor children are involved a guardian may be listed.
  10. 10. Types of Wills Holograph Will-Handwritten by testor. Nuncupative Will- Oral usually on deathbed Intestate- no will written by testor but estate settled through the court. Will are witnessed by two individuals. They may be witnessed by family members or close trusted friends.
  11. 11. Civil Court Naturalization Oath of allegiance to the United States
  12. 12. Marriage Records Name of bride and groom sometimes information on parents.
  13. 13. Divorce Records List date of marriage and all minor children.
  14. 14. Miscellaneous Court Records Coroner records Civil lawsuits Tax records Criminal Records The State vs You Bigamy, Assault, and Murder
  15. 15. Vital Records Most birth and death records will not be found at the courthouse. Many New England states kept the vital records in each individual city. In the early 1900’s the government began to require vital records to be kept at the capital of each state. For example Kansas vital records can be located at the capital building in Topeka.
  16. 16. Questions? Thank you for coming