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Major Arkansas courts that have kept records of genealogical value include the following:

  • Circuit courts have countywide jurisdiction over criminal cases, naturalization, and major civil cases. The Family History Library has copies of many circuit court records.
  • Chancery courts have countywide jurisdiction over equity, divorce, probates, and adoptions. The Family History Library has some chancery court records. For Pulaski County, for example, the library has copies of the records from 1839 to 1877.
  • Courts of common pleas have countywide jurisdiction over non-real estate civil matters. The Family History Library has some courts of common pleas records.
  • County courts have countywide jurisdiction over juvenile matters, taxes, claims, and county expenditures. The Family History Library has some county court records, including Pulaski County files from 1846 to 1878.
  • Justice of the peace courts have countywide jurisdiction over preliminary hearings of criminal cases and minor contract matters. The Family History Library has some justice of the peace records, such as the Pulaski County files from 1873 to 1917.
  • Original court records are kept by the clerks in each county courthouse. Copies of records at the Family History Library often date from the creation of a county to about 1900, and some indexes are available through the 1970s. Court records are also available at the Southwest Arkansas Regional Archives.

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  • This page was last modified on 18 February 2014, at 10:21.
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