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Guide to Cottonwood County, Minnesota ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

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Online Records

Cottonwood County, Minnesota
Map of Minnesota highlighting Cottonwood County
Location in the state of Minnesota
Map of the U.S. highlighting Minnesota
Location of Minnesota in the U.S.
Founded May 23, 1857
County Seat Windom
Address Cottonwood County Courthouse
900 3rd Avenue
Windom, MN 56101
Phone: 507-831-5669
Phone: 507-831-1458
Cottonwood County Website


County Information

Cottonwood County, Minnesota Record Dates

Beginning Dates for Major County Records[1]
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate
1871 1871 1871 1850 1871 1871

County Courthouse

Clerk District Court has birth, marriage, death, divorce and court records from 1871.[2]


Parent County

  • 1857--Cottonwood County was created 23 May 1857 from Brown County.  County seat: Windom [3]
  • For a brief history of how Cottonwood County was named, click here.  Then select Cottonwood County.

Boundary Changes

Record Loss


Populated Places


Bingham Lake | Comfrey | Jeffers | Mountain Lake | Storden | Westbrook | Windom


Amboy Township | Amo Township | Ann Township | Carson Township | Dale Township | Delton Township | Germantown Township | Great Bend Township | Highwater Township | Lakeside Township | Midway Township | Mountain Lake Township | Rose Hill Township | Selma Township | Southbrook Township | Springfield Township | Storden Township | Westbrook Township


Neighboring Counties




Most church records are held by individual churches. For contact information, check a phone directory, such as SearchBug or Dex Knows. Some denominations are gathering their records into a central repository. For more information about these major repositories, see Minnesota Church Records.


Highwater Lutheran Church, Lamberton

  • Records of Highwater Lutheran Church, Lamberton, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at ($).[4]



The county register of deeds keeps land records once the land was transferred to private ownership. Abstracts and indexes for these records are generally available at the county courthouse.

Land records for Minnesota are listed in the Place Search of the FamilySearch Catalog under:


Local Histories

Local histories are available for Cottonwood County, Minnesota Genealogy. County histories may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories, see the wiki page section Minnesota Local Histories.





Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Cottonwood County, Minnesota Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:


Probate records may include, wills, bonds, petitions, accounts, inventories, administrations, orders, decrees, and distributions. They may include the decedent’s date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, etc. See Minnesota Probate Records for additional information.

Online Probate Records


Minnesota tax records complement land records and can be used in place of censuses before 1820 or to supplement the years between censuses. Because only persons who owned taxable property were listed, many residents were not included in tax lists. There may also be gaps of several years in the tax records of some counties. For more information, see the wiki page Minnesota Taxation.

Vital Records

Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents.

A copy or an extract of most original records can be purchased from the Minnesota State Registrar of Vital Records, the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred], order electronically online ($) or download an application for Minnesota Birth Certificate and Death Certificates Applications to mail.

See also Minnesota Vital Records or How to order Minnesota Vital Records. For information about restrictions and costs for certificates, see the CDC Where to Write for Vital Records site.

Societies and Libraries

Cottonwood Area Historical Society
P.O. Box 106
Cottonwood 56229

Cottonwood County Historical Society
812-4th Avenue
Windom 56101

Southwest Minnesota Historical Center
Social Science 141
Southwest Minnesota State University
1501 State Street
Marshall, MN 56258
Phone: (507) 537-7373

Family History Centers

Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance and free access to premium genealogical websites. In addition, many centers have free how-to genealogy classes. See Family History Center for more information. Search the online FHC directory for a nearby family history center.

Web Sites


  1. Alice Eichholz, Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, Revised ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1992), 385-403. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27rb 1992
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Cottonwood County, Minnesota page 363, At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  4. "Evangelical Lutheran Church in America: An Inventory of Selected Congregational Records of the American Lutheran Church in Minnesota at the Minnesota Historical Society," Collection Finding Aids, Minnesota Historical Society,, accessed 10 June 2013.


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  • This page was last modified on 18 November 2015, at 16:41.
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