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United States Gotoarrow.png IllinoisGotoarrow.png Marion County

Guide to Marion County Illinois genealogy. Birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

Hand and keyboard.jpg Illinois
Online Records


Marion County, Illinois
Map
Boundary map of Marion County, Illinois
Map of the U.S. highlighting Illinois
Location of Illinois in the U.S.
Facts
Founded: January 24, 1823
County Seat Salem
Courthouse
Marion County Courthouse.gif
Photo courtesy Illinois Regional Archives Depository, Illinois State Archives
Address Marion County Courthouse
101 E. Broadway
Salem, Illinois 62881
{618) 548-3400
Marion County Website

Contents

Marion County Organization

Marion County's civil records start the following years:

                                     Beginning Dates for Marion County Records
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate
1877
1823
1877
1830
1819
1823

County records are most often kept at the County Courthouse or another local repository. For further information about where the records for Marion County are kept, see the Marion County Courthouse page.

Historical Facts

Francis Marion.JPG

The county is named after "The Swamp Fox" Revolutionary War Brigadier General Francis Marion (c1732-1795).[1]


The first permanent settlers arrived in 1811, seven years prior to Illinois’s acceptance to statehood. Captain Samuel Young of Virginia and his nine year old son were traveling home to Tennessee after exploring Illinois when they made camp for winter near a local Indian tribe and just six miles southwest of Salem Township, the future county seat. The Young’s arrival hinted at quickly approaching migration swell that would be the official end of the Indian tribes who had lived in the area for centuries. From approximately 1795 to 1834, the final Indian removal west of the Mississippi river occurred leading to the disappearance of the loosely organized Illinois Confederation; Illinois lacks a Native American presence even today.[2] 

Upon spring’s arrival, Samuel returned to Tennessee and brought his wife and children back to Salem Township.[3] The Young family was soon joined by more migrants. Salem and the surrounding areas developed as people continued to migrate into the frontier. At the conclusion of the War of 1812 and with the signing of the Louisiana Purchase, the population of Illinois grew from just over 10,000 to over 50,000 as migrants rushed to settle the newly available land that was rumored to be rich in nutrients and as cheap as $1.25 per acre.[4] Although the state experienced growth, it was still heavily rural and lacked necessary markets to sustain local economies. There were enough harvests to feed one’s family and participate in small trade, but it was important to settle near rivers to have access to more distantly located markets. Since rivers were vital to trade and living, the southern portion of the state was the most densely settle area due to the close proximity to the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers.[5] 

Living on the frontier may have given settlers freedom, but it also provided great difficulties. For example, Salem, the county seat of Marion, was on the border between the forest and the open prairies that were filled with green-headed flies that tormented horses. The weather was often extreme and ranged from hot humid summers, to violent hailstorms, and bitter cold winters.[6] Additionally, settlers were met with rampant diseases, personal desolation and isolation, and other issues such as faulty land titles and high interest rates.[7] 

Marion County helped open the Illinois frontier to new settlers and growth. Although the increase in population contributed to the removal of Native Americans, it did increase trade and economic stability in the region. It remained predominantly rural with a heavy reliance on farming.

Parent County

  • 1823--Marion County was created 24 January 1823 from Fayette and Jefferson Counties.  County seat: Salem [8]

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating Illinois county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Illinois County Boundary Maps" (1790-1869) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Records Loss

For a list of record loss in Illinois counties see: Illinois Counties with Burned Courthouses

Records and Resources

Biography

Cemeteries

The Illinois Cemeteries page provides general explanations of the following online Marion County resources:

Bibliography Online Gravestone Transcriptions Cemetery Gazetteers
FamilySearch Catalog Find A Grave | national search | county list ePodunk
WorldCat USGenWeb Tombstone Transcription Project  
  Illinois Cemeteries  
  ILGenWeb  

Census

Historical populations
Census Pop.
190030,446
191035,09415.3%
192037,4976.8%
193035,635−5.0%
194047,98934.7%
195041,700−13.1%
196039,349−5.6%
197038,986−0.9%
198043,52311.6%
199041,561−4.5%
200041,6910.3%
IL Counties 1900-1990
For tips on accessing census records online, see Illinois Census.

1840 Pensioners

  • A Census of Pensioners for Revolutionary or Military Services: With their Names, Ages, and Places of Residence, as Returned by the Marshalls of the Several Judicial Districts, Under the Act for Taking the Sixth Census. Washington, D.C., 1841. FHL 973 X2pc 1840; FHL 2321; digital version at Google Books. [See Illinois, Marion County on page 187.]

Church Records

Catholic

FamilySearch has made parish records from five Belleville Diocese Catholic churches in Marion County available online. The records include first communions, confirmations, marriages, and deaths:

Court Records

Ethnic Research

African American

The following have information concerning African American research.

Genealogy

History

Local Histories


Land and Property

Original land records are held in the office of the County Recorder. See Illinois Land and Property for more information about using land records.

The following abtracts and copies of original records may be accessed through the Family History Library or the Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD) located at the Southern Illinois University (SIU) - search for Marion County records. For information on how to use IRAD see the SIU IRAD Wiki page.

Abstracts

  • Rockford Map Publishers. Land atlas & plat book retrospect: property information from the past, Marion County IL. Rockford, IL: Rockford Map Publishers, [20--]. Other libraries (WorldCat)

Copies of original records

Online Resources

Maps

Military Records

Civil War

Civil War service men from Marion County served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies or regiments that were formed from men of Marion County.

- 11th Regiment, Illinois Infantry (3 months, 1861), Company C.
- 11th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company C.
- 21st Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company G
- 22nd Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Companies C and G.
- 31st Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company K.
- 40th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company B.
- 111th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Companies A, D, E, F, G, H, I, and K.
- 115th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company E.
- 136th Regiment, Illinois Infantry (100 days, 1864), Company E.
- 152nd Regiment, Illinois Infantry (1 year, 1865), Company F.

Naturalization

Newspapers and Obituaries

Periodicals

Probate Records

Original estates and wills are held in the office of the Circuit Court Clerk. See Illinois Probate Records for more information about using probate records.

The following copies of original records may be accessed through the Family History Library or the Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD) located at the Southern Illinois University (SIU) - search for Marion County records. For information on how to use IRAD see the SIU IRAD Wiki page.

Repositories

See also a List of Illinois Archives, Libraries, Publications, Historical & Genealogical Societies

County Courthouse

County records are most often kept at the County Courthouse or another local repository. For further information about where the records for Marion County are kept, see the Marion County Courthouse page.

Family History Centers

Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD)

IRAD is a system of Illinois Regional Archives Depositories managed by the Illinois State Archives, housing the archival records of local Illinois counties, townships, municipalities and school districts. The seven Regional Depositories are housed on state university campuses scattered throughout Illinois. Southern Illinois University houses the records for Marion County.

Public Libraries

Allen Mccarthy Branch Library
1500 Case
Centralia, IL 62801
(618) 533-9625

Bryan-Bennett Library
217 W Main Street
Salem, IL 62881
(618) 548-3006

Central City Branch Library
141 N Harrison
Centralia, IL 62801
(618)533-7721

Centralia Regional Library District
515 E. Broadway
Centralia, IL 62801
(618)5325222

(Hoffman Area Branch Library
100 N. Broadway
Hoffman, IL 62250
(618)495-9955

Irvington Branch Library
500 Superior
Irvington, IL 62848
(618) 249-8243

Kinmundy Public Library
111 S. Monroe
Kinmundy, IL 62854
(618)547-3250

Patoka Public Library
210 W. Bond
Patoka, IL 62875
(618)432-5019

Sandoval Branch Library
101 N. Broadway
Sandoval, IL 62882
(618)247-3873

Social Groups Online

Societies

Genealogical Society of Southern Illinois has a page with details about its' activities.

Taxation

Vital Records

See Illinois Vital Records for more information about Vital records in Illinois. See also How to order Illinois Vital Records or order electronically online.

Vital records consist of birth, death, marriage and divorce records. Original birth and death certificates recorded until the year 1916 are kept by the County Clerk] while those recorded after 1916 are kept by the Illinois Department of Public Health with a copy to the County Clerk. Original marriage records are usually kept by the County Clerk from the establishment of the county to the present. Original divorce records are generally in the office of the Circuit Court Clerk.

The following abstracts and copies of original vital records may be accessed through online databases, the Family History Library and the Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD) located at the Southern Illinois University (SIU) - search for Marion County records. For information on how to use IRAD see the IRAD Wiki page.

Births:

Copies of Original Records

Marriages:

Online Resources

Abstracts

  • 1821-1859 Marion County Genealogical and Historical Society. Marion County, Illinois marriages, 1821–1859. Book A, B, C, book #1. Salem, Ill.: Marion County Genealogical and Historical Society, [1995]. Other libraries (WorldCat)
  • 1888-1931 Marion County Genealogical and Historical Society. Marion County, Illinois marriages : 1888-1931 book E & F - Book #2.Salem, IL Marion County Genealogical Historical Society, ©1997. Other libraries (WorldCat) FHL books 977.3794 V22m 1888-1931

Copies of Original Records

Deaths:

Online Resources

Copies of original records

Places/Localities


To see a list of places in Marion County, click on [Show], in the bar above. The preceding list of places includes incorporated cities and towns, unincorporated towns and communities, and place names that may have been used in family histories. Some have well-organized records and even have web sites. Some are simply social communities with no official records, but which may be referenced in small-town newspapers. The list is provided to help researchers identify localities within the county. As records or histories of these localities are identified, a page will be added for each of these place names.

Web Sites

References

  1. "Francis Marion," Wikipedia.
  2. John Allen, History and Families: Marion County, Illinois (Turner Publishing Company: 1995), 9-10.
  3. Dennis Sweatman, “Comparing the Modern Native American Presence in Illinois with Other States of the Old Northwest Territory,” Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society 103, no. 3/4, (Fall/Winter 2010), 252.
  4. Adam Rowe, “The Republican Rhetoric of a Frontier Controversy: Newspapers in the Illinois Slavery Debate, 1823-1824,” Journal of the Early Republic 31, no. 4 (Winter 2011): 674-675; Patricia L. Goitein, “Meet Me in Heaven: Confronting Death along the Galena Trail Frontier 1835-1855,” Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society 102, no. 3/4 (Fall/Winter 2009): 251.
  5. Adam Rowe, “The Republican Rhetoric of a Frontier Controversy: Newspapers in the Illinois Slavery Debate, 1823-1824,” Journal of the Early Republic 31, no. 4 (Winter 2011): 674-675.
  6. John Allen, History and Families: Marion County, Illinois (Turner Publishing Company: 1995), 10.
  7. Patricia L. Goitein, “Meet Me in Heaven: Confronting Death along the Galena Trail Frontier 1835-1855,” Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society 102, no. 3/4 (Fall/Winter 2009): 251.
  8. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), 196. (FHL Collection Ref Book 973 D27e 2002). WorldCat entry.

 

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  • This page was last modified on 10 October 2014, at 20:21.
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