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United States Gotoarrow.png Arkansas Gotoarrow.png Columbia County

Guide to Columbia County Arkansas genealogy. Birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

Arkansas State with State Seal.png Arkansas
Online Records

Columbia County, Arkansas
Map of Arkansas highlighting Columbia County
Location in the state of Arkansas
Map of the U.S. highlighting Arkansas
Location of Arkansas in the U.S.
Founded December 17, 1852
County Seat Magnolia
Address Columbia County Courthouse
1 Court Sq, #1;
Magnolia, AR 71753
Phone: 870.235.3774


County Courthouse

Columbia County Courthouse
1 Court Sq, #1;
Magnolia, AR 71753
Phone: 870.235.3774

County Clerk has marriage and land records from 1853, divorce and court records from 1860 and probate records. The County Library has cemetery records.[1]

Beginning years for Columbia County, Arkansas government records[2]
Birth Marriage Death Court Land Probate
1914* 1853 1914* 1860 1853 1853
*State birth and death records began in 1914. Limited compliance until 1920's


Parent County

County seat: Magnolia [3]

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating Arkansas county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Arkansas County Boundary Maps" (1813-1925) may be viewed for free at the website.

Variant Spellings

Record Loss

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


Populated Places

Neighboring Counties

Claiborne Parish, Louisiana  • Lafayette • Nevada  • Ouachita  • Union  • Webster Parish, Louisiana

Columbia CountyLafayette CountyMiller CountyHempstead CountyNevada CountyOuachita CountyCalhoun CountyDallas CountyClark CountyPike CountyHoward CountySevier CountyLittle River CountyCleveland CountyBradley CountyUnion CountyUnion ParishClaiborne ParishWebster ParishBossier ParishCaddo ParishLincoln ParishMarion CountyCass CountyBowie CountyMcCurtain CountyARColumbia.JPG

Genealogy Resources

Research Guides

African Americans

Bible Records



Church Records

Church records vary greatly, depending upon the the record keepers and beliefs of the church. They may give: a member's dates of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information, maiden name; and death date. For more information, see Arkansas Church Records.

See also Towns and Townships to find records listed at the town level in the FamilySearch Catalog.


Barges Chapel Methodist Church

  • 1820-1872 - Barges Chapel Methodist Church Baptism Index 1820-1872. Batch C586261 at FamilySearch - free.[4]
  • 1896, 1915 - Barges Chapel Methodist Church Marriage Index 1896, 1915. Batch M586261 at FamilySearch - free.[4]



Land and Property

Land and property records can 1) place an ancestor in a specific location, 2) provide economic information, 3) reveal family relationships, and more.

After land was transferred to private ownership, transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse in the form of deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, and others.

See Arkansas Land and Property for more about online collections and early Arkansas land grants and patents from the government to private ownership.

Local Histories

Local histories are available for {{{1}}} County. They may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. Click for a brief Timeline History of the county. For more about local histories, see Arkansas Local Histories.

See also Towns and Townships to find records listed at the town level in the FamilySearch Catalog.

History Timeline

Emphasis for this timeline is on events that affected migration, records, or record-keeping. Unless otherwise mentioned, the events below were gleaned from Arkansas County - The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture [1]

  • The first inhabitants of Columbia County were Native Americans.
  • 1836 - Early white settlers began arriving in significant numbers to the area only after Arkansas achieved statehood.
  • 1852 December 17 - Columbia County was created from portions of Lafayette, Hempstead, Ouachita, and Union counties.
  • 1880 and before - Relative isolation and transportation difficulties have long been a problem for Columbia County. Columbia is the only one of Arkansas’s seventy-five counties not situated on a river.
  • 1880s - The railroad led to the creation of the communities of McNeill (later McNeil) and later Waldo.
  • 1937 - The discovery of producing oil and gas fields led to positive changes almost overnight that continued into the 1950s.
  • 1943 - Columbia County voters banned the sale of beer and wine.. The county remains “dry” to this day.



Civil War

Regiments. Service men in Columbia County, Arkansas served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Columbia County, Arkansas:

- 6th Regiment, Arkansas Cavalry (Confederate) , Company E
- 19th Regiment, Arkansas Infantry (Dockery's) (Confederate)
- 33rd Regiment, Arkansas Infantry (Confederate), Companies A and G



Finding More Arkansas Newspapers Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Columbia County, Arkansas newspapers in online catalogs like:


Probate Records

Probate records of Arkansas have been kept by the probate or county courts. See Arkansas Probate Records for more information about Probate records in Arkansas, including statewide indexes.

  • Records 1849-1931 Part of: Arkansas Probate Records, 1817-1979 FamilySearch Historical Collections (Free, browse images)
    • Includes Administration bonds and letters 1853-1925; Dockets 1866-1891; Executor and guardian bonds and letters 1856-1924; Probate record index 1854-1926; Probate records 1853-1886; Wills 1849-1931.


Arkansas tax records replace missing censuses and provide lists of residents during years between censuses. There may be gaps of several years for some counties. For more information see Arkansas 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 Arkansas Vital Records State Department of Health, the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred or order electronically online. See also How to order Arkansas Vital Records

See also How to order Arkansas Vital Records

Vital Record Substitutes

Genealogy Societies and Libraries

Family History Centers


Sites with online indexes or images of records
ARGenWeb Free Data may be submitted by individuals or complete transcriptions
USGenWeb Archives Free Data may be submitted by individuals or may be complete transcriptions
Sites that search for links pertaining to Columbia County, Arkansas
RootsWeb Free Data may be submitted by individuals or may be complete transcriptions
Linkpendium Free Click links. Some sites they link to may have fees ($)
CyndisList Free Click links. Some sites they link to may have fees ($) Free family history resources and government records
Major catalogs for hard copy collections of Columbia County, Arkansas
Books, microfilm, or manuscripts of genealogical records
FamilySearch catalog Select topics. To select towns, add a comma to the search box.
WorldCat To find nearby libraries that have specific items, see WorldCat Online Catalog.
Allen County Public Library located in Indiana They are heavily involved in digitizing.
Arkansas History Commission AR state agency involved in organizing and maintaining state and local history of AR
See also local libraries and Arkansas Archives and Libraries
Social networking sites pertaining to Columbia County, Arkansas
GeneaBloggers enter "arkansas" in the search box to see a list and links to Arkansas Blogs
Google+ list of groups from "arkansas genealogy" search
Facebook list of groups from "Arkansas Genealogy" search Columbia County, AR Genealogy Forum Columbia County Message Board


  1. The Handybook for Genealogists : United States of America, 10th ed., (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), p. 67.
  2. Alice Eichholz, Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, 3rd ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry Pub., 2004), 65-67. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27rb 2004.
  3. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at
  5. FamilySearch Wiki contributors, "Arkansas County Marriages (FamilySearch Historical Records)," in FamilySearch Wiki, accessed 18 April 2013.


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