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United States Gotoarrow.png Iowa Gotoarrow.png Pottawattamie County

Guide to Pottawattamie County Iowa genealogy. Birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

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Online Records


Pottawattamie County, Iowa
Map
Map of Iowa highlighting Pottawattamie County
Location in the state of Iowa
Map of the U.S. highlighting Iowa
Location of Iowa in the U.S.
Facts
Founded September 21, 1848
County Seat Council Bluffs
Courthouse

Contents

County Courthouse

History

Parent County

1848--Pottawattamie County was created 21 September 1848 from unorganized territory. County seat: Founded as Kanesville; renamed Council Bluffs 19 January 1953. [1] [2]

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating Iowa County boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Iowa County Boundary Maps" (1816-1872) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Apparently the new county, covering over 5,000 sq. miles, once included nearly all of Iowa's Missouri River drainage between the southern halves of what are now Monona and Crawford Counties and the northern edge of Fremont, Page, Taylor, and Ringgold Counties. The following counties were completely formed from within this expanse: Harrison, Shelby, Cass, Mills, Montgomery, and Adams; most of Audubon, along with portions of Union, Adair, Guthrie, Carroll, Crawford, and Monona Counties were also part of Pottawattamie County until 1851.[3] However, the area near Mt. Pisgah was never in Pottawattamie County. Iowa's legislature gave the eastern half of today's Union County to Clarke County in 1846, then shrank both Clarke and neighboring Lucas County in 1847 (before either county became functional). As a result, the Mt. Pisgah community and cemetery were in a non-county area until Union County was formed in 1851 and organized in 1853.[4]

Record Loss

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

Places/Localities

Populated Places

Neighboring Counties

Cass • Harrison • Mills • Montgomery • Shelby • Douglas County, Nebraska • Sarpy County, Nebraska

Pottawattamie CountyCass CountyAdams CountyMontgomery CountyMills CountyHarrison CountyShelby CountyAudubon CountyGuthrie CountyAdair CountyTaylor CountyPage CountyFremont CountyMonona CountyCrawford CountyCarroll CountyGreene CountyBurt CountyWashington CountyDouglas CountySarpy CountyCass CountySaunders CountyDodge CountyIAPottawattamie.JPG

Resources

Cemeteries

Cemeteries, grouped by search site.  Information on search sites may vary from site to site, but usually at least has the name, most will have dates, and some will include epitaphs and other information.  Some include photos, some do not.  Indexing of headstone data and locations will also vary, completeness of coverage of any particular cemetery may also vary.

BillionGraves.com. 

Findagrave:


Interment.net:

Census

Church

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 Iowa Church Records.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

LDS Ward and Branch Records

  • Council Bluffs
  • Council Bluffs Dist
  • Council Point
  • Lake
  • Pottawatomie
  • Shirtses
  • Union
Lutheran

Council Bluffs

  • Records of the American Lutheran Church, Council Bluffs, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).

St. Paul's Lutheran Church, Neola

  • Records of the St. Paul's Lutheran Church, Neola, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).

Underwood

  • Records of the American Lutheran Church, Underwood, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).

Court

Land

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents.

See Iowa Land and Property for additional information about early Iowa land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse, where records are currently housed.

Local Histories 

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

Maps

Migration

Early migration routes to and from Pottawattamie County, Iowa for European and African American settlers included:

Military

Civil War

Regiments. Service men in Pottawattamie County, Iowa 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 Pottawattamie County, Iowa:

- 4th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company B
- 15th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company H
- 17th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company H
- 23rd Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company E
- 29th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company A
- 15th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company H
:- 17th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company H
:- 23rd Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company E
:- 29th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company A
:- 4th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company B

Newspapers

Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Pottawattamie County, Iowa newspapers in online catalogs like:

Probate

In most counties in Iowa, probate records have been kept by the county judge. They include wills, fee books, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, probate ticklers, and dockets. The records are available at the county courthouse.

The FamilySearch Catalog lists films of probate records. To find the records for this county, use the Place Search for Iowa - Pottawattamie - Probate records.

Taxation

Iowa tax records complement land records and can be used to supplement the years between censuses. Tax lists were usually made every year, however, there may be gaps of several years. For more information, see the wiki page Iowa 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 Iowa Department of Public Health or the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred. See also How to order Iowa Vital Records or order electronically online..

Societies and Libraries

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

  • Pottawattamie County Genealogical Society Library: This Library is down the street from the Council Bluffs Public Library. Among other things, they have an obituary index for the local papers. You can contact them via their Email address which is given on their webpage.

Family History Centers