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Guide to Sonoma County California genealogy. Birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

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Online Records


Sonoma County, California
Map
Map of California highlighting Sonoma County
Location in the state of California
Map of the U.S. highlighting California
Location of California in the U.S.
Facts
Founded February 18, 1850
County Seat Santa Rosa
Courthouse
Address Sonoma County Courthouse
2300 County Center Drive
laPlaza Building B177
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
Phone: 707.565.3800
Sonoma County Website


Contents

County Courthouse

County Recorder has birth, marriage, death and land records
County Clerk has divorce, probate and court records from 1850[1]

Historical Facts

Parent County

18 February 1850: Sonoma County was created as an original county.  County seat: Santa Rosa [2]

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating California county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation California County Boundary Maps" (1850-1925) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Records Loss

1906: Courthouse burned and many records were damaged. For a list of record loss in California counties see: California Counties with Burned Courthouses

For further information on researching in burned counties, see the following:

Places/Localities

Populated Places

Neighboring Counties

Resources

Bible Records

Biography

Cemeteries

BillionGraves:

Census

For tips on accessing Sonoma County, California census records online, see: California Census.

Church History and Records

Church records and the information they provide vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. They may contain information about members of the congregation, such as age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information and maiden names; and death date. For general information about California denominations, view the California Church Records wiki page.

LDS Ward and Branch Records

  • Santa Rosa

Court Records

Crime and Criminals

Directories

Ethnic, Political, or Religious Groups

Germans

History

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

Land and Property

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

Maps

Casonoma.png

Migration

Military History and Records

Civil War

Regiments. Service men in Sonoma County, California 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 Sonoma County, California:

- 2nd Regiment, California Infantry (Union), Company D

Naturalization and Citizenship

Newspapers

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

Probate Records

The county clerk is usually the custodian of probate records. The records include wills, fee books, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, probate ticklers, and dockets.

Content: Probate Records may give the decedent's date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, neighbors, associates, relatives, and their place of residence.

You can obtain copies of the original probate records (such as wills and estate files) by writing to the county clerk at the county courthouse.

The Family History Library Catalog lists films of probate records. To find the records for this county, use the Place Search for California - Sonoma - Probate records.

Repositories

Archives, Libraries and Museums

Sonoma County History and Genealogy Library

County Courthouse

Family History Centers

Societies

Taxation

California tax records complement land records and can supplement the years between censuses. There may be gaps of several years in the tax records of some counties. For more information, see the wiki page California Taxation.

Vital Records

Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents. See the CDC Where to Write website for information on acquiring copies of these records. The State office has records since July 1905. For earlier records, contact the County Recorder. See also How to order California Vital Records

Birth

Marriage

Divorce

Death

Voting Registers

Genealogy Societies, Archives and Libraries

Web Sites

References

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Sonoma County, California. Page 87At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).

 

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  • This page was last modified on 21 March 2014, at 00:26.
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