Georgia County Marriages (Family Search Historical Records)Edit This Page
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|This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.|
Access the records: Georgia County Marriages, 1785-1950 .
The collection consists of an index and images of marriages recorded in Georgia counties for the years 1785 to 1950. Due to privacy laws, recent records may not be displayed. The year range represents most of the records, although a few counties may have records from earlier or later.
Information usually found in the marriage records include the following:
- Name of the groom
- Name of the bride, often including the maiden name of the bride
- Names of the officiator and witnesses
- Marriage date
- Marriage place
Later records also include:
- Names of the parents or guardians of the bride and groom
- Birthplaces of the bride and groom
- Residences of the bride and groom
- Age and races of the bride and groom
- Marital status of the bride and groom
How to Use the Record
To begin your search it is helpful to know
- Names of the bride and groom
- Identifying information such as the approximate marriage date and place
Search the Collection
Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the ancestors in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination.
As you are searching it is helpful to know such information as your ancestor’s given name and surname, some identifying information such as residence and age, and family relationships. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name as your ancestor and that your ancestor may have used nicknames or different names at different times.
For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line video at FamilySearch Search Tips.
Using the Information
When you have located your ancestor’s marriage record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family. For example:
- Use the marriage date and place as the basis for compiling a new family group or for verifying existing information.
- Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth of each partner to find a couple's birth records and parents' names.
- Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth to find the family in census records.
- Use the residence and names of the parents to locate church and land records.
- Use the parents’ birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.
Tips to Keep in Mind
- The name of the officiator is a clue to their religion or area of residence in the county. However, ministers may have reported marriages performed in other counties.
- Compile the marriage entries for every person who has the same surname as the bride or groom; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
- Continue to search the marriage records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives of the bride and groom who may have married in the same county or nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family or even the second marriage of a parent. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.
- Use the marriage number to identify previous marriages.
- When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
- The information in marriage records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.
- Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1800s.
- There is also some variation in the information given from one marriage record to another record.
Unable to Find Your Ancestor?
- Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for nicknames and abbreviated names.
- Search the indexes and records of nearby localities.
- Try alternative search methods such as only filling in the surname search box (or the given name search box) on the landing page leaving the other box empty and then click on search. This should return a list of everyone with that particular name. You could then browse the list for individuals with the same family number.
General Information About These Records
Marriages were recorded by the clerk of the district court for each county from the time the county was formed. Persons desiring to marry obtained a license that they presented to the minister or other person authorized to marry, such as a justice of the peace. Once the marriage was performed, the officiator sent a return to the clerk confirming that the marriage had occurred.
Civil marriage records were created to legalize marital relationships and to protect the interests of the wife and other heirs to legal claims on property.
The records are arranged by county, then by volume and year range. Marriage records were generally well preserved, although fires, floods, or other disasters may have destroyed some.
The earliest records were usually handwritten on loose papers and later bound into lettered volumes. Some marriage records had multiple entries on each page while others had single records per page.
The marriage date, place, residence of the bride and groom, and occupations are relatively reliable. Other information, such as age or birthplace, is dependent on the knowledge, memory, and accuracy of the informants, usually the bride and groom.
For a summary of this information see the wiki article: United States, How to Use the Records Summary.
Known Issues with This Collection
For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection, see the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to email@example.com. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.
- Georgia County Marriages
- Free Georgia Genealogy Databases
- I Dream of Genealogy Georgia Marriages
- Access Genealogy Georgia
- Georgia Genealogy Sites
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Contributions to This Article
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Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections
“Citations for individual image records are available for this collection. Browse through images in this collection and click on the “Show Citation” box: Georgia, County Marriages, 1785-1950
When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.
A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the Wiki Article: How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.
Sources of information for This Collection
Georgia, County Marriages, 1785-1950. Various county courthouses throughout Georgia.