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Lee County, Illinois
Map
Boundary map of Lee County, Illinois
Map of the U.S. highlighting Illinois
Location of Illinois in the U.S.
Facts
Founded: February 27, 1839
County Seat Dixon
Courthouse
Lee County Courthouse.gif
Photo courtesy Illinois Regional Archives Depository, Illinois State Archives
Address Lee County Courthouse
P.O. Box 329
Dixon, IL 61021
815-288-3309
Lee County Website
 

United States Gotoarrow.png Illinois Gotoarrow.png Lee County

Contents

County Organization

Lee County's civil records start the following years:

Beginning Dates for Lee County Records
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate
1877
1839
1877
1840
1838
1839

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

Historical Facts

Richard Henry Lee.jpg

Lee County is named for Richard Henry Lee who was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence.

Parent County

  • 1839--Lee County was created 27 February 1839 from Ogle County.  County seat:  Dixon [1]

Boundary Changes

See an interactive map of Lee County boundary changes.

Record Loss

Places / Localities

Populated Places

Neighboring Counties

Records and Resources

Biography

  • The Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois has a Lee County edition. This includes a state history section along with a county history and biographies of Lee County residents. See the wiki article for links to available copies and indexes.

Cemeteries

Illinois cemetery records often identify birth, death, relationship, and military information, as well as religious affiliation.

  • Find A Grave can be searched by the name of a person or family to find where a person is buried.  Usually gives birth and death dates often with a picture of the tombstone.  May give obituaries, names of family members and links to their information in Find A Grave.

Census

Historical populations
Census Pop.
190029,894
191027,750−7.2%
192028,0040.9%
193032,32915.4%
194034,6047.0%
195036,4515.3%
196038,7496.3%
197037,947−2.1%
198036,328−4.3%
199034,392−5.3%
200036,0624.9%
201036,031−0.1%
IL Counties 1900-1990

Church History and Records

Church records may give birth, death and marriage information. It is usually best to locate church records with a search at a local level such as the city, town, or village.

Lutheran

  • Saylor, E. C., et al. Church Records Greenville, Friedens, Wellersburg, Miscellaneous Years, Somerset, Pennsylvania. Salt Lake City, Utah: Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 1957. Microfilm of a transcript in a day book of a variety of Lutheran records, including some localities in Will County, Illinois. FHL film 22058
  • Wagner, Carl Louis. Records Kept by Carl Louis Wagner, Lutheran Minister, 1920-1965. Salt Lake City, Utah: Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 1978. Contains baptisms, confirmations, funerals and weddings in several locations, including Dixon and Amboy in Lee County. FHL film 1036647 Item 1

Methodist

Court Records

Original court records are held in the office of the Circuit Court Clerk. See Illinois Court Records for more information about using court records.

  • 1840-1940 Circuit Court Case Files IRAD-NIU; search for Lee County Records. (Learn more about IRAD.)
  • 1840-1934 Index to Circuit Court Case Files (Common Law) IRAD-NIU; search for Lee County Records. (Learn more about IRAD.)

Ethnic Research

African American

The following have information concerning African American research.

Genealogy

History

Land and Property

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

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

Online Resources

  • 1800s-Present - Use the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Land Patent Index to obtain original federal land transfer records including homestead, military warrants, and cash entry patents. These records help a research establish location and lead to National Archives' records which may include genealogical information. Earlier land transfer records are housed at the National Archives.
  • Illinois Public Land Purchase Records This record extract includes over 538,000 land sales from the 19th Century. Each entry includes the purchaser's name, purchase date, number of acres, price per acre, and in some cases the purchaser's sex and residence. Available at www.ancestry.com ($)

Copies of Original Records

  • 1856-1881 Chattel Mortgage Record IRAD-NIU

Additional Resources

Additional resources for Lee County land and property may be found in the FHLC. Copies of records on FHL microfilm and microfiche can be ordered for viewing at Family History Centers. Copies of books found in the FHLC may be found in WorldCat catalog and ordered from your local library through interlibrary loan. Explore how to search the Family History Library Catalog and the Worldcat Online Catalog.

Maps

Military

Civil War

Civil War service men from Lee 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 Lee County.

- 7th Regiment, Illinois Cavalry, Company C (Also known as Morgan's Escort, Palmer's Escort, Smith's Escort).
- 10th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company G.
- 13th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Companies A and C.
- 34th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Companies C and D.
- 89th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company I.
- 140th Regiment, Illinois Infantry (100 days, 1864), Company E.

Naturalization

Newspapers and Obituaries

Probate Records

Repositories

County Courthouse

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

Family History Center

Family History Centers (FHCs) are branches of the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah (United States) and are located all over the world. Their goal is to provide resources to assist you in the research and study of your genealogy.

You may search your address for a center near you on the FamilySearch site. The following center serves Lee County:

Sterling Illinois Family History Center
2709 N 16th Avenue
Sterling, Illinois 61081
Telephone: (815) 625-1229

Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD)

The Illinois Regional Archives Depositories (IRAD), managed by the Illinois State Archives, houses 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.

The Northern Illinois University (IRAD-NIU) holds the records for Lee County. Learn more about finding and using their records.

Illinois Regional Archives Depository
c/o Regional History Center
Founders Memorial Library, Room 400
Northern Illinois University
DeKalb, IL 60115
Telephone: (815) 753-1807

Public Libraries

Dixon Public Library
221 S. Hennepin Avenue
Dixon, IL 61021
Telephone: (815) 284-7261
Winifred Knox Memorial Library
112 South Elm St.
Franklin Grove, IL 61031
Telephone: (815) 456-2823
Mills and Petrie Memorial Library and Gymnasium
704 North First Street
Ashton, IL 61006
Telephone: (815) 453-2213
Pankhurst Memorial Library
3 South Jefferson Avenue
Amboy, IL 61310
Telephone: (815) 857-3925
Paw Paw Public Library District
362 Chicago Road
P.O. Box 60
Paw Paw, IL 61353
Telephone: (815) 627-9396

Research Center

Lee County Historical Society's Research Center holdings include burial records for all cemeteries in Lee County, census records, microfilm of the Dixon Telegraph from 1851 to the present, land records, local histories, church records, and more.Their hours are limited so call ahead for availability.

Lee County Historical Society
Stella Grobe Research Center
113 Madison Avenue
PO Box 58
Dixon, Illinois
Telephone: (815) 284-1134

Taxation

Vital Records

See Illinois Vital Records for more information about Vital records in Illinois.

Vital records consist of birth, death, marriage and divorce records. Original birth and death certificates recorded until the year 1916 are kept by the Lee 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.

Birth Records

Marriage Records

Online Resources

Death Records

Online Resources

Copies of original Death Records

Additional Resources

Additional resources for Lee County births, marriages and deaths may be found in the Illinois, Ogle – Vital Records, topic page of the Family History Library catalog (FHLC). Copies of records on FHL microfilm and microfiche can be ordered for viewing at Family History Centers. Copies of books found in the FHLC may be found in WorldCat catalog and ordered from your local library through interlibrary loan. Explore how to search the Family History Library Catalog and the Worldcat Online Catalog.

Web Sites

References

  1. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), 195. (FHL Collection Ref Book 973 D27e 2002). WorldCat entry.

 

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