Menard County, Illinois GenealogyEdit This Page

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Menard County, Illinois
Boundary map of Menard County, Illinois
Map of the U.S. highlighting Illinois
Location of Illinois in the U.S.
Founded: February 15, 1839
County Seat Petersburg
Menard County Courthouse.gif
Photo courtesy Illinois Regional Archives Depository, Illinois State Archives
Address Menard County Courthouse
P.O. Box 465
Petersburg, Illinois 62675
(217) 632-3201
Menard County Website
United States Gotoarrow.png Illinois Gotoarrow.png Menard County


Menard County Organization

Menard County's civil records start the following years:

                                     Beginning Dates for Menard County Records
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate

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

Historical Facts

Menard County is named for Pierre Menard who was the first Lieutenant Governor of Illinois.

Parent County

  • 1839--Menard County was created 15 February 1839 from Sangamon County.  County seat: Petersburg [1]

Boundary Changes

See an interactive map of Menard County boundary changes.

Record Loss

Places / Localities

Populated Places

  • Athens (city)
  • Greenview (village)
  • Oakford (village)
  • Petersburg (city)
  • Tallula (village)

Neighboring Counties

Records and Resources



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.


Historical populations
Census Pop.
IL Counties 1900-1990

1840 Pensioners

  • A Census of Pensioners for Revolutionary or Military Services: With their Names, Ages, and Places of Residence, as Returned by the Marshalls of the Several Judicial Districts, Under the Act for Taking the Sixth Census. Washington, D.C., 1841. FHL 973 X2pc 1840; FHL 2321; digital version at Google Books. [See Illinois, Menard County on page 187.]

Church Records

Church records may give birth, death and marriage information as well as indictate family relationships. See Illinois state wiki article Church Records for more ideas about how to use church records in your research. Many libraries( WorldCat) and the Family History Library hold abstracts of church records for Menard County. Learn more about how to search WorldCat.


New Salem
The church appears to one of the first churches in the area. It was actually organized in 1829 prior to Menard County being formed. The church was known as Salem until 1832, then it was listed as "New Salem." More information can be found at Church and Family History Research Assistance for Menard County, Illinois.

Court Records

Ethnic Research

African American

The following have information concerning African American research.


History   Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site, about 2 miles South of Petersburg, is a reconstruction of the village where Abraham Lincoln spent his early adulthood.

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 the University of Illinois at Springfield - search for Menard County records. For information on how to use IRAD see the UIS IRAD Wiki page.

Online Resources

  • BLM GLO Records. Search original land patents for Menard County from the Govenment Land Office (GLO) or Eastern States Office. Some searches include images of the original warrants. All search results include the patant details needed for requesting copies of the land entry files at the National Archives. The GLO is the custodian of millions of land title documents. The General Land Office Automated Records Project is responsible for making these important documents available to the public.
  • Illinois Public Domain Land Tract Sales. The Illinois State Archives has an online index to the records of Public land sales held by the State Archives. The indexes are by purchasers name and by legal description. This is a statewide collection with nearly 550,000 land sales fro 54740 square miles.
  • 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 ($)

Copies of original records

  • 1861-1867 Swamp Land Account Record IRAD-UIS
  • 1861-1870 Swamp Land Record IRAD-UIS

Additional Resources

Additional resources for Menard 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.



  • Civil War
    Civil War service men from Menard 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 Menard County.
- 28th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Companies F and K
- 71st Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company G.
- 85th Regiment, Illinois Infantry[2]
- 152nd Regiment, Illinois Infantry (1 year, 1865), Company A.


Newspapers and Obituaries

Probate Records

Original probate records are held by the circuit court clerk. Probate records include wills, inventories, settlements, and guardianship records. Copies of probate records are held at IRAD. Explore how to search IRAD–UIS. The following copies are available at IRAD–UIS and in the Family History Library Catalog:

The following index is abstracted from Menard County probate records:


County Courthouse

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

Currently there are no Family History Centers located directly in Menard County. The center in Springfield is the closest. The wiki page may supply hours and other information.

Springfield Illinois Family History Center
3601 Buckeye Dr.
Springfield, Illinois 62707

You may search for other centers on the FamilySearch site.

Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD)

IRAD is a system of Illinois Regional Archives Depositories managed by the Illinois State Archives, housing 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 University of Illinois at Springfield (UIS) houses the records for Menard County. The link will help you find and use the records. There address is:

Illinois Regional Archives Depository
University of Illinois at Springfield Region
One University Plaza, MS BRK 140
Springfield, Illinois 62703-5407

Public Libraries

Petersburg Public Library

220 South 6th street
Phone - (217) 632-2807
Fax - (217) 632-2833

Social Groups Online


Menard County Historical society

125 S 7th St
Petersburg, IL 62675

Mo-Fr 9-12; except holidays
Jun-Aug: also Mo-Fr 1-4


Vital Records

Birth Records

Marriage Records

Available at $:

  • Menard county marriages in "Illinois Marriages 1790 to 1860." The source of this collection is films in the Family History Library's collection
  • Menard County marriages in "Illinois Marriages 1851 to 1900." The source of this collection is films in the Family History Library's collection

Death Records

Web Sites


  1. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), 196. (FHL Collection Ref Book 973 D27e 2002). WorldCat entry.
  2. Menard County Military and Veterans, Illinois Ancestors Presents Menard County.


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