Mercer County, Kentucky Genealogy

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*[ Catholic Parishes in the Diocese of Lexington]  
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*''The Centennial Celebration and Other Interesting Facts Concerning Old Mud-Meeting House near Harrodsburg, Ky., August 25, 1900.'' Digital version at {{FSbook|938401}} - free.
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Revision as of 22:43, 11 September 2012

Mercer County, Kentucky
Map of Kentucky highlighting Mercer County
Location in the state of Kentucky
Map of the U.S. highlighting Kentucky
Location of Kentucky in the U.S.
Founded October 17, 1785
County Seat Harrodsburg
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United States  Gotoarrow.png  Kentucky  Gotoarrow.png  Mercer County


Quick Dates

Mercer County's civil records start the following years:

Birth* Marriage Death* Census Land Probate

 *Many years between 1852 and 1911 are missing

County Courthouse

Mercer County, Kentucky Courthouse.JPG
 Mercer County Courthouse
235 S Main Street
PO Box 426
Harrodsburg, KY 40330-1696
Phone: 606.734.6310 

Courth Clerk has marriage,
probate and land records from 1786 and military discharge
 records from 1919; Clerk
Circuit Court has divorce and 
court records[1]


Parent County

1785--Mercer County was created 17 October 1785 from Lincoln County.
County seat: Harrodsburg [2]

Boundary Changes

See an interactive map of Mercer County boundary changes.

Record Loss


Populated Places

Battle Duncan Liberty Perryville Tollgate
Bellevue Dunnlora Lucto Pleasant Hill
Bohon Ebenezer Lucton Riverview Estates
Bondville Edgewood Lynnwood Salvisa
Braxton Fairview Maple Lawn Shawnee Run
Bruners Chapel Grapevine Maplewood Stewart
Cane Hurst Harrodsburg Mayo Stringtown
Cornishville Hickory Grove McAfee Talmage
Cummins Ferry Hilltop McGary Station Terrapin
Deep Creek Jackson Nevada Vanarsdell
Dixville Kirkwood Oakland Wilson Station
Dugansville Laurel Hill Oregon Woodlawn

Neighboring Counties


African American Research

The following have information concerning African American research.  Both should be used:



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

Individual Cemeteries:


Historical populations
Census Pop.

For tips on accessing Mercer County, Kentucky Genealogy census records online, see: Kentucky Census.

1790 - Lost, but a substitute is available, see Taxation.




It is anticipated that this bibliography will eventually identify all known family histories published about residents of this county. Use this list to:

  • Locate publications about direct ancestors
  • Find the most updated accounts of an ancestor's family
  • Identify publications, to quote Elizabeth Shown Mills, about an ancestor's "FAN Club" [Friends, Associates, and Neighbors]
  • [Finley] Finley, Carmen J. "John and Mary Finley of Montgomery (Wythe) County, Virginia," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 34, No. 4 (Oct.-Dec. 1990):243-255. Digital version at American Ancestors ($). FHL Book 975.5 B2vg v. 34 (1990).
  • [Finley] Finley, Carmen J. "John Finley of Montgomery/Wythe County, Virginia: Additional Children Identified," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 39, No. 1 (Jan.-Mar. 1995):3-22; Vol. 39, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1995):94-103; Vol. 39, No. 3 (Jul.-Sep. 1995):202-212; Vol. 39, No. 4 (Oct.-Dec. 1995):282-294. Digital version at American Ancestors ($). FHL Book 975.5 B2vg v. 39 (1995).
  • [Owens] Owens, David Hatfield. Owens Family of Virginia (Richmond, King George, Stafford, Prince William, Fauquier Counties) and Kentucky (Mason, Lewis, Fleming, Bracken, Mercer, Boyle Counties). Ann Arbor, Mich.: D.H. Owens, 1991. FHL Book 929.273 Ow2od 1991
  • [Rowland] Petersen, Carol Rowland. Descendants of John Rowland, Son of William Rowland: (Botetourt Co., Va.). Belton, Mo.: C.R. Petersen, 1999. Digital version at Family History Archive.
  • [Timmons] Corum, Frank. Captain George Timmons, Fact and Fiction. Hanson, Ky., 1990. FHL Book 929.273 T484c.
  • [Warner] Reynolds, Lyman Foster. Peter Warner Born Maryland - Fredrick County: Revolutionary War Soldier (with George Washington in Capture of Trenton) to Lincoln County Kentucky 1780's, Children Settled in Kentucky; Lincoln, Garrard, Boyle, Mercer & Washington Counties; Indiana Putnam County. Louisville, Ky.: L.F. Reynolds, 2007. FHL Book 929.273 W246r


Local Histories



French and Indian War

  • Bockstruck, Lloyd DeWitt. Virginia's Colonial Soldiers. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1988. Available at FHL. [Identifies a Mercer County veteran; see William Shepherd, page 242.]





The organization Strictly By Name provides free online indexes to early Mercer County probate records. They offer a record retrieval service to photocopy and transcribe microfilm copies of the original documents for a small fee. Available indexes:

  1. Will Book 1: 1786-1795
  2. Will Book 2: 1795-1803
  3. Will Book 3: 1803-1808
  4. Will Book 4: 1808-1813
  5. Will Book 5: 1813-1816


  • Stephenson, Martha. Education in Harrodsburg and Neighborhood Since 1775. Harrodsburg, Ky.: Harrodsburg Herald, n.d. Digital version at Kentuckiana Digital Library.


Kandie Adkinson's "Researching Early Kentucky Tax Lists: 1792-1840" is a must read. The beginning tax list researcher will find the second half of her article especially helpful and for the serious researcher, she covers the legislation involved in the tax process. She continues her work to 1880 in the 2011 editions of the periodical Kentucky Ancestors.

  • [1787-1790] Schreiner-Yantis, Netti and Florene Speakman Love. The 1787 Census of Virginia: An Accounting of the Name of Every White Male Tithable Over 21 Years, the Number of White Males Between 16 & 21 Years, the Number of Slaves over 16 & Those Under 16 Years, Together with a Listing of Their Horses, Cattle & Carriages, and Also the Names of All Persons to Whom Ordinary Licenses and Physician's Licenses Were Issued. 3 vols. Springfield, Va.: Genealogical Books in Print, 1987. Available at FHL. [Sources for this publication are: remnants of the 1787 personal property tax list, 1787 tithable lists, 1787-c1790 insolvent and removed lists, 1786 tobacco inspection petition, 1786-1788 tax list substitutes, and the 1789 personal property tax list. Mercer County is included in Vol. 2.]
  • [1789] Heinemann, Charles B. "First Census" of Kentucky 1790. Washington, D.C.: n.p., 1940. 1981 reprint: FHL US/CAN 976.9 X2ph 1981; digital version at Kentucky Kinfolks. ["1 volume of 1789 was used." (p. 2)]

Vital Records

Societies and Libraries

Web Sites


  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Mercer County, Kentucky page 273, {WorldCat|50140092|disp=At various libraries (WorldCat)}}; FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).