North Carolina County Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.



Contents

Record Description

The collection includes the following various county records:

  • Coroner's Inquests (1793-1905)
  • Voter Registration Books (1888-1896)
  • Wills (1821-1968)
  • Guardianships (1849-1967)
  • Estates (1854-1968)

Most of the records are either handwritten or handwritten on preprinted forms.

Soon after they were formed, counties began recording vital records, court records, and land transactions. The records are generally well preserved. 

For a list of records by localities and dates currently published in this collection, select the Browse.

These records cover the years 1793 to 1968. 

The records were made to establish legal rights and to help track the population for health and taxation purposes. 

The information is generally reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant. Some transcription errors may have occurred. 

Citation for This Collection

The following citation refers to the original source of the data and images published on FamilySearch.org Historical Records. It may include the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records.

Court clerks. North Carolina, county records. Department of Archives and History, Raleigh, North Carolina.

Information about creating source citations for FamilySearch Historical Collections is listed in the wiki article Help:How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections.

Digital images of originals housed at various municipal archives throughout North Carolina.

Record Content

The records generally include the following information:

  • Date of the event, transaction, or recording with the county
  • Names of individual, witnesses, family members, sometimes neighbors
  • Ages
  • Relationships
  • Residences
  • Occupations
  • Signature or mark
  • Amount of any money exchanged

How to Use the Record

To begin your search it is helpful to know the following:

  • The type of event
  • The approximate date the event occurred
  • The name of the individual or individuals, such as the bride and groom, infant, or deceased

Search the Collection

To search the collection, select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page ⇒ Select “County” ⇒ Select “Record Type, Date Range and Volume” that takes you to the images.

Look at the images one by one comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine which one is your ancestor. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to make this determination.

Using the Information

When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details. Add this new information to your records of each family. The information may also lead you to other records about your ancestors.

The following examples show ways you can use the information:

  • Use the age to calculate a birth date.
  • Use the names, ages and residence church and census records.

Tips to Keep in Mind

  • Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment or military records.
  • Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname. This is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have been born, married, or died 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.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • 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 record to another record.

Unable to Find Your Ancestor?

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
  • Check for an index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.

Known Issues with This Collection

Important.png Problems with this collection?
See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

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 support@familysearch.org. 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.

Related Websites

Related Wiki Articles


Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. Guidelines are available to help you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide. If you would like to get more involved join the WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

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.

Citation Exmple for a Record Found in This Collection

"North Carolina, County Records, 1833-1970,"; images FamilySearch (https:/familysearch.org: accessed 23 June 2011). North Carolina, County Records, 1833-1970 > Gaston > Estates, vol. 39, 1909-1962, Dixon, P.M. - Dyson, > Image 447; entry for Elnora Goins, Dyson; citing County Records, Gaston County Courthouse, Gastonia, North Carolina, United States. FHL digital images, Family History Library Salt Lake City, Utah.

A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the wiki article Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.


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