Poweshiek County, Iowa Genealogy

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Revision as of 21:09, 13 August 2013

United States Gotoarrow.png Iowa Gotoarrow.png Poweshiek County

Guide to Poweshiek County Iowa genealogy. Birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

Hand and keyboard.jpg Iowa
Online Records

Poweshiek County, Iowa
Map of Iowa highlighting Poweshiek County
Location in the state of Iowa
Map of the U.S. highlighting Iowa
Location of Iowa in the U.S.
Founded February 17, 1843
County Seat Montezuma


County Courthouse 

The Poweshiek County Courthouse in Montezuma contains vital records (starting about 1848 for birth, marriage, and death) on the 2nd floor. The staff is friendly and helpful. Access inside the records vault is allowed, although no cameras are permitted. There is no charge for transcribing documents, and since personal computers are allowed inside the records vault, transcription is easy. The cost for having the staff make copies was only a few dollars per copy.


Parent County

1843--Poweshiek County was created 17 February 1843 from Keokuk County.  It was attached to Mahaska and iowa Counties prior to organization 3 April 1848.  County seat:  Montezuma [1]

Boundary Changes

Record Loss


Populated Places

Neighboring Counties

Benton | Iowa | Jasper | Keokuk | Mahaska | Marshall | Tama




Most church records are held by individual churches. For contact information, check a phone directory, such as SearchBug or Dex Knows. Some denominations are gathering their records into a central repository. For more information about these major repositories, see Iowa Church Records.

  • Records of the Trinity Lutheran Church, Malcom, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).



Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents.

See Iowa Land and Property for additional information about early Iowa land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse, where records are currently housed.

Local Histories 

Local histories are available for Poweshiek County, Iowa Genealogy. County histories may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories, see the wiki page section Iowa Local Histories.





Wikipedia has more about this subject: List of online newspaper archives

NewspaperArchive.com ($) has a large collection of digitized Iowa newspapers online. This database is sometimes free at libraries.


In most counties in Iowa, probate records have been kept by the county judge. They include wills, fee books, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, probate ticklers, and dockets. The records are available at the county courthouse.

The FamilySearch Catalog lists films of probate records. To find the records for this county, use the Place Search for Iowa - Poweshiek - Probate records.


Iowa tax records complement land records and can be used to supplement the years between censuses. Tax lists were usually made every year, however, there may be gaps of several years. For more information, see the wiki page Iowa Taxation.

Vital Records

Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents. A copy or an extract of most original records can be purchased from the Iowa Department of Public Health or the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred. See also How to order Iowa Vital Records or order electronically online.

Societies and Libraries

The Montezuma Public Library contains only an handful of local history books.  All newspapers and genealogical materials are in the Poweshiek County Historical and Genealogical Society in Montezuma (see website below).

Family History Centers

Web Sites


  1. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).