Lee County, Florida Genealogy

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United States
Florida
Lee County

Guide to Lee County Florida Genealogy. Birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

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Lee County, Florida
Map
Map of Florida highlighting Lee County
Location in the state of Florida
Map of the U.S. highlighting Florida
Location of Florida in the U.S.
Facts
Founded May 13, 1887
County Seat Fort Myers
Courthouse
Florida Lee Courthouse.jpg
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County Information

Lee County, Florida Record Dates

Beginning Dates for Major County Records[1]
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate

County Courthouse

Lee County Courthouse
2115 2nd St;
Fort Myers, FL 33901
Ph. 941.335.2283

Clerk Circuit Court has marriage, divorce, probate court and land records. 

History

Parent County

1887--Lee County was created 13 May 1887 from Monroe County.
County seat:  Fort Myers [2] The county was named for Robert E. Lee, Confederate general in the American Civil War.

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating Florida county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Florida County Boundary Maps" (1821-1997) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.


Record Loss

There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.

Places / Localities

Populated Places

Neighboring Counties

  • Charlotte - Charlotte County was established April 23, 1921 named for the Bay of Charlotte Harbor. Punta Gorda is the only incorporated city in Charlotte County.
  • Collier - Collier County was created in 1923 from Lee County. It was named for Barron Collier, an advertising mogul and real estate developer from New York City.
  • Glades - Glades County was created in 1921 and is named for the Florida Everglades.  The Brighton Seminole Indian Reservation is located in the county.
  • Hendry - Hendry County was formed from Lee County on May 11, 1923 and named for Major Francis A. Hendry, one of the first settlers.  Hendry County is the site of the Big Cypress Seminole Indian Reservation.

Resources

African American

Cemeteries


Tombstone Transcriptions Online Tombstone Transcriptions in Print List of Cemeteries in the county
Findagrave.com Family History Library Findagrave.com
FLGenWeb WorldCat Billion Graves
FLGenWeb Archives Interment.net
Tombstone Project Veterans Administration National Cemeteries
Billion Graves


Census

For tips on accessing Lee County, Florida Genealogy census records online, see: Florida Census.

  • 1783 Spanish Census USGenWeb
  • 1821 Census/Tax List Index USGenWeb
  • 1823 Census/Tax List Index USGenWeb
  • 1880 Census African Born Blacks and Mulattos USGenWeb
  • Federal Census Information from National Archives USGenWeb
  • State Census Information from Florida State Archives USGenWeb
  • Census of Pensioners Revolutionary Military Service USGenWeb


Church

Church records and the information they provide vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. They may contain information about members of the congregation, such as age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information and maiden names; and death date. For general information about Florida denominations, view the Florida Church Records wiki page.

Court

Land

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

Florida Territorial Land Records

Local Histories

Local histories are available for Lee County, Florida 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 Florida Local Histories.

Maps

Fllee.png

Military

Civil War
Korean War
Vietnam War

Newspapers

Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Lee County, Florida Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:

  • News-Press 2442 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Fort Myers, FL 33901- 239.335.0200
  • Microfilm for the Fort Myers News-Press from 1884 to the present can be found at the Fort Myers Regional Library
    2450 First Street
    Fort Myers, Florida 33901
  • USGenWeb Archives Early Florida Newspapers at the Florida State Library

Obituaries

Probate

Probate records are held by the Lee County, Florida Genealogy Clerk of Court and are housed at the Lee County, Florida Genealogy Courthouse. See the wiki page Florida Probate Records for information about how to use probate records.

Content: Probate Records may give the decedent's date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, neighbors, associates, relatives, and their place of residence.

Record types: Wills, estates, guardianships, naturalizations, and adoptions.

Online Probate Records


Taxation

Taxes were levied on free white males over 21 and slaves aged 21 to 60. These persons are referred to as "polls." Tax listings, or digests, of a county generally list the taxable landowners and other polls and the amount of tax. The records for each county are divided by militia district. For more information see the wiki page Florida Taxation.

Voter Registration

1885-1909 "Voter Registration Records, Town of Fort Myers and Lee County, Florida 1885-1909". A limited printing was done with copies being donated to the Fort Myers Regional Library, the Southwest Florida Museum of History, the Southwest Florida Historical Society, the State Library of Florida, and the Lee County Genealogical Society.

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 Florida Department of Health, Bureau of Vital Statistics, the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred or order electronically online. See also How to order Florida Vital Records

For some online statewide indexes, see the FamilySearch Historical Record Collections for Florida.

Birth Records
Death Records
Divorce Records
Marriage Records

Societies and Libraries

Lee County Genealogical Society, Inc.
PO Box 150153
Cape Coral, FL 33915-0153
Telephone: 239-246-5185
E-mail:GenHelp@LCGSFL.org
Website




Family History Centers

Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance and free access to premium genealogical websites. In addition, many centers have free how-to genealogy classes. See Family History Center for more information. Search the online FHC directory for a nearby family history center.

Web Sites

References

  1. Alice Eichholz, Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, Revised ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1992), 123-139. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27rb 1992
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).