Nelson County, North Dakota Genealogy
Guide to Nelson County, North Dakota ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.
- 1 County Information
- 2 Resources
- 2.1 Bible Records
- 2.2 Biographies
- 2.3 Business, Commerce, and Occupations
- 2.4 Cemeteries
- 2.5 Census Records
- 2.6 Church Records
- 2.7 Court Records
- 2.8 Directories
- 2.9 Emigration and Immigration
- 2.10 Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups
- 2.11 Funeral Homes
- 2.12 Genealogies
- 2.13 Guardianship
- 2.14 Land and Property Records
- 2.15 Local Histories
- 2.16 Maps and Gazetteers
- 2.17 Migration
- 2.18 Military Records
- 2.19 Naturalization and Citizenship
- 2.20 Newspapers
- 2.21 Obituaries
- 2.22 Other Records
- 2.23 Periodicals
- 2.24 Probate Records
- 2.25 School Records
- 2.26 Tax Records
- 2.27 Vital Records
- 3 Research Facilities
- 4 Societies
- 5 Websites
- 6 Research Guides
- 7 References
Founded in 1883. The county seat, is Lakota.
Nelson County Courthouse
210 W B Ave
PO Box 565
Lakota, ND 58344
Nelson County Website
Clerk District Court has birth and death records from 1903, marriage, probate and land records from 1880, divorce, Court and burial records
Nelson County, North Dakota Record Dates
There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.
|2 March 1883: Nelson County was created from Foster, Grand Forks, and Ramsey Counties, and unorganized territory.|
County seat: Lakota 
The following are locations in the county
Business, Commerce, and Occupations
- Nelson County Census Records (USGenWeb Archives)
State Census Records
- 1885 Dakota Territory 1885 Census Index at NDSU Archives – index only
- 1885, 1915, 1925 North Dakota, Territorial and State Censuses, 1885, 1915, 1925 at Ancestry.com – ($), index and images
- 1915 North Dakota Census, 1915 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images
- 1925 North Dakota Census, 1925 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images
Federal Census Records
Federal Censuses were taken for North Dakota starting in 1910. For links to Federal census indexes, see North Dakota Census.
Church records can be found online, kept onsite at the church, or housed in a church archive or library. See North Dakota Church Records for more information on how to locate the records.
- Records of Center Lutheran Church, Nelson County, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
- Records of Warwick Lutheran Church, Nelson County, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
- 1902 - Aneta Medical Directory 1902 USGenWeb Archives
Emigration and Immigration
Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups
Land and Property Records
When the United States acquired North Dakota, most of the land became available for homesteading or purchase from the federal government. After land was transferred from the government to private owners, the registrar of deeds in each county recorded the land transactions in the form of deeds and mortgages. For more information, see North Dakota Land and Property.
Online Land Records
- Index to Nelson County BLM Land Records (USGenWeb Archives)
- Land Patent Search - index to federal patents and homesteads on the Bureau of Land Management] website, some images available
- 1796-1907 - U.S. General Land Office Records, 1796-1907 at Ancestry.com - index, info taken from Bureau of Land Management website
- 1861-1908 - U.S. Homestead Records 1861-1936 at Ancestry.com - ($), index and images
For more information see North Dakota Land and Property
Local histories, including those of the county, are available for Nelson County. These histories can include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information.
- 1906 - County Description and Overview (Genealogy Trails)
- 1914 - Farm Home-Making In Nelson County (Genealogy Trails)
Maps and Gazetteers
- Interactive Formation Boundary Map of North Dakota - shows boundary changes for North Dakota Counties
- North Dakota Maps at NDGenWeb -historical maps
- 1861-1865 Dakota Territory Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, 1861-1865 at FamilySearch.
- 1890 United States Census of Union Veterans and Widows of the Civil War, 1890 at FamilySearch.
World War I
- 1917-1918 North Dakota Military Men 1917-1918 at Ancestry] ($)
- 1917-1918 Roster of the men and women who served in the army or naval service (including the Marine Corps) of the United States or its allies from the state of North Dakota in the World War, 1917-1918, Vols. 1-4 at Ancestry ($)
- World War I Nelson County Military Records USGenWeb Archives)
- World War I Casualties, Nelson County, North Dakota (Genealogy Trails)
World War II
- World War II Army Casualties, Nelson County, North Dakota (Genealogy Trails)
- World War II Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard Casualties, Nelson County, North Dakota (Genealogy Trails)
- Korean War Casualties, Nelson County, North Dakota (Genealogy Trails)
- Vietnam War Casualties, Nelson County, North Dakota (Genealogy Trails)
- For further information see North Dakota Military Records.
Naturalization and Citizenship
Online Naturalization Indexes and Records
- North Dakota Naturalization Records Index at NDSU Archives] – index only, covers various dates and counties
For more information see North Dakota Newspapers.
North Dakota Newspapers Online
- GenealogyBank - ($), contains images of North Dakota newspapers
- Newspaper Archive - ($), contains images of North Dakota newspapers
- Chronicling America - contains images of some North Dakota newspapers; searching tips
- Elephind - Free; search engine that retrieves newspaper images from other free newspaper websites
North Dakota Newspaper Catalogs
- U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690-Present on Chronicling America - contains a list of all known newspapers and the dates they cover; once you locate a newspaper name, contact the local library to see if they have copies of the newspaper
- State Historical Society of North Dakota - contains inventory and catalog of all known ND newspapers
- Nelson County Obituaries and Death Notices (Genealogy Trails)
Probate records, including wills and estates, are at the county clerk's office. See also North Dakota Probate Records.
Online Probate Records
- 1800 – 1985 North Dakota and South Dakota Wills and Probate Records 1800-1985 at Ancestry.com — index and images $
- Index to Lakota School Records. Scroll down to "Schools." (USGenWeb Archives)
- 1917-1930 - Graduates of McVille High School (Genealogy Trails)
- 1906-1930 - Michigan City, ND High School Graduates (Genealogy Trails)
County tax records are at the county treasurer's, auditor's or clerk's office in the county courthouse. Some tax records may have been moved to the North Dakota State Archives.
Birth, marriage, death, and divorce records may be recorded on registers, certificates, or other documents at the county clerk's office. Many records are also being digitized and put online. See North Dakota Vital Records for more information about availability and how to access them.
- Nelson County Marriage Announcements (Genealogy Trails)
Online Death Indexes and Records
- 1892-present - NDDH Public Death Index, 1892-present at North Dakota Dept. of Health – index only
- Nelson County Obituaries and Death Notices (Genealogy Trails)
North Dakota State University Archives
West Building 3551 7th Avenue
N Fargo, ND 58102
Libraries NDSU Dept #2080
PO Box 6050
Fargo, ND 58108-6050
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.
Nelson County Historical Society
PO Box 141
Pekin, ND 58361
- Nelson County, North Dakota, USGenWeb project. May have maps, name indexes, history or other information for this county.
- Nelson County, North Dakota, USGenWeb Archives
- FamilySearch Catalog The FamilySearch catalog contains descriptions and access information for all genealogical materials (including books, online materials, microfilm, microfiche, and publications) in their collection. Use Historical Records to search for specific individuals in genealogical records.
- Nelson County, North Dakota Genealogy and Family History (Linkpendium)
- Nelson County Genealogy (LDS Genealogy)
- Nelson County, North Dakota Genealogy and History (Genealogy Trails)
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Nelson County, North Dakota Genealogy and History
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Nelson County, North Dakota. Page 525 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- Wikipedia contributors, "Nelson County, North Dakota," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia.