Rush County, Indiana Genealogy

From FamilySearch Wiki
(Redirected from Rush County, Indiana)
Jump to: navigation, search
United States

Rush County

Guide to Rush County, Indiana ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.


Rush County, Indiana
Map of the U.S. highlighting Indiana
Location of Indiana in the U.S.
Founded December 31, 1821
County Seat Rushville
Address Rush County Courthouse
PO Box 429
Rushville, IN 46173-0429
Phone: 765.932.2086
County Website
Adopt-a-wiki page
Indiana Genealogical Society.JPG This page adopted by:
Indiana Genealogical Society
who welcome you to contribute.
Adopt a page today

Historical Facts

Beginning dates for major county records
*For earlier dates,

try... Church | Obituaries | Cemeteries

Neighboring Counties

Hancock  • Henry  • Fayette  • Franklin  • Decatur  • Shelby

Rush CountyFranklin CountyDecatur CountyWayne CountyHenry CountyMadison CountyHamilton CountyShelby CountyJennings CountyRipley CountyDearborn CountyBartholomew CountyHancock CountyUnion CountyFayette CountyINRush.JPG

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating Indiana County boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Indiana County Boundary Maps" (1790-1873) may be viewed for free at the website.

Record Loss

Before the city hall was built in 1881, records were not carefully protected. At one point they were kept in the office of the Justice of the Peace. Persons desiring to destroy criminal records broke in and stole the town records by mistake, and burned them.

Historical Background

In 1800, the Indiana Territory was organized. At that time, today's Rush County, Indiana, was part of the Indian Lands that made up most of the current state of Indiana. Statehood was granted in 1816. The Federal Census of 1820 found today's Rush County a part of the huge, unorganized, and sparsely populated area called Delaware County. Rush County, as it is known today, was organized 31 December 1821 from a portion of that unorganized territory. It was named for Dr. Benjamin Rush of Philadelphia.

Driven from their homes in the East, the Delaware Indian tribe resettled in western Pennsylvania, then in eastern and central Indiana. As a consequence of treaties, the final one written in 1819, their lands in Indiana were ceded to the federal government, and they moved beyond the Mississippi River.In October 1820 the newly surveyed land was offered to purchasers. In 1821 278 persons made land entries.

Within five years of the organization of the state of Indiana, many prosperous settlements had sprung up in what is now Rush County. With the organization of the county,it was divided into six townships: Union, Ripley, Noble, Washington, Richland, and Orange. Further division established Green, Rushville, Walker, Center, Jackson, Anderson, and Posey townships.

The first settlers were hunters and trappers, some of whom became permanent settlers. Timber was cleared and cabins built, usually about sixteen by twenty feet, constructed of logs with fireplaces and chimneys, furnished with rough, home-made furniture. Wild game was plentiful. Wool and flax were spun and textiles woven. Stumps were pulled and land was cleared and planted. Domestic animals foraged in the abundant wild foliage.Much feared were panthers and wolves, which threatened the livestock.Large families were typical. Hospitality was generous.

Early industries included grist mills, saw mills, and a distillery. Public schools were establishes in 1837. Early churches, in order of membership numbers, were: Church of Christ, Methodist Episcopal, Baptist, Presbyterian, Quaker, Catholic, Christian Union, Wesleyan, and Adventist.

Rushville, the county seat, was founded in 1823 and the first courthouse was contracted for that year. The growth of the community was steady. Railroads helped develop business, and trade flourished, especially in grain. The first Rush County newspaper, Dog Fennel Gazette, was published in 1823, followed by the Herald. The east Hill Cemetery was established. In 1857 the first bank opened. Mills and elevators followed, as well as carriage builders, machine works, a cigar factory, a furniture factory, a pump factory, and other enterprises. However, it has remained a small city in productive rural surroundings.

Rush County supported the election of Abraham Lincoln in the 1860 election. As the South seceded, Indiana responded to the call for volunteers. Ultimately 2,483 men served with the Union forces in the Civil War, some of them reenlistment.


Bible Records


Business Records


Tombstone Transcriptions Online Tombstone Transcriptions in Print List of Cemeteries in the county Family History Library
INGenWeb WorldCat Billion Graves
INGenWeb Archives
Billion Graves
See Indiana Cemeteries for more information.

Census Records

For tips on accessing Rush County, Indiana Genealogy census records online, see: Indiana Census.

Church Records

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 Indiana Church Records.

Finding More Church Records

Additional church records can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Rush County, Indiana Genealogy Church Records in online catalogs like:

Court Records

The county clerk has probate and court records from 1820 to the present.


Emigration and Immigration

Ethnic and religious Groups




Local Histories

Land and Property

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.

After land was transferred from the government to private ownership, subsequent transactions were recorded at the courthouse, where records are currently housed.

Land records are held by the county recorder. Records from 1789-1837 are published and indexed. Early records, prior to 1807, were handled in Cincinnati, Ohio.

See Indiana Land and Property for additional information about early Indiana land grants and patents.

Finding More Land Records

Additional land records can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Rush County, Indiana Genealogy Probate Records in online catalogs like:



Military Records

War of 1812

Civil War

Civil War service men from Rush County served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Rush County.

Civil War Books

World War I

World War II

Naturalization and Citizenship





Probate Records

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

Online Records

Found in the office of the county clerk beginning in 1822.

Finding More Probate Records

Additional probate records can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Rush County, Indiana Genealogy Probate Records in online catalogs like:

Public Records

School Records
Voting Registration


County Courthouse

Rush County Courthouse
PO Box 429
Rushville, IN 46173-0429
Phone: 765.932.2086

County Health Department has birth, death, and burial from 1882. County Clerk has marriage, divorce, probate and court records from 1822. County Recorder has land records. [3]

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.

For additional nearby Family History Centers, search online in the Family History Center directory.


Rushville Public Library
130 W. 3rd Street
Rushville, IN

Henry Henley Public Library
102 N. Main Street
Carthage, IN


Rush County Genealogical Society
PO Box 293
Milroy, IN 46156

Rush County Historical Society and Museum
619 N. Perkins St.
PO Box 302
Rushville, IN 46173
Telephone Number: 765-932-2492

Whitewater Valley Genealogical Association
PO Box 941
Connersville, IN 47331


Indiana tax records complement land records and can be used in place of censuses or to supplement the years between censuses. Because only persons who owned taxable property were listed, many residents were not included in tax lists. There may also be gaps of several years in the tax records of some counties.

For more information see the wiki page Indiana Taxation.

Finding More Tax Records

Additional tax records can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Rush County, Indiana Genealogy Tax Records in online catalogs like:

Vital Records

Birth Records

Birth records prior to 1907 are in the County Health Department. After that date they are found at the State Department of Health, Division of Vital Statistics, Indianapolis.Indiana death records from 1920 are found In the State Department of Health, Division of Vital Statistics, and prior to that date in the County Health Department.

Marriage Records

The County Clerk's office has marriage records

Death Records

Finding Vital Records at Other Repositories

Additional vital records can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Rush County, Indiana Genealogy Vital Records in online catalogs like:

Web Sites



  1. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  2. Wikipedia contributors, "Rush County, Indiana" in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia at,_Indiana (accessed 10 May 2012).
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Rush County, Indiana 216 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
Retrieved from ",_Indiana_Genealogy&oldid=2766642"