Maine, Washington County Courthouse Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)
|This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.|
Access the records: Maine, Washington County Courthouse Records, 1785-1950 .
The collection covers the years 1785 to 1950.
The collection consists of records and indexes from the Washington County Courthouse. It includes the following types of records:
- Census (1850-1870)
- Probate (1785-1950)
- Military (1785-1869)
- Naturalization (1785-1950)
County officials began keeping records from the time the county was formed.
For a list of records by date and event currently published in this collection, select the Browse.
Citation for This Collection
The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Records collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records.
- Washington County Registrar. Washington County Courthouse records. Register of Probate, Washington County, Maine.
Record content varies by record type. Census records will contain the following information:
- Names of household members
- Age, gender, race and occupation of each member
- Real estate value of household
- Personal estate value
- Place of birth, state, territory or country
- Married within the year?
- Attended school within the year?
- Able to read and write?
- Any physical impairments?
Probate records will generally have the following information:
- Name of primary individual
- Event date and place
- Names of parents
- Date and place of birth of parents
- Names of heirs such as spouse, children, relatives, or friends
- Name of executor, administrator, or guardian of estate
- Names of witnesses
- Dates the documents were written and recorded (used to approximate event dates since a will was usually written near the time of death)
- Description and value of property or land
Declaration of Intent to become Naturalized will contain the following information:
- Date of Declaration of Intent
- State, county and city of declaration
- Name and age of person declaring Intent
- Gender, occupation and physical description
- Date and place of birth
- Nationality and race
- Name of spouse
- Date and place of marriage
- Spouse's date and place of birth
- Date of spouse becoming a permanent resident
- Number of children
How to Use the Record
To search the collection, select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page ⇒ Select the Record Category ⇒ Select the Record Type, Year Range and Volume which 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.
To use the records it is helpful to know:
- The place where the event occurred
- The approximate date the event occurred
- The name of the individual or individuals such as the names of the bride and groom
To begin your search do the following:
- Check the index for the family name (surname) and then the given name. Indexes enable you to access records quickly by searching for the names of the primary individuals. Realize that some entries in earlier years may have been missed. Indexes may also contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings or misinterpretations.
- Make a list of the volumes and page numbers for each deed you wish to check.
- For each deed, search the noted volume and page number.
Compare the information in the records to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct person. You may need to compare the information of more than one person to make this determination.
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 that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family.
- Use the event date or age along with the residence find the family in census, church, and land records.
- Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment or military records.
- Use the parents' birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.
- The name of the officiator may be a clue to their religion or area of residence in the county.
- The name of the undertaker, mortuary, or cemetery could lead you to funeral and cemetery records, which often include the names and residences of other family members.
- 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.
Keep in mind:
- The information in the records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.
- Earlier records may not contain as much information as more recent records.
- There is also some variation in the information given from one record to another record.
If you are unable to find the ancestors you are looking for, try the following:
- Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
- Check for an index. There are often indexes created by local genealogical and historical societies.
- Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.
For a summary of this information see the wiki article: United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records).
Related Wiki Articles
- Maine Census
- Maine Military Records
- Maine Probate Records
- Maine Naturalization and Citizenship
- Washington County, Maine
Contributions to This Article
| We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records. |
Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.
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.
A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the wiki article Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.
Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection
"Maine, Washington County Courthouse Records, 1785-1950: digital images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org: accessed 22 September 2011). Willam Anderson, censuses 1860 & 1870; Census Records>Census index, 1850-1870, Pembroke>Image 16; Washington County Registrar, Machias, Maine, United States.