Henderson County, Tennessee Genealogy

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

County Facts
County seat: Lexington
Organized: November 7, 1821
Parent County(s): Chickasaw Indian Lands[1]
Neighboring Counties
Carroll  • Chester  • Decatur  • Hardin  • Madison
See County Maps
Henderson County Courthouse TN.jpg
Location Map
Location of Henderson County, Tennessee.PNG
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County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The County was named for James Henderson, a soldier in the War of 1812. The County is located in the west central area of the state.[2]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Henderson County Courthouse
17 Monroe Ave.
Lexington, TN 38351
County Courthouse Phone: 731-968-2801
County Clerk Phone: 731-968-2856
Register of Deeds Phone: 731-968-2941
Clerk & Master Phone: 731-968-9801

Circuit Court
170 Justice Center Drive
Lexington, TN 38351
Circuit Court Clerk Phone: 731-968-2031

Clerk of Chancellor Court has birth records
County Clerk has marriage records from 1893
Clerk of Circut Court has divorce and court records
Register of deeds has land records[3]

Henderson County, Tennessee Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Information for this chart was taken from various sources, often containing conflicting dates. This information should be taken as a guide and should be verified by contacting the county and/or the state government agency.

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[4]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1908 1893 1908 1850 1856 1861 1810
*Statewide registration for births and deaths began in 1914. General compliance by 1927.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

1896 Fire damaged courthouse records.[5]

  • Lost marriage records: 1821 and 1892
  • Lost probate records: 1821 to 1894

For suggestions about research in places that suffered historic record losses, see:

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

  • 1821--Henderson County was created 7 November 1821 from Chickasaw Indian Lands.
  • County seat: Lexington[6]

For animated maps illustrating Tennessee county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Tennessee County Boundary Maps" (1777-1985) may be viewed at the MapofUS.org website.

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit HomeTown Locator. The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county:[7]

Unincorporated communities
  • Juno
  • Life
  • Luray
  • Middleburg
Census-designated places

History Timeline[edit | edit source]

Additional Information
West Tennessee county established in 1821.

The county is named after War of 1812 officer James Henderson.[8]

Resources[edit | edit source]

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Biographies[edit | edit source]

Business, Commerce, and Occupations[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries of Henderson County, Tennessee online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See Tennessee Cemeteries for more information.


Additional Cemetery Resources

Census Records[edit | edit source]

1830, 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, and 1940 federal population censuses of Henderson County are available online. For tips on accessing census records online, see Tennessee Census. If you're having trouble finding your ancestors in online indexes, try checking printed indexes. Created by local experts familiar with the area's families, these indexes are often transcribed more accurately than nationwide online indexes.


See Tennessee Population Schedule Indexes: Fiche, Film, or Book for more information about statewide printed indexes.

See Henderson County, TN census assignments, including links to transcribed files. The USGenWeb Census Project®

1820 and 1860

  • Smith, Jonathan Kennon Thompson A genealogical miscellany, Henderson County, Tennessee Jackson, Tennessee J.K.T. Smith, c1997, 2001-2002 FHL US/CAN book 976.8263 N2s v. 1 - 7 (One page correction of the 1860 census and 1/2 page 1820 U.S. census, Perry County of those who lived in what became Henderson County.)

1840 Pensioners



1891 Male Voters




Church Records[edit | edit source]

List of Churches and Church Parishes


Court Records[edit | edit source]

Law and Legislation

  • Tennessee State Library and Archives, Acts of Tennessee 1796-1850: Index to Names. January 25, 2005. In addition to creating new laws, legislative acts were often required to obtain a divorce, grant legitimacy to a child, or for appointments to or grant payments for public service. The TSLA has created an index to names that appear in these acts covering the years 1796 to 1850. To read more about this valuable resource Click here. The searchable index is available at the TSLA; another version is available at World Vital Records.

Directories[edit | edit source]

Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups[edit | edit source]

Funeral Homes[edit | edit source]

Genealogies[edit | edit source]

DNA has been collected from men claiming descent from the following Henderson County residents. Attempts have not been made to verify the lineages of those tested.

  • Doss - Descendant of John Doss (1784-1846) of Henderson County, Tennessee. Y-DNA 37 Marker Test, FTDNA (Kit 59752). Genetic signature available online (labeled Jn-1), genealogical description available online, courtesy: The Doss DNA Project, World Families. Matches have been found.

Family Histories

  • Waddle, Laura: Some Early Families of Henderson County, TN Arnold, Barrow, Bradford, Cooper, Christopher, Darden, Davis, Grice, Joyner, Lewis, McCarver, McGlaughlin, Meredith, Mills, Ray, Rhodes, Waddle/Waddill, Wadley. FHL US/CAN Fiche 6046873.
  • Adams - Hampton, Estelline Adams. John Adams, Esquire (III): Ancestors and Descendants. Unknown: unknown, 1976. Available at FHL US/CAN Film 982157 Item 7; digital versions available at Ancestry ($); FamilySearch Digital Library ; and Heritage Quest Online ($).
  • Bell - Lewis, Leroy Carlisle. Leander Bell of Henderson County, Tennessee: A Genealogical Survey and Historical Record of His Life and the Lives of His Descendants and His Ancestors. Searcy, Ark.: L.C. Lewis, 1987. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 B413L.
  • Bell - Lewis, Leroy Carlisle. William Samuel Bell of Tennessee, Texas and Arkansas: A Genealogical Survey and Historical Record of His Life and the Lives of His Descendants and His Ancestors. Searcy, Arkansas: L.C. Lewis, 1987. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 B413LLc.
  • Brown - Brown, George Washington Reminiscences of the Republic of Texas 1910 Available at the Family History Library FHL book 921.73 B813bg with a digital version through FamilySearch Digital Library (found in the Library of the Alamo, San Antonio, Texas April 1965 by his Grandson Earl Travis Brown)
  • Conner - See Cravens.
  • Cravens - Cravens, John Park. Records of the Ancestry of John Park Cravens: The Lines of Direct Lineal Descent and a Summary. Booneville, AR: Unknown, 1957. Available at FHL US/CAN Film 288184; digital vestion at Heritage Quest Online ($).
  • Harwell - See Cravens.
  • Herndon - See Cravens.
  • Lane - See Cravens.
  • Reed - King, Clefaine Elizabeth Reed. Joseph Reed Sr. and His Family Through The Years, A Legend To His Family, printed 1991. (Found in the Family History Center in La Jara, Colorado; contact Marilee, 719-274-5261.)
  • Rice - See Cravens.
  • Stewart - Wadley, Richard Cratis and Eunice Stewart Goddard. Tennessee Roots: Catherine Stewart of Henderson County. Norman, Oklahoma: Eunice and Jim Goddard, 1990. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 St49wr.

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]

  • Henderson County Register of Deeds has Land Records from 1856 and is located at the Courthouse, P.O. Box 40, 17 Monroe Street, Lexington, TN 38351; (731) 968-2856. Land and property records include transfer of real estate or personal property, mortgages, leases, surveys, and entries
  • The Family History Library has microfilmed copies of deeds 1856-1900 with indexes 1856-1935.
  • "Tennessee Trails" Landowners of Henderson County, TN

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Carroll CountyDecatur CountyHardin CountyChester CountyMadison CountyTN HENDERSON.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Migration[edit | edit source]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Revolutionary War
The following Henderson County Revolutionary War records are available online through TNGenWeb:

Additional resources include:

War of 1812

Civil War

Online Records

Regiments. Men in Henderson County served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (part of a large regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Henderson County:

Confederate Soldiers

Union Soldiers

Additional sources for Civil War soldiers from Henderson County:

Civil War Battle
The following Civil War battle was fought in Henderson County:

Map showing Civil War battles fought in Tennessee.

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Many Tennessee newspapers are filmed and available at TSLA. Most of these newspapers may be accessed by interlibrary loan to libraries within Tennessee, although there are some newspapers which are not available in or outside of Tennessee. For further information regarding interlibrary loan policies and newspapers not available for interlibrary loan click here. For a list of newspapers available at the archives for Henderson County click on the following cities or towns:

  • 1794-1851 - Lucas, Silas Emmett. Marriages from Early Tennessee Newspapers 1794-1851. Easley, S.C.: Southern Historical Press, 1978. FHL 976.8 V2L.

For deaths of Methodists in Henderson County between the 1830s and the 1920s, try searching the following records:

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Historic Residences

  • Crook, W. Clay. The Jeremiah Crook Plantation of Henderson County, Tennessee: ca. 1820-1865. Crook Family Archives, Crookland, Middlefork Village, Luray, Tenn. Microfilmed in 2001. FHL VAULT US/CAN Film 2243216 Item 12.


Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Genealogical periodicals can contain unique sources and can be local, regional, or statewide. The following periodicals cover this county:

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

The County Court has responsibility for the probate records of Henderson County.

Online Records and Indexes

School Records[edit | edit source]

Social Security Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

Book Abstracts and Indexes[10]

  • 1824 Unpaid Taxes List, 1824, Ansearchin' News, Vol. 47, No. 4 (Winter 2000). FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 B2a v. 47 (2000). For access, see Henderson.
  • 1836-1837 - West, Betsy F. "Henderson County, Tennessee 1836-1837 Tax Lists," Ansearchin' News, Vol. 24, No. 1 (Spring 1977):11-14; Vol. 24, No. 2 (Summer 1977):83-87; Vol. 24, No. 3 (Fall 1977):111-114; Vol. 24, No. 4 (Winter 1977):159-163. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 B2a v. 24 (1977);digital version at society's website. For further access, see Henderson.
  • 1848 "1849 Land Sales Held in 3 West Tennessee Counties for Unpaid Taxes," [1848 taxpayers in Decatur, Carroll, and Henderson counties], Ansearchin' News, Vol. 44, No. 4 (Winter 1997):12. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 B2a v. 44 (1997). For access, see Henderson.

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Birth[edit | edit source]

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Online Indexes and Records

Death[edit | edit source]

Divorce[edit | edit source]

Online Records

Online Titles

  • W.P.A. Guide to Public Vital Statistics in Tennessee. Nashville, Tenn.: The Tennessee Historical Records Survey, 1941. FamilySearch Digital Library

Research Facilities[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]

Listed below are archives in Henderson County. For state-wide archival repositories, see Tennessee Archives and Libraries.

Family History Centers[edit | edit source]

Family History Center and Affiliate Library Locator map - search for local Family History Centers or Affiliate Libraries

  • Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance, free access to center-only databases, and to premium genealogical websites.
  • FamilySearch Affiliate Libraries have access to most center-only databases, but may not always have full services normally provided by a family history center.

Local Centers and Affiliate Libraries

Libraries[edit | edit source]

Listed below are libraries in Henderson County. For state-wide library facilities, see Tennessee Archives and Libraries.

Everett Horn Public Library
702 W Church St
Lexington, TN 38351
Phone: 731-968-3239
Email: director@ehlibrary.com
The Tennessee Room holds a variety of resources including Cemetery Records, Census Indexes, Military records, County Histories, Tax Lists, and pre-1890 Courthouse Records.

West Tennessee Heritage Study Center
Paul Meek Library
10 Wayne Fisher Dr.
Martin, TN 38238
Phone: 731-881-7065
Houses a variety of genealogical resources relating to the following counties in Tennessee: Benton, Carroll, Chester, Crockett, Decatur, Dyer, Fayette, Gibson, Hardin, Haywood, Henderson, Henry, Houston, Humphreys, Lake, Lauderdale, Madison, McNairy, Obion, Perry, Shelby, Stewart, Tipton, Wayne, Weakley and Carlisle (KY), Fulton (KY), and Hickman (KY) counties in Kentucky.

Museums[edit | edit source]

Societies[edit | edit source]

Listed below are societies in Henderson County. For state-wide genealogical societies, see Tennessee Societies.

Henderson County Historical Society

Websites[edit | edit source]

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Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Tennessee.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. Wikipedia contributors, "Henderson, Tennessee" in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henderson_County,_Tennessee accessed 21 Dec 2018
  3. The Handybook for Genealogists : United States of America, 10th ed., (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002) Henderson County, Tennessee, p.640
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Tennessee.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  5. Lost Records: Courthouse Fires and Disasters in Tennessee in Tennessee State Library and Archives in Tennessee Secretary of State (accessed 13 March 2016).
  6. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Tennessee.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  7. Wikipedia contributors, "Henderson County, Tennessee," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henderson_County%2C_Tennessee#Communities, accessed 19 November 2019.
  8. "List of counties in Tennessee," Wikipedia.
  9. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 19 September 2012)
  10. The Heritage Quest Online version of PERSI aided in the compilation of this list.
  11. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/images/d/d3/Igitennesseef.pdf.