Livingston County, Illinois Genealogy

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

Livingston County, Illinois
Boundary map of Livingston County, Illinois
Map of the U.S. highlighting Illinois
Location of Illinois in the U.S.
Founded: February 27, 1837
County Seat Pontiac
Livingston County Courthouse.gif
Photo courtesy Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD), Illinois State Archives
Address Livingston County Courthouse
112 West Madison Street
Pontiac, Illinois 61764
(815) 844-2006
Livingston County Website

County Organization[edit | edit source]

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[1]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1878 1837 1878 1839 1835 1837 1810
*Statewide registration for births and deaths started 1916. General compliance by 1922.

County records are most often kept at the County Courthouse or another local repository. For further information about where the records for Livingston County are kept, see the Livingston County Courthouse page.

Historical Facts[edit | edit source]

Edward Livingston of New York.jpg

The county was named for Edward Livingston, a lawyer and statesman. He was the Mayor of New York City, a representive in Congress from New York and Louisiana, United States Senator from Louisiana, Secretary of State under President Jackson and United States Minister to France.

Parent County[edit | edit source]

  • 1837--Livingston County was created 27 February 1837 from LaSalle and McLean Counties.

County seat:  Pontiac [2]

Description[edit | edit source]

The county was named for Edward Livingston, Secretary of State in the cabinet of President Andrew Jackson. He was the mayor of New York City, represented New York in the United States House of Representatives, then represented Louisiana in both houses of Congress and the United States Minister to France. The county seat is Pontiac and the county was organized on February 27, 1837.[3] The County is located in the North central part of the state.[4]

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

For animated maps illustrating Illinois county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Illinois County Boundary Maps" (1790-1869) may be viewed for free at the website.

1831-1837 LaSalle
1831-1837 McLean
1826-1837 Vermilion
1827-1831 Tazewell
1821-1827 Fayette
1823-1826 Edgar
1819-1823 Clark
1816-1819 Crawford
1815-1816 Edwards
1812-1815 Madison
1801-1812 St. Clair
1790-1801 Knox, Northwest Territory

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

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

Neighboring Counties[edit | edit source]

Records and Resources[edit | edit source]

Biography[edit | edit source]

The Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois has a Livingston County edition. This includes a state history section along with a county history and biographies of Livingston County residents. See the wiki article for links to available copies and indexes.

The Biographical Record of Livingston County, Illinois 1900

Portrait and Boigraphical Album of Livingston Coutny, Illinois  1888

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

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

Census[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1840 759
1850 1,552 104.5%
1860 11,637 649.8%
1870 31,471 170.4%
1880 38,450 22.2%
1890 38,455 0.0%
1900 42,035 9.3%
1910 40,465 −3.7%
1920 39,070 −3.4%
1930 39,092 0.1%
1940 38,838 −0.6%
1950 37,809 −2.6%
1960 40,341 6.7%
1970 40,690 0.9%
1980 41,381 1.7%
1990 39,301 −5.0%
2000 39,678 1.0%
2010 38,950 −1.8%
Source: "".

Church Records[edit | edit source]

List of Churches and Church Parishes

A History of Livingston County, Illinois by Livingston Coutny History Project. Dallas, Texas: Curtis Media, c 1991. Has a section on Church and Cemetries of Livingston County. FHL book 977.361 D2h

Court Records[edit | edit source]

Original court records are held in the office of the Circuit Court Clerk. See Illinois Court Records for more information about using court records.

Ethnic Research[edit | edit source]

African American[edit | edit source]

The following have information concerning African American research.

Genealogy[edit | edit source]

History[edit | edit source]

The History of Livingston Coutny, Illinois

Land and Property[edit | edit source]

Original land records are held in the office of the County Clerk . See Illinois Land and Property for more information about using land records.

1857-1865 Swamp Land Records - IRAD-ISU. Available through the Family History Library FHL Film 1689002

1859-1946 Chattel Morgage Record - IRAD-ISU

Land records available through the Family History Library:

1853-1889 General index to deeds  FHL Film 1401697 Item 3.

1853-1921 Deed Records  FHL 451136 first film

Maps[edit | edit source]

LaSalle CountyGrundy CountyKankakee CountyFord CountyMcLean CountyWoodford CountyIL LIVINGSTON.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Military Records[edit | edit source]

For information about using Military records see Illinois Military Records

Roll of Honor Livingston County - "all wars"  This site list name of soldiers alphabetically, service in which war, where buried, rank, branch of service, unit, date of death

War of 1812[edit | edit source]

1862-1919 Military Discharge Record -IRAD-ISU

Indian Wars[edit | edit source]

Military Land Grants in Livingston County, Illinois  For Soldiers of the Indian Wars  

Civil War[edit | edit source]

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


-(William) Cogswell's Battery, Illinois Light ArtilleryRoster


-3rd Regiment, Illinois Cavalry Company K.


- 20th_Regiment,_Illinois_Infantry, Company D.
- 39th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company C.
- 44th_Regiment,_Illinois_Infantry, Company C.
- 52nd_Regiment,_Illinois_Infantry, Company D.
- 53rd_Regiment,_Illinois_Infantry, Company G.
-69th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company G.
-129th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company A, Company B, Company C, Company E, and Company G.
-138th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company F.

129th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company E, the company was raised in Fairbury, Livingston County - USGenWeb

Military Record available at the Family History Library

Patriotic Roster of Livingston County, Illinois. by J.B. Parsons. FHL Book 977.361 M23p

1865-1945 Soldier's Discharge Records from Livingston County, Illinois. Recorder FHL film 1392962 Item 3. First film of 3

Grand Army of the Republic   'Union_Veterans'_and_Lineage_Society_Records (GAR)

A list of GAR Post in Illinois additional site for post list Library of Congress

List of Pensioners on the Roll January 1, 1883

World War I[edit | edit source]

Livingston County, Illinois in the World War   (Source: Internet Archives)

World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918 (Source: Ancestry)

World War II[edit | edit source]

Army Casualties (Source: U.S. National Archives and  Record Administration)

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Original naturalization records are held in the office of the County Clerk. See Illinois Naturalization Records for more information about using naturalization records.

The following copies of original records may be accessed through the Family History Library.

1854-1906 Naturalization Records, Illinois. Livingston County Court. FHL film 1321643-1321646 Indexed.

Online Records

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Online Probate Indexes and Records

Original estates and wills are held in the office of the Circuit Court Clerk. See Illinois Probate Records for more information about using probate records.

The following abstracts and copies of original records may be accessed through the Family History Library or the Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD) located at the Illinois State University (ISU) - search for Livingston County records. For information on how to use IRAD see the ISU IRAD Wiki page.

1837-1958 Probate Case Files - IRAD-ISU

1917-1926 Probate Docket Index - IRAD-ISU

Probate records available through the Family History Library

1837-1905 Probate Records FHL film 1321647-1321649

1845-1891 Probate Records FHL film 1323368-1323377

Repositories[edit | edit source]

IRAD is a system of Illinois Regional Archives Depositories managed by the Illinois State Archives, housing the archival records of local Illinois counties, townships, municipalities and school districts. The seven Regional Depositories are housed on state university campuses scattered throughout Illinois. Illinois State University houses the records for Livingston County.

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

County records are most often kept at the County Courthouse or another local repository. For further information about where the records for Livingston County are kept, see the Livingston County Courthouse page.

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

Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD)[edit | edit source]

Illinois State Universtiy
2016 Warehouse Road Campus
Box 1520
Normal, Illinois 61802
Phone: 1-309-452-6027

Illinois Regional Archives Depository System - Local Governmental Records Listings Arranged by County

Public Libraries[edit | edit source]

Livingston County Public Libraries

School Records[edit | edit source]

1898-1995 School Pupil Diploma Record - IRAD-ISU

1898-1921 School Student Permanent Record, High School - IRAD-ISU

1935-1972 School Pupil Diploma Record, Prison - IRAD-ISU

Social Groups Online[edit | edit source]

Societies[edit | edit source]

Taxation[edit | edit source]

1872-1876 Tax Lists, Delinquent - IRAD-ISU

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

See Illinois Vital Records for more information about Vital records in Illinois. See also How to order Illinois Vital Records or order electronically online.

Order Birth and Death Certificates Online

Livingston County Vital Records Office

Livingston County Clerk

County Courthouse

112 W. Madison St.

Pontiac, IL 61764


Birth[edit | edit source]

1856-1900 Birth Certificates - IRAD-ISU

1856-1903 Birth Records - IRAD-ISU

1866-1950 Birth Record Index, Delayed - IRAD-ISU

Birth records available through the Family History Library

1878-1900 Register of births and birth certificates, Birth index, 1948-1983 FHL films 1392963 First film of 12.

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Marriage records available through the Family History Library

Death[edit | edit source]

  • 1877-1900 Death Record - IRAD-ISU. Available through the Family History Library FHL Collection item 2-3

at Illinois State Archives - index; Also at: MyHertitage($)

Online Resources

Voter Registration[edit | edit source]

Places / Localities[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:[5]

Unincorporated communities
Ghost towns

Websites[edit | edit source]

Databases Pertinent to Livingston County
Local Governmental Records Database
Name Index to Illinois Local Governments
Illinois Statewide Marriage Index
Illinois Statewide Death Index, 1916–1950
Illinois Public Domain Land Tract Sales Database
Federal Township Plats of Illinois
Livingston County Probate Case Files Index (1837–1958)

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Livingston County, Illinois. Page 192-199 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002; Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Third ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 2004), 194-197.
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), 195. (FHL Collection Ref Book 973 D27e 2002). WorldCat entry.
  3. Genealogy Trails History Group, “Livingston, Illinois Genealogy and History”, accessed 04/17/2017.
  4. Wikipedia contributors, "Livingston County," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Illinois 04/17/2017.
  5. Wikipedia contributors, "Livingston County, Illinois," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Illinois, accessed 20 March 2020.