Morgan County, Illinois Genealogy

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

Morgan County, Illinois
Map of Illinois highlighting Morgan County
Location in the state of Illinois, United States Genealogy
Map of the U.S. highlighting Illinois
Location of Illinois in the U.S.
Founded: January 31, 1823
County Seat Jacksonville
Morgan County Courthouse.gif
Photo courtesy Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD), Illinois State Archives
Address Morgan County Courthouse
300 W. State Street
Jacksonville, Illinois 62650
(217) 243-8581
Morgan County Website

Morgan County Organization[edit | edit source]

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[1]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1878 1827 1878 1828 1824 1836 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 Morgan County are kept, see the Morgan County Courthouse page.

Historical Facts[edit | edit source]

Daniel Morgan

Morgan County is named for Daniel Morgan who was a General of the Revolution and was one of the most gifted battlefield tacticians of the War.[2]

Parent County[edit | edit source]

  • 1823--Morgan County was created 31 January 1823 from Sangamon County.  County seat:  Jacksonville [3]

Description[edit | edit source]

The county was named for General Daniel Morgan, who defeated the British at the Battle of Cowpens in the American Revolutionary War. The county seat is Jacksonville and the county was organized on January 31, 1823. The County is located in the West Central area 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.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

1827 Fire burned the courthouse on 6 December and destroyed most records.

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

Places / Localities[edit | edit source]

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:[5]

Unincorporated communities
  • Prentice
  • Rees
  • Sinclair

Neighboring Counties[edit | edit source]

Records and Resources[edit | edit source]

Biography[edit | edit source]

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

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries of Morgan 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.
1830 12,714
1840 19,547 53.7%
1850 16,064 −17.8%
1860 22,112 37.6%
1870 28,463 28.7%
1880 31,514 10.7%
1890 32,636 3.6%
1900 35,006 7.3%
1910 34,420 −1.7%
1920 33,567 −2.5%
1930 34,240 2.0%
1940 36,378 6.2%
1950 35,568 −2.2%
1960 36,571 2.8%
1970 36,174 −1.1%
1980 37,502 3.7%
1990 36,397 −2.9%
2000 36,616 0.6%
2010 35,547 −2.9%
Source: "".
  • 1840 Pensioners
A Census of Pensioners for Revolutionary or Military Services: With their Names, Ages, and Places of Residence, as Returned by the Marshalls of the Several Judicial Districts, Under the Act for Taking the Sixth Census. Washington, D.C., 1841. FHL 973 X2pc 1840; FHL 2321; digital version at Google Books. [See Illinois, Morgan County on page 187.]
  • 1850 Census
1850 Census of Morgan County, IL at Rootsweb : Free; Index.
  • 1860 Census
1860 Census of Morgan county, IL at Rootsweb : Free; Index

Church History and Records[edit | edit source]

List of Churches and Church Parishes

Church records can give birth, death and marriage information as well as indictate family relationships. See Illinois state wiki article Church Records for more ideas about how to use church records in your research.
The Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois has a Morgan County edition. This includes two chapters on Morgan County churches. Early rural churches are discussed beginning on page 665. Jacksonville churches are listed beginning on page 717. See the wiki article for links to available copies and indexes.

The Introduction to the FamilySearch Catalog lists records of several Morgan County congregations. Explore these records. Other libraries also hold copies of abstracted Morgan County church records. (How to explore WorldCat).

The following online abstracts are available:
Non-Denominational Christian


Church of Christ

  • 1852–1871 Old Berea Church. - List of members. Courtesy of Illinois Trails.
  • 1852–1871 Old Berea Church. - List of members.Courtesy of the Morgan Area Genealogical Association.


  • 1834–1879 Trinity Church - Membership, Baptism, Marriage and Death Records. Courtesy of the Morgan Area Genealogical Association.


Methodist Episcopal


United Methodist

  • Illinois Great Rivers Conference Collection is housed at the Pheiffer Library on the campus of MacMurray College in Jacksonville, Illinois. Some records are available online. Contact the archivist for more information. 

Lauretta Scheller
IGRC Archives
Pfeiffer Library - MacMurray College
447 E. College Ave.
Jacksonville, IL 62650

Court Records[edit | edit source]

1850–1932  Morgan County Poor Farm Record Index IRAD–UIS Explore how to use IRAD.

Ethnic Research[edit | edit source]

African American[edit | edit source]

The following have information concerning African American research.

Portuguese Immigration from Madeira[edit | edit source]

A large number of Portuguese immigrants from Madeira arrived in Jacksonville, Illinois in November of 1949, fleeing religious persecution.  A synopsis of the events surrounding their immigration is contained in  

Genealogy[edit | edit source]

History[edit | edit source]

Land[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.

Land and Property records in the FamilySearch Catalog may be searched by subject. Explore FamilySearch Catalog records.

IRAD land holdings for Morgan County include Land patents 1825 to 1833 and taxable land lists 1836 to 1861. See the IRAD-UIS wiki page on how to search IRAD records.

Online Resources

  • Illinois Public Domain Land Tract Sales. The Illinois State Archives has an online index to the records of Public land sales held by the State Archives. The indexes are by purchasers name and by legal description. This is a statewide collection with nearly 550,000 land sales fro 54740 square miles.
  • First index to Book B of Morgan County land records transcribed by Florance Huchison and online at GenWeb. Dates undetermined.
  • BLM GLO Records. Search original land patents for Morgan County from the Govenment Land Office (GLO) or Eastern States Office. Some searches include images of the original warrants. All search results include the patant details needed for requesting copies of the land entry files at the National Archives. The GLO is the custodian of millions of land title documents. The General Land Office Automated Records Project is responsible for making these important documents available to the public.
  • 1796–1907 U.S. General Land Office Records found at Ancestry ($)
  • Illinois Public Land Purchase Records This record extract includes over 538,000 land sales from the 19th Century. Each entry includes the purchaser's name, purchase date, number of acres, price per acre, and in some cases the purchaser's sex and residence. Available at ($)
  • Morgan County Federal Township Plats
  • Sheldon, Theodore. Land registration in Illinois. Chicago: Callaghan Co., 1901. Digital book. Expains the laws regarding land and the land systems used in Illinois. Includes court cases involving land issues. In addition to being on Ancestry, this book is available online at no cost at Internet Archives and Google Books.

Maps[edit | edit source]

Brown CountyCass CountySangamon CountyMacoupin CountyGreene CountyScott CountyPike CountyIL MORGAN.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Military[edit | edit source]

Civil War[edit | edit source]

Civil War service men from Morgan 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 Morgan County.

- 6th Regiment, Illinois Cavalry, Company C.\
- 10th Regiment, Illinois Infantry (3 months, 1861), Companies B and G.
- 10th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Companies A and B.
- 13th Regiment, Illinois Cavalry, Company G.
- 14th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company I.
- 27th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company K
- 33rd Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Companies F and K.
- 34th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company G.
- 68th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company A.
- 101st Regiment, Illinois Infantry, All Companies.
- 115th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company I.
- 133rd Regiment, Illinois Infantry (100 days, 1864), Company B.
- 145th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company C.
- 149th Regiment, Illinois Infantry (1 year, 1865), Company G.
- 154th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company K.
- 11th Regiment, Missouri Infantry (Union), Company I
:- 9th Provisional Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia (Union), Company B
:- 43rd Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia (Union), Company I
:- 43rd Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia (Union), Company K
:- 43rd Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia (Union), Company L
:- 43rd Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia (Union), Company M
:- 60th Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia (Union), Company B
:- 60th Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia (Union), Company C
:- 60th Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia (Union), Company G
:- 60th Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia (Union), Company I
:- 1st Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia Cavalry (Union), Company G

  •   Meticuloulsy researched site produced by an individual researcher.  Lists all Illinois Civil War units with soldiers from Morgan County.  Provides individual files for each soldier serving in the 101ST Illinois Infantry.  Contains enlistment data, service record, marriage, census, pension index, children, death and burial records. A few pictures and obituaries were found. 

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Online Records

Newspapers and Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Warren Haley's abstracts of thousands of obituaries published in Jacksonville newspapers between 1976 and 1996 are available online, courtesy: Researching Your Roots in Central Illinois.

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Online Probate Indexes and Records

Original Morgan County probate records are available at the Morgan County Courthouse. Probate records include wills, inventories, settlements, and guardianship records. See Illinois Probate Records wiki page for more information about using probate records. The following copies of probate records are available:

Available abstracts:

Repositories[edit | edit source]

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 Morgan County are kept, see the Morgan 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]

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.

The University of Illinois at Springfield (UIS) houses the records for Morgan County. The link will help you find and use the records. There address is:

Illinois Regional Archives Depository
University of Illinois at Springfield Region
One University Plaza, MS BRK 140
Springfield, Illinois 62703-5407

Libraries[edit | edit source]

Jacksonville Public Library 

201 W. College Ave.
Jacksonville, IL 62650

Hours: M–Th 9 a.m.–9 p.m. Fri 9 a.m.–6 p.m. Sat 9 a.m.–5 p.m.

Special Collections Room: collection is closed stack, but books and records can be requested by staff  any hours the libray is open. Collection includes city diretories, Morgan County atlas and plat books, cemetery indexes, local history vertical files.

Jacksonville Area Genealogical and Historical Society
416 South Main Street
Jacksonville, Illinois 62650-2904
Phone: 1–217–245-9623
Call for library hours.

M-C River Valley Public Library District (no website)
304 Main
Meredosia, IL 62665

Wavery Public Library
291 North Pearl Street
Waverly, Illinois 62692

Social Groups Online[edit | edit source]

Societies[edit | edit source]

  • Jacksonville Area Genealogical and Historical Society
    PO Box 14
    416 S Main St
    Jacksonville, IL 62651
    Phone 217-245-9623
  • Meredosia Area Historical and Genealogical Society
    PO Box 304
    Main Street
    Meredosia IL 62665
    Phone 217-584-1356
  • Morgan Area Genealogical Association
    PO Box 84
    Jacksonville 62651-0084
  • Morgan County Historical Society
    PO Box 913
    ​Jacksonville, Illinois 62651

Taxation[edit | edit source]

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.

Vital records consist of birth, death, marriage and divorce records. Original birth and death certificates recorded since 1878 are kept by the Morgan County Clerk while those recorded after 1916 are kept by the Illinois Department of Public Health. with a copy to the County Clerk. Original marriage records are kept by the County Clerk from 1827 to the present. Original divorce records are generally in the office of the Circuit Court Clerk.

Copies of original records may be accessed through the Family History Library and the Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD) located at the University of Illinois Springfield (UIS) - search for Morgan County records. For information on how to use IRAD see the UIS IRAD Wiki page. In addtion, various abstracts and indexes are available as indicated.

Birth Records[edit | edit source]

Marriage Records[edit | edit source]

Early marriages begin with license #181. Earlier records are lost because of a courthouse fire. The following copy of Morgan County records is available:

The following indexes to marriages in Morgan County are available:

Online Resources

Death Records[edit | edit source]

The following copies of Morgan County records are available:

Online resources

Researching Your Roots in Central Illinois offers the following free online death indexes:

Websites[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Morgan 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. Daniel Morgan
  3. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  4. Wikipedia contributors, "Morgan County," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Illinois 04/19/2017.
  5. Wikipedia contributors, "Morgan County, Illinois," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Illinois, accessed 18 March 2020.