Rains County, Texas Genealogy

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Guide to Rains County Texas ancestry, family history, and genealogy research page. Birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

Rains County, Texas
Map of Texas highlighting Rains County
Location in the state of Texas, United States Genealogy
Map of the U.S. highlighting Texas
Location of Texas in the U.S.
Founded 9 June, 1870
County Seat Emory
Address Rains County Courthouse
PO Box 187
Emory, TX 75440-0187
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County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The County was named for Emory Rains, a Texas state legislator. The County is located in the northeast area of the state.[1]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Rains County Courthouse
PO Box 187;
Emory, TX 75440-0187
Phone: 903.473.2461 

County Clerk has birth records from 1902, divorce records
from 1903, marriage, divorce and land records from 1880
and probate records from 1894[2]

County Clerk

P.O. Box 1150
Emory 75440
Phone: 903-473-5000
Fax: 903-473-5086

District Clerk

P.O. Box 187
Emory 75440
Phone: 903-473-5000 (Ext: 101)
Fax: 903-473-5008

Rains County's first courthouse was a log building. It was used until a two-room courthouse was built in 1871; this second courthouse burned in 1879. The log building was again used as a temporary courthouse until two-story building could be built in 1884. The 1884 courthouse burned in 1908. Rains County's current courthouse, shown at right, is the county's fourth Courthouse. It was built in 1908.

Rains County Courthouse
167 E. Quitman Street
P. O. Box 158
Emory, Texas 75440

Rains County Government Website

Rains County, Texas Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[3]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1902 1880 1902 1880 1880 1894 1829
*Statewide registration for births and deaths began in 1903.
General compliance by the 1930s.

History[edit | edit source]

1840's--The first Anglo-American arrived in the 1840's.

Parent County[edit | edit source]

1870--Rains County was created 9 June 1870 from Hopkins, Hunt, and Wood Counties.

  • County seat: Emory [4]

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

1879 - Rains County Courthouse, built in 1871, burned; All county records were destroyed.
1908 - Rains County Courthouse, built in 1884, burned. County records were save in a fireproof vault.

Places / Localities[edit | edit source]

Town/city records in the FamilySearch Catalog

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
  • Ginger
  • Bright Star
  • Flats

‡This populated place also has portions in an adjacent county or counties

Neighboring Counties[edit | edit source]

Hopkins  • Hunt  • Van Zandt  • Wood

Resources[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Cemetery records often reveal birth, marriage, death, relationship, military, and religious information.

Tombstone Transcriptions Online Tombstone Transcriptions in Print List of Cemeteries in the county
FindAGrave Family History Library FindAGrave
Linkpendium WorldCat Tombstone Project
BillionGraves (name) Cemeteries of TX
GenWeb Archives Texas Cemeteries
BillionGraves Interment
TXGenWeb FamilySearch Places
Names in Stone
See Texas Cemeteries for more information.

Census[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1880 3,035
1890 3,909 28.8%
1900 6,127 56.7%
1910 6,787 10.8%
1920 8,099 19.3%
1930 7,114 −12.2%
1940 7,334 3.1%
1950 4,266 −41.8%
1960 2,993 −29.8%
1970 3,752 25.4%
1980 4,839 29.0%
1990 6,715 38.8%
2000 9,139 36.1%
2010 10,914 19.4%
Source: "Wikipedia.org".

Church[edit | edit source]

List of Churches and Church Parishes

Court[edit | edit source]

Land[edit | edit source]

After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions, including deeds and mortgages, have been recorded by the county. You can obtain copies of these land records by writing to the county clerk at the county courthouse. For more information, see Texas Land and Property.

The FamilySearch Catalog lists microfilm copies of deeds, trust deeds, and mortgages of many counties.


Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Local histories are available for Rains County, Texas Genealogy. County histories may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories, see the wiki page section Texas Local Histories.

  • Early Days in Texas and Rains County, 1917 by William Oscar Hebison and Ambrose Fitzgerald.
  • 100th Anniversary of Rains County, 1970
  • Rains County History from the Handbook of Texas Online

Maps[edit | edit source]

Hunt CountyHopkins CountyWood CountyVan Zandt CountyTX RAINS.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Military[edit | edit source]

Mexican-American War[edit | edit source]
Civil War[edit | edit source]
World War I[edit | edit source]

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Rains County, Texas Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:

TX Newspaper Abstracts (For instructions see WorldCat Online Catalog).

Probate[edit | edit source]

Probate records of Texas, United States Genealogy have been kept by the probate clerk in each county courthouse. You can obtain copies of the records from the clerk's office. In most counties, all information pertaining to a probate case is recorded in the "probate minutes."

Content: Probate Records may give the decedent's date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, neighbors, associates, relatives, and their places of residence.

Record types: Wills, estates, guardianships, naturalizations, marriage, adoption, and birth and death records.

See the Wiki page Texas Probate Records for information about how to use probate records.

Online Probate Indexes and Records

Taxation[edit | edit source]

Texas 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 Texas Taxation.

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Birth[edit | edit source]

Online Birth Indexes and Records

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Online Marriage Indexes and Records

Death[edit | edit source]

Online Death Indexes and Records

[edit | edit source]

Societies and Libraries[edit | edit source]

Organization for the Preservation of Historical and Genealogical Records
email:[1] P Vinson President
Canton, TX
This group will go to county courthouses, churches and other places where old documents and records are housed. They either scan the very old records or they transcribe those old documents.

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

Websites[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Wikipedia contributors, "Rains, Texas" in "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rains_County,_Texas. accessed 11/25/2019
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Rains County, Texas. Page 672 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Rains County, Texas . Page 658-677 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), 655-665.
  4. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  5. Wikipedia contributors, "Rains County, Texas," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rains_County,_Texas, Last accessed 19 August 2019.


Rains county; PO Box 187; Emory, TX 75440-0187; Ph. 903.473.2461 Details: (Co Clk has b rec from 1902, d rec from 1903, m, div & land rec from 1880 & pro rec from 1894)