Shelby County, Alabama Genealogy

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

County Facts
County seat: Columbiana
Organized: February 7, 1818
Parent County(s): Montgomery[1]
Neighboring Counties
Bibb  • Chilton  • Coosa  • Jefferson  • St. Clair  • Talladega
See County Maps
Shelby County, Alabama Courthouse.jpg
Location Map
Shelby County Alabama.png
Isaac Shelby

County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The County was named in honor of Isaac Shelby, Governor of Kentucky. The county is located in the central area of the state.[2]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Shelby County Courthouse
112 N. Main St #128
PO Box 1810
Columbiana, AL 35051
Phone: 205-669-3760
Shelby County Website

Probate Judge has marriage probate and land records from 1824 [3]

Shelby County, Alabama 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 Records[4]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1902 1824 1902 1819 1824 1824 1816
*Statewide registration for births and deaths began in 1908. General compliance for births by 1927 and for deaths 1925.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

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

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

  • 1818--Shelby County was created 7 February 1818 from MontgomeryCounty.
  • County seat: Columbiana[5]

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in Shelby County:[6]

For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit Hometown Locator.

Unincorporated communities
Census-designated places

History Timeline[edit | edit source]

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

Census Records[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1820 2,416
1830 5,704 136.1%
1840 6,112 7.2%
1850 9,536 56.0%
1860 12,618 32.3%
1870 12,218 −3.2%
1880 17,236 41.1%
1890 20,886 21.2%
1900 23,684 13.4%
1910 26,949 13.8%
1920 27,097 0.5%
1930 27,576 1.8%
1940 28,962 5.0%
1950 30,362 4.8%
1960 32,132 5.8%
1970 38,037 18.4%
1980 66,298 74.3%
1990 99,358 49.9%
2000 143,293 44.2%
2010 195,085 36.1%
Source: "".

State Census

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Church records and the information they provide vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. They may contain information about members of the congregation, such as age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information and maiden names; and death date. For general information about Alabama denominations, view the Alabama Church Records wiki page.

List of Churches and Church Parishes

Court Records[edit | edit source]

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]

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents.

See Alabama Land and Property for additional information about early Alabama land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse, where records are currently housed.

To place a grant or deed on a map within context of Shelby County see:

  • Boyd, Gregory A. Family Maps of Shelby County, Alabama: with Homesteads, Roads, Waterways, Towns, Cemeteries, Railroads, and More. Norman, Okla.: Arphax Pub. Co., 2007. This is a definitive work and can be used as an index to land grants. Digital version at ($). Website includes surname index. FHL Book 976.179 E7b.

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

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

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

JeffersonSt. ClairTalladegaCoosaChiltonBibbAL SHELBY.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Migration[edit | edit source]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Multiple Wars

Civil War

Regiments. Men in Shelby 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 Shelby County:

- 2nd Regiment, Alabama Cavalry, Company B
- 7th Regiment, Alabama Cavalry, Company E
- 10th Regiment, Alabama Infantry, Company C "Cahaba Valley Boys"
- 18th Regiment, Alabama Infantry, Company I (Curry Guards)
- 20th Regiment, Alabama Infantry, Company G
- 24th Regiment, Alabama Infantry, Company H "Steele Guards"
- 25th Regiment, Alabama Infantry, Company C
- 30th Regiment, Alabama Infantry, Company D and K
- 31st Regiment, Alabama Infantry, Company G and K
- 44th Regiment, Alabama Infantry, Company D and E

World War I

World War II

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Online Probate Indexes and Records

School Records[edit | edit source]

Social Security Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

Alabama tax records complement land records and can be used to supplement the years between censuses. There may be gaps of several years in the tax records of some counties. For more information, see the wiki page Alabama Taxation.

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents. A copy or an extract of most original records can be purchased from the Alabama State Department of Health , the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred or order electronically online $.

For some online statewide indexes, see the FamilySearch Historical Record Collections for Alabama.

Birth[edit | edit source]

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Additional County Collections

Death[edit | edit source]

Divorce[edit | edit source]

Voter Registration[edit | edit source]

Research Facilities[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]

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 Shelby County. For state-wide library facilities, see Alabama Archives and Libraries.

Shelby County Public Library
Mildred B. Harrison Regional Library – System Headquarters
50 Lester Street
Columbiana, Alabama 35051

  • Albert L. Scott Library
    100 9th Street NW
    Alabaster, AL 35007
    Phone (205) 664-6822
  • Roy Downs Memorial Library
    9700 Hwy 25
    Calera AL 35040
    Phone: 205-668-7200
  • Chelsea Public Library
    16623 Highway 280
    Chelsea AL 35043
    Phone: 205-847-5750
  • Columbiana Public Library
    50 Lester Street
    Columbiana AL 35051
    Phone: 205-669-5812
  • Harpersville Public Library
    PO Box 370
    39321 Hwy 25
    Harpersville AL 35078
    Phone: 205-644-6331
  • Jane B. Holmes Library
    PO Box 262
    230 Tucker Road
    Helena AL 35080
    Phone: 205-664-8308
  • Mt. Laurel Library
    111 Olmsted Street
    Birmingham AL 35242
    Phone: 205-991-1660
  • North Shelby Library
    5521 Cahaba Valley Rd
    Birmingham AL 35242
    Phone: 205-439-5500
  • Parnell Memorial Library
    277 Park Drive
    Montevallo AL 35115
    Phone: 205-665-9207
  • Pelham Public Library
    PO Box 1627
    2000 Ball Park Road
    Pelham AL 35124
    Phone: 205-620-6418
  • Vincent McGraw Public Library
    PO Box 3
    42850 Hwy 25
    Vincent AL 35178
    Phone: 205-672-2749
  • Westover Public Library
    3312 Westover Rd
    Westover AL 35147
    Phone: 205-678-3375
  • Vernice Stoudenmire Public Library
    9905 N. Main Street
    Wilsonville AL 35186
    Phone: 205-669-6180

Museums[edit | edit source]

Societies[edit | edit source]

Hoover Historical Society
P.O. Box 360233
Hoover, Alabama 35236
Phone: 205-739-7316

Shelby County Historical Society
1854 Old Courthouse
P.O. Box 457
Columbiana, Alabama 35051

Websites[edit | edit source]

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Alabama.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. "List of Counties in Tennessee," Wikipedia.
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Alabama.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Shelby County, Alabama. Page 37 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), 33.
  5. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Alabama.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  6. Wikipedia contributors, "Shelby County, Alabama," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Alabama, accessed 26 October 2018.
  7. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at