Adams County, Colorado Genealogy
This article is about a northeast Colorado county. For other uses, see Adams.
Guide to Adams County, Colorado ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.
- 1 County Information
- 2 Resources
- 2.1 Bible Records
- 2.2 Biographies
- 2.3 Business, Commerce, and Occupations
- 2.4 Cemeteries
- 2.5 Census Records
- 2.6 Church Records
- 2.7 Court Records
- 2.8 Directories
- 2.9 Emigration and Immigration
- 2.10 Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups
- 2.11 Funeral Homes
- 2.12 Genealogies
- 2.13 Guardianship
- 2.14 Land and Property Records
- 2.15 Local Histories
- 2.16 Maps and Gazetteers
- 2.17 Migration
- 2.18 Military Records
- 2.19 Naturalization and Citizenship
- 2.20 Newspapers
- 2.21 Obituaries
- 2.22 Other Records
- 2.23 Periodicals
- 2.24 Probate Records
- 2.25 School Records
- 2.26 Tax Records
- 2.27 Vital Records
- 3 Research Facilities
- 4 Societies
- 5 Websites
- 6 Research Guides
- 7 References
County Information[edit | edit source]
Description[edit | edit source]
The County was named for Alva Adams, a former Governor of Colorado. The County is located in the northern area of the state.
County Courthouse[edit | edit source]
Adams County Courthouse
450 S 4th Avenue
Brighton, CO 80901-3196
Adams County Website
County Clerk / Recorder
4430 S. Adams County Pkwy.
Brighton, CO 80601
County Clerk has marriage and land records from 1902, some burial records, some land records from Arapahoe County prior to 1901, school census 1902-1964 and military discharge records,
17th Judicial District Court Clerk has divorce records;
Probate Court has probate records; Hall of Justice has court records 
Adams County, Colorado 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.
Record Loss[edit | edit source]
There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.
Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]
Populated Places[edit | edit source]
For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit Hometown Locator. Hometown Locator The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county: 
History Timeline[edit | edit source]
Resources[edit | edit source]
The Colorado State Archives has the following records available for Adams County, Colorado Genealogy in this online database Archives Search. For a full list of online holdings, click here.
1880-1939 Divorce Index
1883-1900 Mine Accidents, Non - fatal
1936-1942 Civilian Conservation Corps Enrollments
1966-1968 Vietnam Deaths 1904-1913 Adams County Divorces 1929-1943 Adams County Inheritance Tax 1933-1936 Adams County Old Age Pension 1913-1935 Adams County Teachers 1903-1938 Adams County Wills
Bible Records[edit | edit source]
Biographies[edit | edit source]
Business, Commerce, and Occupations[edit | edit source]
Cemeteries[edit | edit source]
Census Records[edit | edit source]
In 1860, present-day Colorado was enumerated in the Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, and Utah Territories. Colorado Territory was created in 1861 and was enumerated as such in the 1870 Census. A state census was taken in 1885 for Colorado. See links listed below.
State and Territory Census Records[edit | edit source]
- 1860 - United States Census, 1860 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images; Colorado was included in the 1860 Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, and Utah Territories Censuses
- 1870 - United States Census, 1870 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images; Colorado Territory Census
- 1885 - Colorado State Census, 1885 at FamilySearch - Index and images
- 1885 - Colorado State Census, 1885 at Ancestry - ($), Index and images
Federal Census Records[edit | edit source]
- 1860-1940 Colorado Census Records from 1860 to 1940 at FamilySearch.org — index/images
Church Records[edit | edit source]
Church records vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. They may contain information about members of the congregation, such as age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information and maiden names; and death date. For general information about Colorado denominations, view the Colorado Church Records wiki page.
Online Church Records
- 1743-1970 - U.S., Presbyterian Records, 1743-1970 at Ancestry — ($); Index and images; Dates vary for each county
Court Records[edit | edit source]
Numerous records are available at Colorado Archives. To use this link scroll down the page to where it asks for Record Type. Click there and scroll down the list to the records you want and select. The next field asks for county. Select the county you want and then click on Search. You can narrow the search by adding the additional information it asks for.
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 Colorado Land and Property for additional information about early Colorado land grants.
After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse, where current records are also housed.
Online Land Records
- Colorado DPA Land Records - Index only; Choose Record Type, and search either "Land Patents" or "Land Records."
- Land Patent Search - index to federal patents and homesteads on the Bureau of Land Management website, some images available
- 1796-1907 - U.S. General Land Office Records, 1796-1907 at Ancestry - index, info taken from Bureau of Land Management website
- 1863-1908 - U.S. Homestead Records 1863-1908 at Ancestry.com - ($), index and images
- 1862-1908 - Denver Land Office Records, 1862-1908 at Ancestry.com - ($), index only
For more information see Colorado Land and Property
Local Histories[edit | edit source]
Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]
- Interactive Formation Boundary Map of Colorado - shows boundary changes for Colorado Counties
- Colorado Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library
- Map of Adams County, Colorado - on the Adams County website
Migration[edit | edit source]
Military Records[edit | edit source]
Online Collections[edit | edit source]
- Colorado State Archives Veterans Grave Registration Index at the Colorado State Archives website - Index only; In the Record Type field, select, Military - Grave
- Colorado Civil War Casualties Index at the Colorado State Archives website - Index only; In the Record Type field, select, Civil War Casualty
- 1861-1865 - Colorado State Archives Volunteers Transcript of Record Index (1861-1865) at the Colorado State Archives website - Index only; In the Record Type field, select, Transcript of Record
Spanish-American War (1898)
- 1898 - Colorado Volunteers in the Spanish American War, 1898 - at the Colorado State Archives website - Index only; In the Record Type field, select, Span-Am War Soldiers
World War I
- 1916-1919 - Colorado State Archives Denver War Risk Insurance Applicants, 1916-1919 - at the Colorado State Archives website - Index only; In the Record Type field, select, War Risk Insurance
- 1917-1922 - Colorado State Archives World War I Civilian Service Questionnaires, 1917-1922 - at the Colorado State Archives website - Index only; In the Record Type field, select, WWI Questionnaire
- 1917-1918 - Colorado Soldiers in WWI, 1917-1918 at Ancestry.com — ($), index
- 1966 & 1968 - Colorado State Archives Vietnam War Casualties - June-December 1966 & January-December 1968 - at the Colorado State Archives website - Index only; In the Record Type field, select, Vietnam Deaths
For further information see Colorado Military Records.
Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]
- 1868-1990 - Colorado, State and Federal Naturalization Records, 1868-1990 at Ancestry ($); Index and images
- 1876-1990 - Colorado Naturalization Records, 1876-1990 at FamilySearch - Browseable images only; District Court records
Newspapers[edit | edit source]
For more information, see Colorado Newspapers.
Colorado Newspapers Online
- Colorado Online Historical Newspapers online - in the Colorado Historic Newspaper Collection by the Colorado State Library
- Colorado Newspapers at Ancestry.com - ($)
- GenealogyBank - ($), contains images of Colorado newspapers
- Newspaper Archive - ($), contains images of Colorado newspapers
- Chronicling America - contains images of some Colorado newspapers; searching tips
- Elephind - Free; search engine that retrieves newspaper images from other free newspaper websites
- Aurora Sentinel
Colorado Newspaper Catalogs
- U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690-Present on Chronicling America - contains a list of all known newspapers and the dates they cover; once you locate a newspaper name, contact the local library to see if they have copies of the newspaper
Obituaries[edit | edit source]
Other Records[edit | edit source]
Periodicals[edit | edit source]
Probate Records[edit | edit source]
Probate records have been kept by the county courts. Colorado probate records include bonds, affidavits, letters, claims, appraisals, fee accounts, minutes, judgments, dockets, calendars, case files, and wills. The Family History Library does not have copies of probate records from Colorado.
You may obtain copies of documents from the clerk's office in the county courthouse.
- 1875 – 1974 Colorado Wills and Probate Records 1875-1974 at Ancestry.com — index and images $
School Records[edit | edit source]
Colorado State Archives has put an index of the Adams County teachers who were approved to teach in the county by the County Superintendent of Schools for the years 1913-1935 on-line. This list shows their name and may include the date, type of teaching certificate they possess and the town of residence.
Tax Records[edit | edit source]
Colorado tax records complement land records and can be used as supplements to censuses. There may be gaps of several years in the records. To find tax records in the FamilySearch Catalog, do a Place Search for the county.
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 Vital Records Section Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment or the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred.
For some online statewide indexes, see the FamilySearch Historical Record Collections for Colorado.
For early vital records check Colorado State Archives, Historical Records Index
Birth[edit | edit source]
Birth records may become public records when 100 years have elapsed after the date of birth. EXCEPTION: The birth record of any individual who is known to be currently alive will remain confidential even if they are 100 years of age or greater. 
To obtain a recent birth certificate for yourself or a near relative, contact the Tri-County Health Department by calling 303-220-9200 or visiting:
6162 S. Willow Drive #100
Greenwood Village, CO 80111
Marriage[edit | edit source]
The Adams County Recorder's office will search their indexes if you call or come in to the office. If a record is found, a copy can be purchased in person or by mail. Call 720-523-6020.
- 1784-2007 - Colorado, United States Marriages at FindMyPast — index $
- 1809-2011 - Western States Marriage Index, 1809-2011 - Index, incomplete, list of counties included
- 1853-2006 - Colorado Statewide Marriage Index, 1853-2006 at FamilySearch.org - Index and images
- 1862-2006 - Colorado, County Marriages and State Indexes, 1862-2006 at Ancestry ($), Index and images
- 1864-1995 - Colorado, County Marriages, 1864-1995 at FamilySearch - Index and images
- 1900-1939 - Colorado, Statewide Marriage Index, 1900-1939 at Ancestry.com - ($); Browseable images of original index
Death[edit | edit source]
Death records may become public records when 75 years have elapsed after the date of death. 
To obtain a recent death certificate for yourself or a near relative, contact the Tri-County Health Department by calling 303-220-9200 or visiting:
6162 S. Willow Drive #100
Greenwood Village, CO 80111
Divorce[edit | edit source]
- 1851-1985 Colorado, Divorce Index, 1851-1985 at Ancestry - ($); Index only
- 1900-1939 - Colorado Statewide Divorce Index, 1900-1939 at FamilySearch - Browseable images of original index
- 1904-1913 The Colorado State Archives has put a name only Index to the Adams County Divorce Records for the period 1904-1913 on-line.
For information regarding other divorce documents, please contact the Adams County Court System at 303-659-1161.
Research Facilities[edit | edit source]
Archives[edit | edit source]
Family History Centers[edit | edit source]
Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance and free access to premium genealogical websites. In addition, many centers have free how-to genealogy classes.
- Aurora Colorado Family History Center - 950 Laredo St. Aurora, CO 80011
- Brighton Colorado Family History Center
- Denver Colorado North Family History Center
Libraries[edit | edit source]
Museums[edit | edit source]
Societies[edit | edit source]
Brighton Genealogy Society
343 S. 21st Street
Brighton, CO 80601-2525
Adams County Genealogical Society
9209 Dorthy Blvd.
Aurora Genealogical Society
P.O. Box 31732
Aurora, CO 80041-0732
Websites[edit | edit source]
- Adams County COGenWeb Project
- FamilySearch Catalog - The FamilySearch catalog contains descriptions and access information for all genealogical materials (including books, online materials, microfilm, microfiche, and publications) in their collection. Use Historical Records to search for specific individuals in genealogical records
- Adams County, Colorado Genealogy and Family History (Linkpendium)
Research Guides[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Genealogy Trails History Group, "Adams County, Colorado Genealogy and History", http://genealogytrails.com/colo/adams/ 6/27/2017.
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Adams County, Colorado. Page 97At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Adams County, Colorado. Page 97 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), 92.
- The Red Book, American State, County, and Town Sources. Edited by Alice Eichholz. (Ancestry, Provo; 3d ed, 2004.) Colorado article by Birdie Monk Holzclaw and Marsha Hoffman Rising. page 92.
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Wikipedia contributors, "Adams County, Colorado," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adams_County,_Colorado, accessed 05/10/2017.
- William Thorndale and William Dollarhide, Map Guide to the U.S. Federal Censuses (Bountiful, UT: American Genealogical Lending Library, 1985), page 51-54; Alice Eichholz, ‘’Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources,’’ 3rd ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 2004), 86. Free online version; FHL Book 973 D27rb 2004; WorldCat entry.
- William Thorndale and William Dollarhide, Map Guide to the U.S. Federal Censuses (Bountiful, UT: American Genealogical Lending Library, 1985), page 54.
- Letter from Colorado State Registrar, Dated September 1, 2011. Policy Number 2011- 08. http://www.colorado.gov