Chautauqua County, Kansas Genealogy

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United States
Chautaugua County

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

County Facts
County seat: Sedan
Organized: March 3, 1875
Parent County(s): Howard (Old) [1]
Neighboring Counties
Cowley  • Elk  • Montgomery  • Osage (OK)  • Washington (OK)
See County Maps
Location Map
200px-Map of Kansas highlighting Chautauqua County svg.bmp

County Information


The County was named for Chautauqua County, New York, the birthplace of Edward Jaquins, a member of the Kansas House who in 1875 introduced the bill dividing Howard County into Elk and Chautauqua.[2] The County has Sedan as its seat and the County was created March 25, 1875. The County is located in the south central area of the state.[3]

County Courthouse

Chautauqua County Courthouse
215 N. Chautauqua Street
Sedan, Kansas 67361-1397
Phone: 316.725.3282
Chautauqua County Website

Register of Deeds has death and burial records from 1871, land records from 1870 and military records from 1940.
Probate Judge has marriage and probate records.
Clerk District Court has divorce and court records. [1]

Chautauqua County, Kansas Record Dates

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
1886 1870 1871 1871 1870 1875 1855
Statewide registration for births and deaths started in 1911. General compliance by 1917.[5]

Record Loss

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

Boundary Changes

Populated Places

The following are locations in Chautauqua County, Kansas:[6]

Unincorporated communities
  • Boston (no longer exists)
  • Cloverdale
  • Grafton
  • Hale
  • Hewins
  • Jonesburg (Jonesburgh)
  • Layton (no longer exists)
  • Leeds (no longer exists)
  • Lowe (Gibbs)
  • Matanzas (no longer exists)
  • Belleville
  • Caneyville
  • Center
  • Harrison
  • Hendricks
  • Jefferson
  • Lafayette
  • Little Caney
  • Salt Creek
  • Sedan
  • Summit
  • Washington
Ghost towns

History Timeline


Bible Records


Business, Commerce, and Occupations


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

Census Records

Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1880 11,072
1890 12,297 11.1%
1900 11,804 −4.0%
1910 11,429 −3.2%
1920 11,598 1.5%
1930 10,352 −10.7%
1940 9,233 −10.8%
1950 7,376 −20.1%
1960 5,956 −19.3%
1970 4,642 −22.1%
1980 5,016 8.1%
1990 4,407 −12.1%
2000 4,359 −1.1%
2010 3,669 −15.8%
Source: "".

Kansas became a territory in 1854 and the first territory census taken was in 1855. It was also enumerated as Kansas Territory in the 1860 Federal Census, although there were 15 counties that were marked with "no population" in them. The state continued to take state censuses after it was admitted to the Union in 1861.[7] See links listed below.

State and Territorial Census Records

Federal Census Records

The 1870 Census was the first Federal Census taken for Kansas after it became a state in 1861.[8] For links to Federal Census indexes, see Kansas Census.

Church Records

Most church records are held by individual churches. For contact information, check a phone directory, such as SearchBug or Dex Knows. Some denominations are gathering their records into a central repository. For more information about these major repositories, see Kansas Church Records.

Court Records


Emigration and Immigration

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups

Funeral Homes



Land and Property Records

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

Online Land Records

For more information see Kansas Land and Property

Local Histories

Local histories are available for Chautauqua County, Kansas 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 Kansas Local Histories.

Maps and Gazetteers

Chautauqua CountyMontgomery CountyWashington County, OklahomaOsage County, OklahomaCowley CountyElk CountyChautauqua, Kansas.JPG
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Military Records

Civil War

  • For information about Civil War records see Howard County.

Online Collections

These collections are unique to Kansas. You will find nationwide databases for military records on U.S. Military Online Genealogy Records and Kansas Military Records.

Collections Covering Multiple Wars

Civil War

Spanish-American War (1898)

World War I

World War II

Korean War

Vietnam War

For further information see Kansas Military Records.

Naturalization and Citizenship


For more information, see Kansas Newspapers.

Kansas Newspapers Online

Kansas Newspaper Catalogs


Other Records

Voter Records


Probate Records

In most counties in Kansas, probate records have been kept by the county judge. They include wills, inventories, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, and dockets. The records are available at the county courthouse.

The FamilySearch Catalog lists films of probate records. To find the records for this county, use the Place Search for Kansas, Chautauqua and click Probate records.

Online Records

School Records

Tax Records

Kansas tax records complement land records and can be used to supplement the years between censuses. Tax lists were usually made every year, however, there may be gaps of several years. For more information, see the wiki page Kansas Taxation.

Vital Records

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 Kansas Office of Vital Statistics or the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred. See also Kansas Vital Records. For information about restrictions and costs for certificates, see the CDC Where to Write for Vital Records site.





Research Facilities


Family History Centers

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.




Chatauqua County Historical and Genealogical Society
115 West Main
PO Box 227
Sedan 67361


  • USGenWeb project. May have maps, name indexes, history or other information for this county. Select the state, then the county.
  • 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

Research Guides


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Chautauqua County, Kansas. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. Genealogy Trails History Group, “Chautauqua County, Alabama Genealogy and History”, " 7/25/2017."
  3. Wikipedia contributors, "Chautauqua, Kansas," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, ",_Kansas" 7/25/2017.
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Chautauqua County, Kansas. Page 248 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), 234.
  5. “Kansas Research Outline”, (Salt Lake City, Utah: Family History Department, 2000), 40.
  6. Wikipedia contributors, "Chautauqua County, Kansas," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Kansas#Communities, accessed 9/11/2017.
  7. William Thorndale and William Dollarhide, Map Guide to the U.S. Federal Censuses (Bountiful, UT: American Genealogical Lending Library, 1985), page 118-119.
  8. William Thorndale and William Dollarhide, Map Guide to the U.S. Federal Censuses (Bountiful, UT: American Genealogical Lending Library, 1985), page 119.