DeKalb County, Georgia Genealogy

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DeKalb County

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


DeKalb County, Georgia
Seal of DeKalb County, Georgia
Map of Georgia highlighting DeKalb County
Location in the state of Georgia
Founded 9 December 1822[1]
Parent County Henry County, Georgia
Gwinnett County, Georgia
Fayette County, Georgia
Newton County, Georgia
County Seat Decatur
DeKalb County Court House Decatur, Georgia.jpg
Address 556 North McDonough Street
Decatur, Georgia 30030
Named for: The county is named after Revolutionary War hero Johann de Kalb (1721-1780), a German baron.[2]
Johann de Kalb.JPG

County Information

DeKalb County, Georgia Record Dates

Beginning Dates for DeKalb County, Georgia Genealogy Government Records
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate



County Courthouse

DeKalb County Courthouse
1300 Commerce Drive;
Decatur, GA 30030-3356
Phone: 404.371.2881

Clerk Superior Court has divorce, court and land records from 1842; Probate Court has marriage and probate records from 1842.[3]

Clerk of Superior Court
556 N. McDonough St.
Judicial Tower Annex Room G-130
Decatur, GA 30030
Telephone: (404) 371-2836
Fax: (404) 371-4492

Probate Court of DeKalb County
1100 Judicial Tower
556 North McDonough Street
Decatur, GA 30030
Telephone: 404 371-2718
Fax: 404-371-7055


Parent County

Boundary Changes

DeKalb County was created on 9 December 1822 from portions of Fayette, Gwinnett, and Henry Counties. It gained additional land from these counties during the 1820s as well as from Newton County. DeKalb County gave up land to Campbell, Cherokee, Coweta, Fulton, Gwinnett, Milton, and Rockdale Counties throughout the 19th century.[4]

For animated maps illustrating Georgia county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Georgia County Boundary Maps" (1758-1932) may be viewed for free at the website.

For more information see Georgia Counties: Their Changing Boundaries (Georgia Archives)

Variant Spellings

Record Loss


1842 The DeKalb County Courthouse burned on 9 January and all records were destroyed, except one minute book for the Superior Court, and one minute book for the Inferior Court.[5] [6] A handful of records recorded after the fire for pre-fire events are also available.

1916 The newer DeKalb County Courthouse burned on 13 September, but damage to records was limited thanks to a fire-proof vault.[6]

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


  • Cities: Atlanta, Avondale Estates, Chamblee, Clarkston, Decatur, Doraville, Dunwoody, Lithonia, Pine Lake, Stone Mountain.
  • Communities: Belvedere Park, Candler-McAfee, Druid Hills, Gresham Park, North Druid Hills, Toco Hills, Panthersville, Redan, Scottdale, Tucker, Briarcliff, Brookhaven, Collinsville, Conley, Constitution, Ellenwood, Embry Hills, Mechanicsville, Mountain View, Northlake, Philadelphia, Pittsburg, Skyland, Turner Hill, Adair Park, Belmont, Carver Hills, College Heights, Columbia Park, Cross Keys, Edgewood, Emory, Flat Rock, Klondike, Kirkwood, Lenox Place, Lynwood Park, Medlock, Montreal, Nelms, Parkwood, Pea Ridge, Rehoboth, Rock Chapel, Shermantown, Silver Lake, Smokerise, Stonehaven, Sundown, Winnona Park.

Neighboring Counties

Clayton  • Fulton  • Gwinnett  • Henry  • Rockdale

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Genealogy Resources

Research Guides

African Americans

Bible Records


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

The following web site may have additional information on DeKalb County cemeteries.


Church Records

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 Georgia denominations, see the Georgia Church Records wiki page.



Land and Property

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 Georgia Land and Property for additional information about early Georgia land grants from the government. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions (generally buying and selling deeds) were usually recorded at the county courthouse and where records are currently housed.

Deed books and indexes that survived the courthouse fires are available on the ground floor of the DeKalb County Courthouse in the Clerk of the Superior Court, Real Estate Division. Land records found at the courthouse date from approximately 1840 to the present, beginning with Deed Book L.

Local Histories

Local histories are available for DeKalb County, Georgia 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 Georgia Local Histories.




Civil War

Online Records

Regiments. Service men in DeKalb County, Georgia Genealogy served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in DeKalb County, Georgia Genealogy:

- 7th Regiment, Georgia Infantry (Confederate), Company E
- 36th Regiment, Georgia Infantry (Broyles') (Confederate) , Company F
- 38th Regiment, Georgia Infantry (Confederate) , Companies A,D,and K
- 42nd Regiment, Georgia Infantry (Confederate) , Company D
- 66th Regiment, Georgia Infantry (Confederate) , Companies B,E,and H
- Georgia USGenWeb Archives Project

  • Price, Vivian. 1997. History of DeKalb County, Georgia, 1822-1900. Fernandina Beach, FL: Wolfe Pub. Co. 975.8225 H2p
  • Confederate States of America. Army. Georgia Infantry Regiment, 7th, Company E. 1961. Muster list, 1861. Salt Lake City, Utah: Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah.  Film 282789
  • Georgia. Court of Ordinary (DeKalb County). 1964. Confederate veterans pension rolls, 1890-1931. Salt Lake City, Utah: Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah.Film 365913
World War I



Newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as DeKalb County, Georgia Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:


Probate Records

Colonial courts kept some early probate records.  From 1777 to 1798 and since 1852, the court of ordinary or register of probates has kept probate and guardianship records.  The inferior court handled probate and guardianship matters from 1798 to 1852.

Many probate records to the 1930s and 1940s are at the Georgia Department of Archives and History and the Family History Library on microfilm.

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 place of residence.

Record types: Wills, estates, guardianships, naturalizations, marriage, adoption, and birth and death records (not all years).

Online Probate Records


Taxes were levied on free white males over 21 and all slaves up to age 60. These persons are referred to as "polls." Tax listings, or digests, of a county generally list the taxable landowners and other polls and the amount of tax. The records for each county are divided by militia district.

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 Georgia 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 Georgia. See also How to order Georgia Vital Records


Statewide registration of births in Georgia began in 1919 and was generally complied with by 1928. Birth records are available only to the individual or his legal representative. Birth records can be obtained by writing to:

Georgia Department of Human Resources
Vital Records Unit
47 Trinity Avenue, S.W., Room 217-H
Atlanta, GA 30334-1201
Telephone: 404-679-4702
Internet: Georgia Vital Records

The current fees for obtaining copies of the state's records are listed at

Atlanta birth records since 1887 are available from:

Fulton County Health Department
141 Prior Street
Atlanta, GA 30303
Telephone: 404-730-4000
Internet: Fulton County Health Department

Marriage Records
Death Records

Death records for 1935 to present can be obtained by writing to:

Georgia Department of Human Resources
Vital Records Unit
47 Trinity Avenue, S.W., Room 217-H
Atlanta, GA 30334-1201
Telephone: 404-679-4702
Internet: Georgia Vital Records

The current fees for obtaining copies of the state's records are listed at

  • 1849-50, 1859-60, 1869-70, 1879-80 DeKalb County, Georgia Genealogy Mortality Schedules at Ancestry ($).

Vital Record Substitutes

Voter Records

Genealogy Societies and Libraries

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. See family history center for more information. Search the online FHC directory for a nearby family history center.



  1. Bryant, Pat, and Ingrid Shields. 1983. Georgia counties, their changing boundaries. Atlanta: State Print. Office.
  2. "DeKalb County, Georgia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia." Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 Aug. 2011. <http: dekalb_county,_georgia="" wiki=""""></http:>
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), DeKalb County, Georgia. Page 154 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  4. Bryant, Pat, and Ingrid Shields. 1983. Georgia counties, their changing boundaries. Atlanta: State Print. Office.
  5. Vivian Price, History of DeKalb County, Georgia, 1822-1900 (Fernandina Beach, FL: Wolfe Pub. Co. This book is available at the DeKalb History Center, 1997).
  6. 6.0 6.1 Paul K. Graham, Georgia Courthouse Disasters (Decatur, Georgia: Genealogy Co., 2013), 26-27. At various libraries (WorldCat).
  7. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at