DeSoto Parish, Louisiana Genealogy
Guide to DeSoto Parish, Louisiana ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.
|DeSoto Parish, Louisiana|
Location in the state of Louisiana
Location of Louisiana in the U.S.
|Founded||April 1, 1843|
- 1 Parish Information
- 2 Parish Courthouse
- 3 Places / Localities
- 4 Resources
- 4.1 African American
- 4.2 Archives and Libraries
- 4.3 Bible Recortds
- 4.4 Biographies
- 4.5 Cemeteries
- 4.6 Census
- 4.7 Church
- 4.8 Court
- 4.9 Land
- 4.10 Local Histories
- 4.11 Maps
- 4.12 Military
- 4.13 Newspapers
- 4.14 Obituaries
- 4.15 Probate
- 4.16 Schools
- 4.17 Taxation
- 4.18 Vital Records
- 5 Societies and Libraries
- 6 Websites
- 7 References
The County was named for the settler, Marcel DeSoto. The County has Mansfield as its seat and the County was created 1843. The County is located in the northwest area of the state.
DeSoto Parish, Louisiana Record Dates
- Named for Hernando deSoto (small "d"), the Spaniard who explored the future southeastern United States, discovered and named the Mississippi River.
- The first Parish courthouse was a log house.
- 1 April 1843: DeSoto Parish was created from Natchitoches and Caddo Parishes.
Parish seat: Mansfield 
- Eastern part of the parish was set off 2 March 1871 to form Red River Parish
For animated maps illustrating Louisiana Parish boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Louisiana Parish Boundary Maps" (1805-1990) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.
There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.
Places / Localities
- City: Mansfield
- Towns: Keachi . Logansport . Stonewall
- Villages: Grand Cane . Longstreet . South Mansfield . Stanley
Neighboring Parishes or Counties
Archives and Libraries
- DeSoto Parish Bible Records (LAGenWeb Project)
- Index to DeSoto Parish Biographies (LAGenWeb Project)
- Index to DeSoto Parish Biographies (USGenWeb Archives)
- DeSoto Parish Biographies (Genealogy Trails)
The following web sites may have additional information on DeSoto Parish cemeteries.
- Interment.net Louisiana cemetery records by Parish.
- African American Cemeteries ~ listing by county
|De Soto Parish Census Data|
- Louisiana Census Images ~ USGenWeb Census Images Project
- DeSoto Parish Census Records (USGenWeb Archives)
- DeSoto Parish Census Transcriptions (LAGenWeb Project)
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 Louisiana denominations, view the Louisiana Church Records wiki page.
- Louisiana Historical Church Information
- Directory of Churches in Louisiana ~ by city ~ Church Angel
- DeSoto Parish Church Records (USGenWeb Archives)
- 1843-1909 - Index of Succession Records (Including Tutorship), DeSoto Parish, Louisiana (LAGenWeb Project)
- DeSoto Parish Court Records (USGenWeb Archives)
- DeSoto Parish Civil Court Records (LAGenWeb Project)
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 Louisiana Land and Property for additional information about early Louisiana land ownership. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse where records are also currently housed.
Local histories are available for DeSoto Parish, Louisiana 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 Louisiana Local Histories.
- Louisiana Museums
- DeSoto Parish History (LAGenWeb Project)
- DeSoto Parish History Records (USGenWeb Archives)
- Maps of Louisiana (1805-1990)
- Family Maps of DeSoto Parish, Louisiana (land patent maps) at HistoryGeo.com ($). Free surname search.
- USGW Digital Map Collection ~ USGenWeb Project
- Louisiana Military History Online
- DeSoto Parish Military Links (LAGenWeb Archives)
- DeSoto Parish Military Records (USGenWeb Archives)
- 1861-1865 - Louisiana Civil War Service Records of Confederate Soldiers, 1861-1865 at FamilySearch — index
- 1861-1865 - Louisiana Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, 1861-1865 at FamilySearch — index
- 1883 - DeSoto Parish Pensioners on the Rolls as of January 1, 1883 (Genealogy Trails)
- 1898-1950 - Louisiana Confederate Pensions, 1898-1950 at FamilySearch — images
Civil War Battle
The following Civil War battles were fought in DeSoto Parish:
- April 8, 1864 = Mansfield, also known as Sabine Cross-Roads or Pleasant Grove
- April 9, 1864 = Pleasant Hill
- Map showing Civil War battles in Louisiana.
World War I
World War II
- 1940-1945 - Louisiana First Registration Draft Cards, compiled 1940-1945 at FamilySearch — index and images
Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as DeSoto Parish, Louisiana Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:
- DeSoto Parish Obituaries and Death Notices (Genealogy Trails)
- index to DeSoto Parish Obituaries (USGenWeb Archives)
- DeSoto Parish Obituaries (LAGenWeb Project)
Probate records before 1845 were kept in probate courts. Since 1845, they have been kept by the DeSoto Parish, Louisiana Genealogy clerk of the district court. Many of the probate records are included in the notarial records with the deeds and mortgages. In some parishes they are known as “succession” records.
See the Wiki page Louisiana Probate Records for more information about probate records in Louisiana.
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, and adoptions.
Louisiana Probate Records ~ information on.
Online Probate Records
- 1756-1984 - Louisiana Wills and Probate Records 1756-1984 at Ancestry.com Ancestry.com — index and images $
- 1843-1909 - Index of Succession Records , DeSoto Parish (LAGenWeb Project)
- DeSoto Parish Wills and Probate Documents (Genealogy Trails)
Louisiana tax records can be used in place of missing censuses and provide lists of residents during years between censuses. There may be gaps of several years. For more information, see Louisiana Taxation.
- 1861 Tax List - Slave Owners of nine or more slaves in 1861. (USGenWeb Archives)
Louisiana statewide registration of birth and death records began in 1911. Births and deaths are kept by the Louisiana Vital Records Registry. Marriages were recorded by each parish, and the records are at the parish clerk of court office. See also How to order Louisiana Vital Records or order electronically online.
See Louisiana Vital Records for more information on getting Louisiana records.
- Louisiana Records and Statistics Information ~ where and how to order information.
- DeSoto Parish Vital Records (USGenWeb Archives)
- To 1850 - Early Desoto Parish Marriages (LAGenWeb Project)
- 1837-1957 - Louisiana, Parish Marriages, 1837-1957 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1843-1905 - Some Marriages of DeSoto Parish LA (list is not complete) (LAGenWeb Project)
- 1850-1875, 1894-1960 - Louisiana Deaths, 1850-1875, 1894-1960 at FamilySearch — index and images
- DeSoto Parish Deaths (LAGenWeb Project)
Societies and Libraries
Desoto Historical Society
PO Box 447
Desoto Historical Society
PO Box 300
Stonewall, LA 71078-0300
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.
- DeSoto Parish, LA History, Records, Facts and Genealogy
- Louisiana Genealogy Network Community on Google+
- Louisiana Genealogy Network Group on Facebook
- DeSoto Parish, USGenWeb Archives
- FamilySearch.org FamilySearch Catalog for DeSoto Parish.
- The DeSoto Parish LAGenWeb Project, an member of The LAGenWeb Project, an affiliate of The USGenWeb Project.
- DeSoto Parish, Louisiana Genealogy and Family History (Linkpendium)
- DeSoto Parish, Louisiana, Genealogy and History (Genealogy Trails)
- DeSoto Parish LA Genealogy (LDS Genealogy)
- Wikipedia contributors, "DeSoto, Louisiana," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DeSoto_Parish,_Louisiana."
- Alice Eichholz, Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, Revised ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1992), 264-278. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27rb 1992
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. DeSoto Parish, Louisiana p 290 (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- United States Census Bureau. "De Soto Parish Quickfacts". http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/22/22031.html. Retrieved 2008-02-02.
- United States Census Bureau. "Louisiana Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". http://www.census.gov/population/cencounts/la190090.txt. Retrieved 2008-02-02.
- Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State
- Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State