Graham County, Arizona Genealogy
Guide to Graham County, Arizona ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, and military records.
|Graham County, Arizona|
Location in the state of Arizona
Location of Arizona in the U.S.
|Founded||March 10, 1881|
|Address||800 West Main Street|
Safford, Arizona 85546
- 1 County Information
- 2 County Courthouse
- 3 History
- 4 Places/Localities
- 5 Resources
- 5.1 Cemeteries
- 5.2 Census
- 5.3 Church
- 5.4 Court
- 5.5 Land
- 5.6 Local Histories
- 5.7 Maps
- 5.8 Military
- 5.9 Newspapers
- 5.10 Obituaries
- 5.11 Probate
- 5.12 Taxation
- 5.13 Vital Records
- 6 Societies and Libraries
- 7 Family History Centers
- 8 Websites
- 9 References
County Information[edit | edit source]
Graham County, Arizona Record Dates[edit | edit source]
County Courthouse[edit | edit source]
Graham County Courthouse
800 Main Street
Stafford, Az 85546-1414
- Clerk of Superior Court has marriage, probate, divorce and court records from 1881
- Naturalization Records 1907-1973
- County Recorder has land records 
Description[edit | edit source]
The County was named after the mountain by the same name which was named after Lt. Col James Duncan Graham, and was the first Arizona county to break the tradition of naming counties for Native Americans. The County has Safford as its seat and the County was created March 10, 1881. The County is located in the southeast area of the state.
History[edit | edit source]
Parent County[edit | edit source]
- Until 1821 - New Spain controlled land that later would become Arizona. Some records of early settlers may have been sent to an archives in Seville, Spain, or to archives in Mexico City.
- 24 Aug 1821 - The Treaty of Cordoba was signed by Spain, which recognized Mexico's independence. The land in present day Arizona became part of Mexico. Land north of the Gila River was claimed by the State of Alta California and the State of New Mexico. Land south of the Gila River was in the State of Sonora. Look for records in the Spain and Mexico Archives.
- 18 Aug 1846 - During the war with Mexico, the US took control of Santa Fe and proclaimed sovereignty over the land that later became the New Mexico Territory. Look for records in the National Archives and Records Administration, the Mexico Archives and the New Mexico State Records Center and Archives.
- 4 July 1848 - In the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo, Mexico ceded part of present day Arizona. The land south of the Gila River in present day Arizona was not ceded, it remained in control of Mexico. The land in present day Graham County was split between the US and Mexico. Look for records in the National Archives and Records Administration, the Mexico Archives and the New Mexico State Records Center and Archives.
- 9 Jan 1852 - New Mexico redefined the boundaries of previous counties and created new ones to cover all the land within its territory. Land in present-day Graham County, Arizona was once part of Socorro and Doña Ana counties of New Mexico.   Look for records in Dona Ana and Socorro counties.
- 30 Dec 1853 - The United States bought the Gadsden Purchase from Mexico. It contained land in Arizona south of the Gila River, including part of the land in present day Graham County. Look for records in the National Archives and Records Administration, the Mexico Archives, and the New Mexico State Records Center and Archives.
- 4 Aug 1854 - The land acquired in the Gadsden Purchase was officially added to New Mexico Territory, it became non-county land. Look for records in the New Mexico State Records Center and Archives.
- 3 Feb 1855 - Dona Ana County gained all the land acquired in the Gadsden Purchase. Its boundary stretched across present day Arizona to the Baja California border. This county included part of the land in present day Graham County. Look for records in Dona Ana County.
- 24 Feb 1863 - The US created the Arizona Territory from the western half of New Mexico Territory. All previous counties were discontinued for this new territory. Look for records in the Arizona State Library and New Mexico State Records Center and Archives
- 10 Nov 1864 - Arizona created Pima and Yavapai counties. Both of these counties named for Indian tribes. Look for records in Pima and Yavapai counties.
- 14 Feb 1879 - Arizona created Apache County from land in Yavapai County. This county named for the Apache Indians. Look for records in Apache and Yavapai counties.
10 Mar 1881 - Arizona created Graham County from lands in Apache and Pima counties.  County seat: Safford  This county named for Mount Graham, the highest peak in the area. Look for records in Graham, Apache and Pima counties.
Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]
See also Previous Jurisdictions to Land in Arizona showing dates the jurisdictions were created and maps. This will help in determining what jurisdiction your ancestor lived in and where the records are now located.
For animated maps illustrating Arizona county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Arizona County Boundary Maps" (1852-1993) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.
Record Loss[edit | edit source]
There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.
Places/Localities[edit | edit source]
For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit Hometown Locator. The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county:
|Native American communities|
Neighboring Counties[edit | edit source]
- Apache County, Arizona
- Cochise County, Arizona
- Gila County, Arizona
- Greenlee County, Arizona
- Navajo County, Arizona
- Pima County, Arizona
- Pinal County, Arizona
Resources[edit | edit source]
Cemeteries[edit | edit source]
The following web sites may have additional information on Graham County cemeteries.
- Interment.net Arizona cemetery records by County.
Census[edit | edit source]
For tips on accessing Graham County, Arizona Genealogy census records online, see: Arizona Census.
Church[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 Arizona denominations, view the Arizona Church Records wiki page. Church and Branch Records of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: Artesia, Ashurst, Bryce, Central, Eden, Emery, Ft. Thomas, Graham, Hubbard, Kimball, Layton (Safford), Lebanon, Mathews, Pima, Safford, Solomonsville, Thatcher, Thatcher East and Thatcher West.
List of Churches and Church Parishes
Court[edit | edit source]
Land[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 Arizona Land and Property for additional information about early Arizona land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse and where records are currently housed.
Most of the land in Arizona was originally obtained from the US federal government by patent. These General Land Office Records are searchable online and most have free images of patents to download. The minimum information needed for a search is the state where the land is located and the name of the person receiving the patent. Surveys and Land Status Records can also be searched here.
Land Records in Graham County from 1982 to the present can be searched online. Viewing older records will require a visit:
- Graham County Recorders Office
- 921 Thatcher Blvd
- Safford AZ 85546
- (928) 428-3560
Local Histories[edit | edit source]
Local histories are available for Graham County, Arizona 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 Arizona Local Histories.
Maps[edit | edit source]
Military[edit | edit source]
Civil War[edit | edit source]
- 1861-1865 - Arizona Civil War Service Records of Confederate Soldiers, 1861-1865 at FamilySearch — index - How to Use this Collection
World War II[edit | edit source]
- 1940-1945 - Arizona, World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1940-1945 at FamilySearch — index and images - How to Use this Collection
Newspapers[edit | edit source]
Graham Guardian (Safford, Ariz.) 1895-1923 is available for searching free Online. Click Browse Issues tab.
Safford Rattler (Safford, Ariz.) 1896-189? is also available Online.
Finding More Arizona Newspapers[edit source]
Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Graham County, Arizona Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:
Obituaries[edit | edit source]
- 1959-2014 - Arizona, Mesa LDS Family History Center, Obituary Index, 1959-2014 at FamilySearch — index - How to Use this Collection
Probate[edit | edit source]
From 1850 to 1864 during the territorial period, probate records of Arizona were kept by the probate courts of New Mexico. Then until 1912, the records were handled by county probate courts. Since then probate records, such as wills, claims, administrations, case files, and calendars are kept in the custody of the clerk of the superior court in the county courthouse.
The FamilySearch Catalog lists films of probate records. To find the records for this county, use the Subjects Search for Arizona, Graham - Probate records.
Online Probate Records
Taxation[edit | edit source]
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 Arizona Department of Health Services , the county clerk's office of the county where the event occurred or order electronically online.
Birth Records[edit | edit source]
Online Birth Indexes and Records
- 1855-1930 - Arizona, Birth Certificates and Indexes, 1855-1930 at FamilySearch — index and images - How to Use this Collection
- 1909-1917 - Arizona Select Births and Christenings 1909-1917 at Ancestry.com — index $
Marriage Records[edit | edit source]
Online Marriage Indexes and Records
- 1833-1949 - Arizona, United States Marriages at FindMyPast — index $
- 1864-1982 - Arizona Marriage Collection 1864-1982 at Ancestry.com — index $
- 1871-1964 - Arizona, County Marriages, 1871–1964 at FamilySearch.org — index and browse images, incomplete - How to Use this Collection
- 1881-1926 - 3,480 marriages are listed on the Western States Marriage Index.
- 1888-1908 - Arizona Select Marriages 1888-1908 at Ancestry.com — index $
Death Records[edit | edit source]
Online Death Indexes and Records
- 1910-1911 and 1933-1994 - Arizona Select Deaths and Burials 1910-1911 and 1933-1994;at Ancestry.com — index $
Societies and Libraries[edit | edit source]
Graham County Historical Society and Museum
3430 W. Main St. (Hwy 70)
Thatcher, AZ 85552
Hours 10-4:00 M,T, Sat.
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.
- For current information about a center near you, go to the Family History Center Map
515 11th St
Safford, Graham, Arizona, United States
This is not a mailing address. Due to limited staff, Family History Centers are unable to respond to mail inquiries.
Websites[edit | edit source]
- Graham County, AZ History, Records, Facts and Genealogy (Genealogy Inc)
- USGenWeb for Graham county Arizona. May have maps, name indexes, history or other information for this county.
- FamilySearch Catalog
- Graham County, Arizona Genealogy and Family History (Linkpendium)
References[edit | edit source]
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Graham County, Arizona. Page 56-57 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), 52.
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Gila County, Arizona p. 56. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- Wikipedia contributors, "Graham, Arizona," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graham_County,_Arizona 7/10/2017.
- Beers, 100; "Mexican War of Independence," New Handbook of Texas, 4:698
- Williams 108-110
- U.S. Stat., vol. 9, pp. 922-943; Parry, 102: 29-59; Van Zandt, 11, 28-29; Walker and Bufkin, 19, 20A
- William Thorndale, and William Dollarhide, Map Guide to the U.S. Federal Censuses, 1790-1920 (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1987), 26. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 X2th.
- Original Counties of New Mexico Territory (map) at (accessed 9 August 2011).
- N.M. Terr. Laws 1851, 1st assy., 1st sess./p. 119; N.M. Terr. Laws 1851, 1st assy., 2d sess. /pp. 266, 292
- U.S. Stat., vol. 10, pp. 1031-1037; Van Zandt, 11, 29, 162
- U.S. Stat., vol. 10, ch. 245/p. 575; Van Zandt, 162; Walker and Bufkin, 21-22
- N.M. Terr. Laws 1854, 4th assy. /p. 57
- U.S. Stat., vol. 12, ch. 56/pp. 664-665; Ariz. Terr. Laws 1864, 1st assy./ pp. vii-viii; Van Zandt, 162
- Howell Code, Ariz. Terr. Laws 1864, 1st assy., ch. 2/ pp. 24-25
- Ariz. Terr. Laws 1879, 10th assy./ pp. 96-97
- Ariz. Terr. Laws 1881, 11th assy./ pp. 155-157
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Ariz. Terr. Laws 1909, 25th assy./ pp. 43-56
- Wikipedia contributors, "Graham County, Arizona," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graham_County,_Arizona, accessed 23 February 2019.