Highlands County, Florida Genealogy

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United States
Florida
Highlands County

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

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Highlands County, Florida
Map
Map of Florida highlighting Highlands County
Location in the state of Florida
Map of the U.S. highlighting Florida
Location of Florida in the U.S.
Facts
Founded April 23, 1921
County Seat Sebring
Courthouse
FloridaHighlandsCourthouse.jpg
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County Information

Highlands County, Florida Record Dates

Beginning Dates for Major County Records[1]
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate
1921 1830 1921 1921

County Courthouse

Highlands County Courthouse
590 S Commerce Avenue
Sebring, FL 33870
Phone 863.402.6565

Clerk Circuit Court has marriage, divorce, probate and land records from 1921. [2]

History

Parent County

1921--Highlands County was created 23 April 1921 from DeSoto County.
County seat: Sebring [3]

Description

The county was named for the terrain of the county. The County Seat is Sebring and the county was created April 23, 1921. The County is located in the South central area of the state.[4]

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating Florida county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Florida County Boundary Maps" (1821-1997) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Record Loss

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

Places / Localities

Populated Places

Neighboring Counties

Charlotte • DeSoto • Glades • Hardee • Okeechobee • Osceola • Polk

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Resources

Cemeteries

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

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

Census

For tips on accessing Highlands County, Florida Genealogy census records online, see: Florida Census.

  • 1783 Spanish Census USGenWeb
  • 1821 Census/Tax List Index USGenWeb
  • 1823 Census/Tax List Index USGenWeb
  • 1880 Census African Born Blacks and Mulattos USGenWeb
  • Federal Census Information from National Archives USGenWeb
  • State Census Information from Florida State Archives USGenWeb
  • Census of Pensioners Revolutionary Military Service USGenWeb

Church

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 Florida denominations, view the Florida Church Records wiki page.

Court

Land

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

Florida Territorial Land Records

Local Histories

Local histories are available for Highlands County, Florida 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 Florida Local Histories.

Maps

Flhighlands.png


Military

Civil War
World War I
World War II
Korean War
Vietnam War

Newspapers

Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Highlands County, Florida Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:

Obituaries

  • Early Florida Newspapers at the Florida State Library USGenWeb

Probate

Probate records are held by the Highlands County, Florida Genealogy Clerk of Court and are housed at the Highlands County, Florida Genealogy Courthouse. See the wiki page Florida Probate Records for information about how to use probate records.

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.

Online Probate Records

  • 1784 – 1990 FamilySearch Florida Probate Records 1784-1990
  • 1810 – 1974 Ancestry.com $ Florida Wills and Probate Records 1810-1974

Taxation

Taxes were levied on free white males over 21 and slaves aged 21 to 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. For more information see the wiki page Florida 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 Florida Department of Health, Bureau of Vital Statistics, the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred or order electronically online. See also How to order Florida Vital Records

For some online statewide indexes, see the FamilySearch Historical Record Collections for Florida.

Birth Records
Death Records
Divorce Records
Marriage Records

Societies and Libraries

Sebring Historical Society
321 W Center Ave
Sebring, FL 33870
Telephone Number: 863-471-2522
Website

Highlands County Genealogical Society
c/o Lake Placid Library
47 Park Dr.
Lake Placid, FL 33852

Highlands County Historical Society
430 S. Commerce Ave
Sebring 33870


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.

Websites

References

  1. Alice Eichholz, Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, Revised ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1992), 123-139. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27rb 1992
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Highlands County, Florida Page 134 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  4. Wikipedia contributors, "Highlands County," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Highlands_County,_Florida 04/24/2017.