Letcher County, Kentucky Genealogy

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Letcher County

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


Letcher County, Kentucky
Map of Kentucky highlighting Letcher County
Location in the state of Kentucky
Map of the U.S. highlighting Kentucky
Location of Kentucky in the U.S.
Founded March 3, 1842
County Seat Whitesburg
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County Courthouse

Beginning Dates for Letcher County, Kentucky Genealogy Government Records
Birth* Marriage Death* Census Land Probate
1852 1842 1852 1850 1848 1871
*Many years between 1852 and 1911 are missing
Letcher County, Kentucky Courthouse.JPG

Letcher County Courthouse
 101 W Main St; PO Box 58
Whitesburg, KY 41858-0058
Phone: 606.633.2432[1]


Parent County

1842--Letcher County was created 3 March 1842 from Perry and Harlan Counties.  County seat: Whitesburg [2]

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating Kentucky county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Kentucky County Boundary Maps" (1776-1939) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Record Loss

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


Populated Places

Adamson East Jenkins Jenkins Payne Gap
Banks Eolia Jeremiah Polly
Beefhide Ermine Kings Creek Roxana
Bellcraft Farraday Kona Sackett
Blackey Fleming Letcher Seco
Burdine Fleming-Neon Linefork Sergent
Carbon Glow Flint Lucastown Skyline
Carcassonne Gaskill Marlowe Southdown
Colson Gilley Mayking Thornton
Cromona Gordon McRoberts Tillie
Crown Hallie Millstone Tolliver Town
Day Haymond Milton (hist.) Ulvah
Deane Hubert (hist.) Neon Van
Defeated Creek Ice Neon Junction Whitaker
Democrat Indian Bottom (hist.) Oscaloosa Whitco
Dongola Isom Oven Fork Whitesburg
Dunham Jackhorn (hist.) Partridge

Neighboring Counties



African American Research

The following have information concerning African American research.  Both should be used:



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

The following web sites have additional information on Letcher county cemeteries.


Historical populations
Census Pop.
Est. 200823,890−5.5%

For tips on accessing Letcher County, Kentucky Genealogy census records online, see: Kentucky Census.


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 Kentucky denominations, view the Kentucky Church Records wiki page.



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

Local Histories

Local histories are available for Letcher County, Kentucky 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 Kentucky Local Histories.



Civil War

Online Records

Regiments. Service men in Letcher County, Kentucky 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 Letcher County, Kentucky Genealogy:

- 13th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Confederate), Companies A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H and I.



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



Probate records are held by the Letcher County, Kentucky Genealogy Clerk of Court and are housed at the Letcher County, Kentucky Genealogy Courthouse. Microfilmed records can be found online at Kentucky, Probate Records, 1792-1977. See the wiki page Kentucky 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

1871-1905 - Will Book 1 (1871-1905) has been digitized by FamilySearch - free.


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 background information and state-wide resources see the wiki page Kentucky Taxation.

Vital Records

Vital records consist of birth, death, marriage and divorce records. Although Kentucky enacted a statute in 1852-1862 requiring registration of births and deaths,many counties did not comply. A second law was written in 1874-1879, and 1892-1910 but, again, was not always followed. By 1911, the law was more clearly defined and kept by 1920. Any existing births 1852-1960 and death records 1852-1953 can be accessed online. See How to Find Kentucky Birth Records and How to Find Kentucky Death Records for links to indexes and images.

Original marriage records are held at the office of the Letcher County, Kentucky Genealogy Clerk, with divorce records 1849-1958 located with the Letcher County, Kentucky Genealogy Circuit Court. For more information see How to Find Kentucky Marriage Records. For Kentucky divorce records see the wiki page Kentucky Vital Records.. See also How to order Kentucky Vital Records

  • 1839-1960 - KY Births and Christenings ~ Kentucky Births and Christenings, 1839-1960 Family Search
  • 1852-1859 - Letcher County Birth Index 1852-1859. Batch C517611 at FamilySearch - free.[3]
  • 1874-1875 - Letcher County Birth Index 1874-1875. Batch C517612 at FamilySearch - free.</ref>
  • 1875 - Letcher County Birth Index 1875. Batch C517613 at FamilySearch - free.
  • 1973-1993 - KY Divorces 1973 - 1993 ~ Kentucky Divorce Records 1973 - 1993 ~ University of Kentucky Vital Records Databases

Societies and Libraries

Letcher County Historical and Genealogical Society
P.O. Box 312
Whitesburg KY 41858

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. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Letcher County, Kentucky page 272, At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  3. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/images/0/0b/Igikentuckygl.pdf.