Lewis and Clark County, Montana Genealogy

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United States
Montana
Lewis and Clark County

Guide to Lewis and Clark County, Montana ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

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County Facts
County seat: Helena
Organized: February 2, 1865
Parent County(s): Original county[1]
Neighboring Counties
Broadwater  • Cascade  • Flathead  • Jefferson  • Meagher  • Powell  • Teton
See County Maps
Courthouse
MontanaLewisandClarkCourthouse.jpg
Location Map
Map of Montana highlighting Lewis and Clark County.png
Adoption

County Information

Description

Lewis and Clark County was founded in 1865. The County Seat is Helena.[2] The State is located in the central western area. The name was given in honor of explorers Lewis and Clark.[3]

County Courthouse

Lewis and Clark County Courthouse
316 N Park Avenue
Helena, MT 59624
Phone: 406.447.8335
Lewis and Clark County Website

County Clerk has birth records from 1907, divorce records from 1895 and land records from 1865
Clerk District Court has marriage, divorce, probate and court records [4]

Lewis and Clark County, Montana Record Dates

Information for this chart was taken from various sources, often containing conflicting dates. This information should be taken as a guide and should be verified by contacting the county and/or the state government agency.

Known Beginning Dates for Major Records[5]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1907 1865 1895 1867 1865 1867 1860
*State birth and death records began in 1907.
Compliance for recording births was 1922 and 1915 for deaths.[6]

Record Loss

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

Boundary Changes


Parent County: created 2 February 1865 as an original county
County seat: Helena [7]

Populated Places

The following are locations in the county from Wikipedia: [8]

Cities
Towns
Unincorporated communites
Census-designated places
Ghost towns


Resources

Bible Records

Biographies

Business, Commerce, and Occupations

Cemeteries

Cemeteries of Lewis and Clark County, Montana online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See Montana Cemeteries for more information

Census Records

Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1870 5,040
1880 6,521 29.4%
1890 19,145 193.6%
1900 19,171 0.1%
1910 21,853 14.0%
1920 18,660 −14.6%
1930 18,224 −2.3%
1940 22,131 21.4%
1950 24,540 10.9%
1960 28,006 14.1%
1970 33,281 18.8%
1980 43,039 29.3%
1990 47,495 10.4%
2000 55,716 17.3%
2010 63,395 13.8%
Source: [1]

Before Montana was a state in 1889, the western portion of Montana was included in the 1860 Washington Territory and the eastern was in the unorganized parts of 1860 Nebraska Territory. The 1870 and 1880 Federal Censuses included Montana Territory. No state censuses have been taken.[9] See links listed below.

Territory and State Censuses

Federal Census Records

Federal Censuses were taken for the state of Montana starting in 1890, although no records survived. The 1900 Census is the next Federal Census available. For links to Federal Census indexes, see Montana Census.

Church Records

Church records 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 Montana denominations, view the Montana Church Records wiki page.

Online Church Records
Lutheran Church

Other Church Records
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Ward and Branch Records

  • Helena

Court Records

Directories

Emigration and Immigration

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups

Funeral Homes

Genealogies

Guardianship

Land and Property Records

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

Online Land Records

Local Histories

Local histories are available for Lewis and Clark County, Montana 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 Montana Local Histories.

  • In the Shadows of the Rockies : A History of the Augusta Area. c 1978. By the Augusta Heritage Committee (Augusta, Montana). [Montana?] : Fairfield Times. At various libraries(WorldCat).

Online County Histories

Maps and Gazetteers

Lewis and Clark CountyCascade CountyMeagher CountyFlathead CountyBroadwater CountyJefferson CountyGranite CountyTeton CountyPowell CountyMT Lewis and Clark.png
About this image
Click a neighboring county
for more resources


Migration

Military Records

Online Collections

These collections are unique to Montana. You will find nationwide databases for military records on U.S. Military Online Genealogy Records and Montana Military Records.
Civil War

World War I

World War II

World War II

For further information see Montana Military Records.

Naturalization and Citizenship

Online Naturalization Records

Newspapers

For more information, see Montana Newspapers.


Montana Newspapers Online

Montana Newspaper Catalogs

  • U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690-Present on Chronicling America - contains a list of all known newspapers and the dates they cover; once you locate a newspaper name, contact the local library to see if they have copies of the newspaper

Obituaries

See also United States Obituaries for more about finding United States obituaries.

Other Records

Public Records

Periodicals

Probate Records

In most counties in Montana, probate records have been kept by the county judge. They include wills, inventories, claim registers, inheritance records, probate packets, and dockets. The records are available at the county courthouse.

The FamilySearch Catalog lists films of probate records. To find the records for this county, use the Place Search for Montana, Lewis and Clark - Probate records.

Online Probate Records

School Records

Tax Records

Montana tax records complement land records and can be used to supplement the years between censuses. There may be gaps of several years in the records.

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 birth and death original records can be purchased from the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services or the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred. For information about marriages, divorces, and requirements for obtaining any vital records, see the CDC Where to Write website.

Birth

Marriage

Death

Divorce

Research Facilities

Archives

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.

Libraries

Museums

Upper Blackfoot Historical Soiecty
P.O. Box 922
Lincoln 59639-0922

Societies

Lewis and Clark County Genealogical Society
P.O. Box 5313
120 South Last Chance Gulch
Helena, MT 59601
Website
Meetings are held at The Library is located on the mezzanine of the Lewis and Clark Library

Websites

Research Guides

References

  1. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002).
  2. http://genealogytrails.com/mon/lewisandclark/ accessed 11/18/2016
  3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lewis_and_Clark_County,_Montana accessed 11/18/2016
  4. The Handybook for Genealogists : United States of America, 10th ed., (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), p. 416.
  5. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Lewis and Clark County, Montana. Page 416. 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), 406.
  6. Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Rev. ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 1992), 439.
  7. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  8. Wikipedia contributors, "Lewis and Clark County, Montana," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lewis_and_Clark_County,_Montana, accessed 7 December 2016.
  9. ’'Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), 409. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.