McCracken County, Kentucky Genealogy

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McCracken County

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


McCracken County, Kentucky
Map of Kentucky highlighting McCracken County
Location in the state of Kentucky
Map of the U.S. highlighting Kentucky
Location of Kentucky in the U.S.
Founded December 17, 1824
County Seat Paducah
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County Courthouse

Beginning Dates for McCracken County, Kentucky Genealogy Government Records
*Many years between 1852 and 1911 are missing
McCracken County Courthouse, Paducah, KY

McCracken County Courthouse
132 S 4th Street
Paducah, KY 42001
Phone 270.335.5168[1]


Parent County

1824--McCracken County was created 17 December 1824 from Hickman County.
County seat: Paducah [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 website.

Record Loss

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


Populated Places

Avondale Heights Future City Lone Oak Riverview
Camelia Grahamville Massac Rossington
Cecil Hardmoney Maxon Rowlandtown
Chiles Heath Maxon Crossing Saint Johns
Cimota City Hendron Melber Shady Grove
Concord High Point Oakdale Stiles Crossing
Epperson Ingleside Oaks Tyler
Forest Hill Krebs Paducah West Paducah
Freemont Lamont Ragland Woodlawn
Futrell Littleville Reidland Woodville

Neighboring Counties



African American Research

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


  • KY Biographies ~ Jeff Murphy's Kentucky Biographies Project
  • All of the family biographies from the 1885 History of McCracken County, Kentucky by Battle, Perrin, and Kniffin are available free online on My Genealogy Hound


Cemeteries of McCracken, 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 McCracken county cemeteries.


Historical populations
Census Pop.

For tips on accessing McCracken 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 McCracken 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.

  • Neuman, Fred G. The Story of Paducah. Paducah, Ky.: Young Printing Company, 1920. Digital version at FamilySearch Books Online - free.



Civil War

Online Records

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

- 4th Regiment, Kentucky Mounted Infantry (Union), Company C.
- 12th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Union), Companies I, K, L and M.
- 15th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Union), Companies A, B, C, D, E and F.

Civil War Battle

The following Civil War battle was fought in McCracken County:

Map showing Civil War battles in Kentucky.
World War I
Korean War



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



Probate records are held by the McCracken County, Kentucky Genealogy Clerk of Court and are housed at the McCracken 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


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 McCracken County, Kentucky Genealogy Clerk, with divorce records 1849-1958 located with the McCracken 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
  • 1852-1862 - McCracken County Birth Index 1852-1862. Batch C517671 at FamilySearch - free.[5]
  • 1874 - McCracken County Birth Index 1874. Batch C517672 at FamilySearch - free.</ref>
  • 1875 - McCracken County Birth Index 1875. Batch C517673 at FamilySearch - free.</ref>
  • Searchable KY Vital Records ~ Searchable databases of KY Births, Deaths and Marriages
  • 1973-1993 - KY Divorces 1973 - 1993 ~ Kentucky Divorce Records 1973 - 1993 ~ University of Kentucky Vital Records Databases

Societies and Libraries

McCracken County Genealogical & Historical Society
P.O.Box 7651
Paducah, Kentucky 42002-7651

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), McCracken County, Kentucky page 273, 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. May be used for free at Family History Center. To locate a center near you, click here.
  4. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 7 August, 2012)
  5. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at