McCracken County, Kentucky Genealogy

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United States
Kentucky
McCracken County

Guide to McCracken County, Kentucky 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: Paducah
Organized: December 17, 1824
Parent County(s): Hickman[1]
Neighboring Counties
Ballard  • Carlisle  • Graves  • Livingston  • Marshall  • Massac (IL)  • Pulaski (IL)
See County Maps
Courthouse
McCracken County Courthouse, Paducah, KY
Location Map
McCracken County svg.png
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County Information

Description

The County was named for Virgil McCracken. The County has Paducah as its seat and the County was created 1825. The County is located in the southwest area of the state.[2]

County Courthouse

McCracken County Courthouse
132 S 4th Street
Paducah, KY 42001
Phone: 270-335-5168[3]
McCracken County Website

McCracken County, Kentucky 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 County Records[4]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1852 1825 1852 1825 1825 1825 1810
Statewide registration for births and deaths started in 1911. General compliance by 1917.

Record Loss

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

Boundary Changes

  • 1824--McCracken County was created 17 December 1824 from Hickman County.
  • County seat: Paducah[5]

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.

Populated Places

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:[6]

Cities
Unincorporated communities
  • Avondale Heights
  • Bryans Ford
  • Camelia
  • Cecil
  • Ceredo
  • Chiles
  • Cimota City
  • Concord
  • Crawford Lake
  • Epperson
  • Forest Hill
  • Freemont
  • Futrell
  • Future City
  • Grahamville
  • Hardmoney
  • Heath
  • High Point
  • Hinkleville
  • Hovekamp
  • Kauffman
  • Krebs
  • Lamont
  • Littleville
  • Lone Oak
  • Maxon
  • Maxon Crossing
  • Melber
  • Oakdale
  • Oaks
  • Ragland
  • Riverview
  • Rossington
  • Rowlandtown
  • Rudolph
  • Saint Johns
  • Shady Grove
  • Sheehan Bridge
  • Spring Hill
  • Stiles Crossing
  • Tyler
  • West Future City
  • West Paducah
  • Woodlawn
  • Woodville
  • Wurth
  • Yopp
Census-designated places


History Timeline

Resources

Bible Records

Biographies

  • 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

Business, Commerce, and Occupations

Cemeteries

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.

Census Records

Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1830 1,297
1840 4,745 265.8%
1850 6,067 27.9%
1860 10,360 70.8%
1870 13,988 35.0%
1880 16,262 16.3%
1890 21,051 29.4%
1900 28,733 36.5%
1910 35,064 22.0%
1920 37,246 6.2%
1930 46,271 24.2%
1940 48,534 4.9%
1950 49,137 1.2%
1960 57,306 16.6%
1970 58,281 1.7%
1980 61,310 5.2%
1990 62,879 2.6%
2000 65,514 4.2%
2010 65,565 0.1%
Source: "Wikipedia.org".

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

Church Records

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.

Court Records

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.

Directories

Emigration and Immigration

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups

African Americans

More information about African American resources in Kentucky can be found on the Kentucky African Americans and the United States African Americans Wiki pages.

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 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.

Maps and Gazetteers

IllinoisMassac CountyLivingston CountyMarshall CountyGraves CountyCarlisle CountyBallard CountyKY McCRACKEN.PNG
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Migration

Military Records

Civil War

Online Records

Regiments. Men in McCracken County served in various regiments and companies. Those listed below were specifically formed in this county:

- 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:

  • March 25, 1864 Paducah[7]
  • Map showing Civil War battles in Kentucky.

World War I

Korean War

Naturalization and Citizenship

Newspapers

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

Obituaries

Other Records

Periodicals

Probate Records

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 for Caldwell, Henry, Hickman, Russell and Trimble counties. 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

School Records

Tax 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 Clerk, with divorce records 1849-1958 located with the McCracken County Circuit Court. For more information see How to Find Kentucky Marriage Records. For Kentucky divorce records see the wiki page Kentucky Vital Records.

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

Societies

Websites

Research Guides

References

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Kentucky. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. Wikipedia contributors, "McCracken County, Kentucky" in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McCracken_County,_Kentucky."
  3. 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.
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), McCracken County, Kentucky. Page 268-276 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), 251-254.
  5. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Kentucky. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  6. Wikipedia contributors, "McCracken County, Kentucky," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McCracken_County,_Kentucky, accessed 31 August 2018.
  7. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 7 August, 2012)
  8. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/images/7/75/Igikentuckymz.pdf.

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