McLean County, Kentucky Genealogy

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McLean County

Guide to McLean County, Kentucky ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records. Located in the Western Coal Fields region.


McLean County, Kentucky
Map of Kentucky highlighting McLean County
Location in the state of Kentucky
Map of the U.S. highlighting Kentucky
Location of Kentucky in the U.S.
Founded February 6, 1854
County Seat Calhoun
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County Courthouse

Beginning Dates for McLean County, Kentucky Genealogy Government Records
*Many years between 1854 and 1911 are missing
McLean County Courthouse, Calhoun, KY

McLean County Courthouse
210 Main Street
Calhoun KY 42327-0057
Phone: 270.273.3082[1]


Parent County

1854--McLean County was created 6 February 1854 from Daviess, Ohio and Muhlenberg Counties.
County seat: Calhoun [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.

County Pronunciation

Record Loss

1908--A disaster destroyed some records.


Populated Places

Beech Grove Congleton Livermore Rumsey
Buel Elba Nuckols Sacramento
Buttonsberry Glenville Poplar Grove Semiway
Calhoun Guffie Proverty Wrightsburg
Cleopatra Island Quinn Landing Wyman
Comer Lemon Rangers Landing

Neighboring Counties



African American Research

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



Cemeteries of McLean, 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 McLean county cemeteries.


Historical populations
Census Pop.

For tips on accessing McLean 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.



It is anticipated that this bibliography will eventually identify all known family histories published about residents of this county. Use this list to:

  • Locate publications about direct ancestors
  • Find the most updated accounts of an ancestor's family
  • Identify publications, to quote Elizabeth Shown Mills, about an ancestor's "FAN Club" [Friends, Associates, and Neighbors]
  • Cox, Elizabeth Smith. Guffie Thru the Years, McLean County, Kentucky. Calhoun, Ky.: Captain William Rowan Chapter, DAR, 1991. FHL Book 976.9826/G1 H2c
  • [Baker] Chapman, Peggy Brown. Bakers of Logan, Christian, Muhlenberg, Livingston, Henderson, Hopkins, Caldwell, Union, Todd, Trigg, Crittenden, Lyon, McLean and Webster Counties & Jackson Purchase, Kentucky. Lubbock, Texas: P.B. Chapman, 1995. FHL Book 929.273 B171cp


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 McLean 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 McLean 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 McLean County, Kentucky Genealogy:

- 17th Regiment, Kentucky Infantry (Union), Companies A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I and K.
- 1st Regiment, Kentucky Infantry (Union), Company B.
- 3rd Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Union), Companies A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, K, L and M.
- 11th Regiment, Kentucky Infantry (Union), Companies A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I and K.
World War I
Korean War



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



Probate records are held by the McLean County, Kentucky Genealogy Clerk of Court and are housed at the McLean 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 McLean County, Kentucky Genealogy Clerk, with divorce records 1849-1958 located with the McLean 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


Voting Registers

The 1863 "Sacramento poll-book, McLean county, Kentucky," appeared as evidence in a House of Representatives case in Washington, D.C. Information is listed about more than 100 voters. For access, see:

  • "Contested election, John McHenry, Jr., vs. George H. Yeamans, second congressional district of Kentucky, papers," in U.S. Serial Set 1200 H.misdoc.36: Dec 9, 1863. Digital version in U.S. Serial Set, HeritageQuest Online ($). [Search for "Person Name" McHenry Yeamans, see pp. 86-88 for list.]

Societies and Libraries

McLean County Historical Society
Box 193, Route 3
Calhoun KY 42327

The McLean County Genealogical Society
PO Box 488
Normal, IL 61761

McLean County History and Genealogy News
540 Main Street
PO Box 34
Calhoun, Kentucky 42327
Telephone: 270-273-3602 or 270-785-4588

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), McLean 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. Voice of Dorothy Murphy (b. 1927), life-long resident of Central City, Ky. (2011)
  4. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at