Merrick County, Nebraska Genealogy

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United States
Merrick County

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

County Facts
County seat: Central City
Organized: November 4, 1858
Parent County(s): unorganized territory[1]
Neighboring Counties
Greeley  • Hall  • Hamilton  • Howard  • Nance  • Platte  • Polk
See County Maps
Location Map
200px-Map of Nebraska highlighting Merrick County svg.bmp

County Information


The County was named for Elvira Merrick. The County has Central City as its seat and the County was created 1864. The County is located in east central area of the state.[2]

County Courthouse

Merrick County Courthouse
1510 18th Street
P.O. Box 27
Central City, NE 68826-0027
Phone: 308.946.2881
Merrick County Website

County Clerk has birth, and death records.
County Judge has marriage, divorce, probate and court records.
Register of Deeds has land records from 1873. [1]

Merrick County, Nebraska 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[3]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1904 1869 1904 1858 1873 1858 1854
Statewide registration for births and deaths started in late 1904. General compliance by 1920.

Record Loss

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

Boundary Changes

Populated Places

The following are locations in Merrick County, Nebraska:[4]


  • Central City

Unincorporated communities

  • Havens
  • Lockwood
  • Paddock
  • Worms


  • Chapman
  • Clarks
  • Palmer
  • Silver Creek

Census-designated place

  • Archer


  • Central
  • Chapman
  • Clarksville
  • Lone Tree
  • Loup
  • Mead
  • Midland
  • Prairie Creek
  • Prairie Island
  • Silver Creek
  • Vieregg

History Timeline


Bible Records


Business, Commerce, and Occupations


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


Census Records

Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1860 109
1870 557 411.0%
1880 5,341 858.9%
1890 8,758 64.0%
1900 9,255 5.7%
1910 10,379 12.1%
1920 10,763 3.7%
1930 10,619 −1.3%
1940 9,354 −11.9%
1950 8,812 −5.8%
1960 8,363 −5.1%
1970 8,751 4.6%
1980 8,945 2.2%
1990 8,049 −10.0%
2000 8,204 1.9%
2010 7,845 −4.4%
Source: "".

Federal Censuses were taken for Nebraska starting in 1860. For links to Federal census indexes, see Nebraska Census.

For tips on accessing Merrick County, Nebraska Genealogy census records online, see: Nebraska Census.

State Census Records

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 Nebraska denominations, view the Nebraska Church Records wiki page.

Court Records


Emigration and Immigration

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups

Funeral Homes



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

Another resource published in 1921 is the Atlas and Plat Book of Merrick County Nebraska.

For more information see Nebraska Land and Property

Local Histories

Local histories are available for Merrick County, Nebraska 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 Nebraska Local Histories.

Maps and Gazetteers

Howard CountyNance CountyPlatte CountyPolk CountyHall CountyHamilton CountyYork CountyNE MERRICK.PNG
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for more resources


Early migration routes to and from Merrick County for European and African American settlers included:

Military Records

Revolutionary War

Civil War

World War I

Naturalization and Citizenship


For information on Nebraska newspapers, see Nebraska Newspapers.

Central City Nonpareil; Central City Republican; Central City Republican-Nonpareil; Central City Courier; Central City Record; Clarks News; Palmer Journal; Twin City Post; Silver Creek Sand; Silver Creek Times Nebraska Newspapers Online

Nebraska Newspaper Catalogs


Other Records


Probate Records

In most counties in Nebraska, probate records have been kept by the county judge. They include wills, fee books, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, probate ticklers, 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 Nebraska - Merrick - Probate records.

Online Probate Records

School Records

Tax Records

Nebraska tax records complement land records and can be used in place of censuses before 1820 or 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 original records can be purchased from the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services or the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred.





Research Facilities


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.





Research Guides


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Nebraska.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. Wikipedia contributors, "Merrick, Nebraska," in,_Nebraska" accessed 8/22/2018
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Merrick County, Nebraska. Page 428-435 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), 417-420.
  4. Wikipedia contributors, "Merrick County, Nebraska," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Nebraska, accessed 1 August 2016.
  5. Jim Tompkins, "The Oregon Trail 1841-1848 Map I" in Oregon Trail Landmarks at (accessed 18 July 2011).
  6. "Oregon California Trails Association" at (accessed 18 July 2011).
  7. "The Pioneer Story: The Mormon Pioneer Trail" in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at (accessed 18 July 2011).