Otter Tail County, Minnesota Genealogy
Guide to Otter Tail County, Minnesota ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.
|Otter Tail County, Minnesota|
Location in the state of Minnesota
Location of Minnesota in the U.S.
|Founded||March 18, 1858|
|County Seat||Fergus Falls|
|Address|| Otter Tail County Courthouse|
121 W Junis Avenue
Fergus Falls, MN 56537
Otter Tail County Website
- 1 County Information
- 2 County Courthouse
- 3 History
- 4 Places/Localities
- 5 Resources
- 5.1 Cemeteries
- 5.2 Census
- 5.3 Church
- 5.4 Court
- 5.5 Emigration and Immigration
- 5.6 Land
- 5.7 Local Histories
- 5.8 Maps
- 5.9 Military
- 5.10 Newspapers
- 5.11 Obituaries
- 5.12 Probate
- 5.13 Taxation
- 5.14 Vital Records
- 6 Societies and Libraries
- 7 Websites
- 8 References
The County was named for Otter Tail Lake and Otter Tail River. The County is located in the west central area of the state. 
Otter Tail County, Minnesota Record Dates
Clerk Deeds Court has birth and death records from 1870,
marriage records from 1869, divorce records from 1897,
probate and court records from 1872. 
- 1858--Otter Tail County was created 18 March 1858 from Cass and Pembina (Old) Counties County seat: Fergus Falls 
- For a brief history of Otter Tail County's name, click here, then select Otter Tail County.
There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.
|Tombstone Transcriptions Online||Tombstone Transcriptions in Print||List of Cemeteries in the county|
|Findagrave.com||Family History Library||Findagrave.com|
|See Minnesota Cemeteries for more information.|
- 1865 - Minnesota State Census, 1865 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1885 - Minnesota State Census, 1885 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1905 - Minnesota State Census, 1905 at FamilySearch — index and images
Most church records are held by individual churches. For contact information, check a phone directory, such as SearchBug or Dex Knows. Some denominations are gathering their records into a central repository. For more information about these major repositories, see Minnesota Church Records.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
LDS Ward and Branch Records
- Fergus Falls
Aurdal Lutheran Church, Underwood
- Records of the Aurdal Lutheran Church, Underwood, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
- Records of the American Lutheran Church, Fergus Falls, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
Grace Lutheran Church, Erhard
- Records of the Grace Lutheran Church, Erhard, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
North Immanuel Lutheran Church, Pelican Rapids
- Records of the North Immanuel Lutheran Church, Pelican Rapids, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
South Immanuel Lutheran Church, Rothsay
- Records of the South Immanuel Lutheran Church, Rothsay, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
Trifoldinghed Lutheran Church
- Records of the Trifoldinghed Lutheran Church, Otter Tail County, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
Trinity Lutheran Church, Pelican Rapids
- Records of the Trinity Lutheran Church, Pelican Rapids, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
United Norwegian Lutheran Church, Underwood
- Records of the United Norwegian Lutheran Church, Underwood, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
Emigration and Immigration
The county register of deeds keeps land records once the land was transferred to private ownership. Abstracts and indexes for these records are generally available at the county courthouse.
Land records for Minnesota are listed in the Place Search of the FamilySearch Catalog under:
MINNESOTA, Otter Tail – LAND AND PROPERTY
Local histories are available for Otter Tail County, Minnesota 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 Minnesota Local Histories.
- John W. Mason, ed. History of Otter Tail County, Minnesota : its people, industries and institutions, with biographical sketches of representative citizens and genealogical records of many of the old families. Indianapolis : B. F. Bowen, 1916
- Tweton, Jerome D. The New Deal: At the Grass Roots. St. Paul, MN: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 1988. Print.
- Family Maps of Otter Tail County, Minnesota Genealogy (land patent maps) at HistoryGeo.com ($). Free surname search.
Listing of individuals from this county for these wars:
- World War 1
- World War II
- Korean War
- Vietnam War
Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Otter Tail County, Minnesota Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:
Probate records may include, wills, bonds, petitions, accounts, inventories, administrations, orders, decrees, and distributions. They may include the decedent’s date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, etc. See Minnesota Probate Records for additional information.
Online Probate Records
Minnesota tax records complement land records and can be used in place of censuses before 1820 or to supplement the years between censuses. Because only persons who owned taxable property were listed, many residents were not included in tax lists. There may also be gaps of several years in the tax records of some counties. For more information, see the wiki page Minnesota Taxation.
A copy or an extract of most original records can be purchased from the Minnesota State Registrar of Vital Records, the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred], order electronically online ($) or download an application for Minnesota Birth Certificate and Death Certificates Applications to mail.
- 1850-2001 - Minnesota, County Deaths, 1850-2001 at FamilySearch — index and images
- Online Minnesota Death Records & Indexes
Societies and Libraries
Northwest Minnesota Historical Center
Livingston Lord Library
Moorhead State University
Moorhead, MN 56560
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.
- Otter Tail County, MN Genealogy Forum (GenForum)
- FamilySearch Catalog
- Otter Tail County Genealogy (Minnesota Genealogy)
- Wikipedia contributors, "Otter Tail County, Minnesota" in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otter_Tail_County,_Minnesota accessed 14 Nov 2018
- Alice Eichholz, Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, Revised ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1992), 385-403. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27rb 1992
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Otter County, Minnesota page 367, At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- "Evangelical Lutheran Church in America: An Inventory of Selected Congregational Records of the American Lutheran Church in Minnesota at the Minnesota Historical Society," Collection Finding Aids, Minnesota Historical Society, http://www.mnhs.org/library/findaids/01009.xml, accessed 10 June 2013.