Phillips County, Arkansas Genealogy

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United States
Arkansas
Phillips County
 

Guide to Phillips County, Arkansas 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: Helena
Organized: May 1, 1820
Parent County(s): Arkansas and Hempstead[1]
Neighboring Counties
Arkansas  • Bolivar (MS)  • Coahoma (MS)  • Desha  • Lee  • Monroe  • Tunica (MS)
See County Maps
Courthouse
ArkansasPhillipsCourthouse.jpg
Location Map
Ar-phillips.png
Adoption
This page is available for adoption

County Information

Description

County Courthouse

Phillips County Courthouse
600 Cherry Street
Helena, AR 72342
Phone: 870.338.5505
Phillips County Website

County Clerk has marriage records from 1831 and probate records from 1850; <be>Clerk Circuit Court has divorce, court, and land records from 1820.[2]

Phillips County, Arkansas

Beginning Dates for Major County Records[3]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1914* 1831 1914* 1820 1820 1850
*State birth and death records began in 1914. Limited compliance until 1920's

Record Loss

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

Boundary Changes

  • 1820--Phillips County was created 1 May 1820 from Arkansas and Hempstead Counties.
  • County seat: Helena[4]

One factor that must be taken into account in conducting research pertaining to Phillips County is that the Mississippi River has, on occasion, changed course.

In addition, parts of Phillips County later became other counties:  Crittenden in 1825, St. Francis in 1827, Monroe in 1829, and Lee in 1873.

For animated maps illustrating Arkansas county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Arkansas County Boundary Maps" (1813-1925) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Populated Places

The following are locations in Phillips County, Arkansas:

History Timeline

Emphasis for this timeline is on events that affected migration, records, or record-keeping. Unless otherwise mentioned, the events below were taken from the Phillips County page on the website, The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History and Culture[5] and several other sources.[6] [7] [8] [9]

  • 1797 - Sylvannus Phillips, was living in what is now Phillips County , having come from North Carolina.
  • 1820 May 1 - The Arkansas territorial legislature established Phillips County out of Arkansas County, with St. Francis as the county seat. It is believed that sometime in the next decade the city's name changed to Helena.
  • 1820 November 19 - First deed recorded in Phillips County.
  • 1829 & 1873 - Phillips County was reduced in size twice: first when Monroe County was established, and later when Lee County was established.
  • 1830 - The town of Helena officially named as the county seat.
  • 1852 - A fire nearly destroyed the town of Helena.
  • 1855 - A yellow fever epidemic hit the town of Helena.
  • 1862 - The town became occupied by the Union army under General Samuel Curtis.
  • 1863 July 4 - The Battle of Helena took place, with the confederate troops unsuccessfully attempting to take the town.
  • Today (2010) - Phillips county is one of the few Arkansas counties where African Americans outnumber whites. They do so close to 2 to 1.

Resources

Bible Records

Biographies

Business, Commerce, and Occupations

Cemeteries

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

  General:

Individual Cemeteries:

Census Records

Church Records

Court Records

Directories

Emigration and Immigration

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups

African Americans

Funeral Homes

Genealogies

Guardianship

Land and Property Records

Phillips County deed records from 1886 to 1906 were microfilmed by the Arkansas History Commission in cooperation with the Arkansas History Commission. This was a part of a project which was completed in 2007. The filming project is discussed in an Internet news item in the Arkansas History Commission website.

Local Histories

Local histories are available for {{{1}}} County. They may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. Click for a brief Timeline History of the county. For more about local histories, see Arkansas Local Histories.

Maps and Gazetteers

Click on a neighboring county to go to the wiki page.
Philips CountyLee CountyMonroe CountyArkansas CountySt. Francis CountyDesha CountyTunic CountyCoahoma CountyBolivar CountyJefferson CountyLincoln CountyWoodruff CountyDrew CountyPrairie CountyARPhillips.JPG

Migration

Military Records

Revolutionary War

  • Rejected or Suspended Applications for Revolutionary War Pensions. Washington, D.C., 1852. Reprinted by Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1969, and 1991. Reprints include "an Added Index to States." FHL Collection 973 M24ur; digital version at Ancestry

Civil War

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

- 13th Regiment, Arkansas Infantry (Confederate),
- 2nd Regiment, Arkansas Cavalry (Union)
- 3rd Regiment, Arkansas Cavalry (Union)

Online Records

Civil War Battle

The following Civil War battle was fought in Phillips County.

Map showing Civil War battles in Arkansas.

Naturalization and Citizenship

Newspapers

Finding More Arkansas Newspapers Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Phillips County, Arkansas Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:


Obituaries

Other Records

Periodicals

Probate Records

Online Probate Records

School Records

Tax Records

Vital Records

See also How to order Arkansas Vital Records

Birth

Marriage

  • 1820 - 1879 - Murray, Dorothy L. Phillips County, Arkansas, 1820-1879: Computer Indexed Marriage Records. Hunting for Bears, 1991. Google Books page
  • 1831 - 1946 - Phillips County Marriage Books 1, A-Z, A1-N1 Index 1831-1946 in Arkansas, County Marriages, 1837-1957 at FamilySearch - free.[11]
  • 1831 - 1921 - Phillips County Marriage Books 1, A-Z, A1-N1 Index 1831-1921 in International Genealogical Index at FamilySearch - free.[12]
  • 1860 - 1976 - Arkansas Church Marriages, 1860-1976 at FamilySearch — index and images
  • 1921 - 1951 - Phillips County marriage records from 1921 to 1951 were microfilmed by the Arkansas History Commission in cooperation with the Arkansas History Commission. This was a part of a project which was completed in 2007. The filming project is discussed in an Internet news item in the Arkansas History Commission website.

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

  • Tri-County Genealogical Society, PO Box 580, Marvell, AR 72366, covers Lee, Monroe, and Phillips Counties, Arkansas. The society publishes Tri-County Genealogy.

Websites

  • ARGenWeb. Free. Data may be submitted by individuals or complete transcriptions
  • USGenWeb Archives. Free. Data may be submitted by individuals or may be complete transcriptions
  • RootsWeb resources. Free. Data may be submitted by individuals or may be complete transcriptions
  • Linkpendium. Free. Click links. Some sites they link to may have fees ($)
  • CyndisList. Free. Click links. Some sites they link to may have fees ($)
  • FamilySearch Catalog - The FamilySearch catalog contains descriptions and access information for all genealogical materials (including books, online materials, microfilm, microfiche, and publications) in their collection.  Use Historical Records to search for specific individuals in genealogical records

Research Guides

References

  1. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002).
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002).
  3. Alice Eichholz, Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, 3rd ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry Pub., 2004), 65-67. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27rb 2004.
  4. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002).
  5. Billy Steven Clifft, The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture, (http://www.encyclopediaofarkansas.net/encyclopedia/entry-detail.aspx?entryID=797&type=Category&item=Counties&parent=Counties%2c+Cities%2c+and+Towns&grandparent=+%3a+accessed+January+6%2c+2016)%2c : accessed January 15, 2016), “Phillips County.”
  6. Paul T Hellmann, Historical Gazetteer of the United States: Helena. New York: Routledge, 2005, http://books.google.com/books?id=EQ-R4O2L3nEC&pg=PA63&dq=%22Phillips+County%22+Helena+1820&hl=en&ei=7TgSTrW7AfPksQLliOHUDw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4&ved=0CDoQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=%22Phillips%20County%22%20Helena%201820&f=false, visited 11 July 2017, p. 63.
  7. James D. McCabe, A Comprehensive View of Our Country and its Resources': Helena', Philadelphia: Hubbard Brothers, 1876, http://books.google.com/books?id=cfziDsWvN8gC&pg=PA992&dq=%22Phillips+County%22+Helena+1820&hl=en&ei=PUoSTpalDoXHsQLNzvDUDw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3&ved=0CDAQ6AEwAjgU#v=onepage&q=%22Phillips%20County%22%20Helena%201820&f=false, visited 11 July 2017, , p. 992.
  8. Josiah Hazen Shinn, Pioneers and Makers of Arkansas, Vol. 1, Washington: Genealogical and Historical Publishing Co., 1908, pp. 117-131, http://books.google.com/books?id=GdKkAxrFPt4C&pg=PA124&dq=%22Phillips+County%22+Helena+1820&hl=en&ei=wz8STrWxCLODsALL-9XUDw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=2&ved=0CCwQ6AEwATgK#v=onepage&q=%22Phillips%20County%22%20Helena%201820&f=false, visited 11 July 2017.
  9. Robert Whitaker, On the Laps of Gods: The Red Summer of 1919 and the Struggle for Justice that Remade a Nation, New York: Random House, 2008, http://books.google.com/books?id=SVNX38vKfeMC&pg=PA58&dq=%22Phillips+County%22+Helena+1820&hl=en&ei=wz8STrWxCLODsALL-9XUDw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=5&ved=0CDoQ6AEwBDgK#v=onepage&q=%22Phillips%20County%22%20Helena%201820&f=false, visited 11 July 2017.
  10. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 2 August 2012).
  11. FamilySearch Wiki contributors, "Arkansas County Marriages (FamilySearch Historical Records)," in FamilySearch Wiki.
  12. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at https://www.familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/images/d/d7/Arkansasnz.pdf.