Ransom County, North Dakota Genealogy
Guide to Ransom County, North Dakota ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.
- 1 County Information
- 2 Resources
- 2.1 Bible Records
- 2.2 Biographies
- 2.3 Business, Commerce, and Occupations
- 2.4 Cemeteries
- 2.5 Census Records
- 2.6 Church Records
- 2.7 Court Records
- 2.8 Directories
- 2.9 Emigration and Immigration
- 2.10 Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups
- 2.11 Funeral Homes
- 2.12 Genealogies
- 2.13 Guardianship
- 2.14 Land and Property Records
- 2.15 Local Histories
- 2.16 Maps and Gazetteers
- 2.17 Migration
- 2.18 Military Records
- 2.19 Naturalization and Citizenship
- 2.20 Newspapers
- 2.21 Obituaries
- 2.22 Other Records
- 2.23 Periodicals
- 2.24 Probate Records
- 2.25 School Records
- 2.26 Tax Records
- 2.27 Vital Records
- 3 Research Facilities
- 4 Societies
- 5 Websites
- 6 Research Guides
- 7 References
Established January 4, 1873. Organized April 4, 1881. Its county seat is Lisbon.
Ransom County Courthouse
204 5th Ave West
Lisbon, ND 58054
Ransom County Website
Clerk District Court has birth and death records from 1943, marriage records from 1882, divorce, probate and court records;
Clerk District Court
Register of Deeds has land records
Ransom County, North Dakota 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.
Full compliance by 1924.
There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.
The following are locations in the county
- Index to Ransom County Biographies on North Dakota Genealogy Trails website - alphabetical list of early settlers and prominent individuals from county histories
- North Dakota Biography Index at North Dakota State University Archives - Index only; gives references to publications containing information on North Dakotans, living and deceased
Business, Commerce, and Occupations
Before North Dakota was a state in 1889, parts of North Dakota were included in the 1836 Iowa Territory census (also known as Wisconsin Territory), 1840 Iowa Territory census, 1850 Minnesota Territory census, and the 1860-1880 Dakota Territory censuses. See links listed below.
- 1880, 1885 Ransom County Mortality Index (Genealogy Trails)
- Ransom County Census Records (USGenWeb Archives)
Territory and State Census Records
- 1836 - 1836 Wisconsin Territory Census – index only; North Dakota was included in the 1836 Wisconsin Territory Census
- 1840 - United States Census, 1840 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images; North Dakota was included in the 1840 Iowa Territory Census
- 1850 - United States Census, 1850 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images; North Dakota was included in the 1850 Minnesota Territory Census
- 1860 - United States Census, 1860 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images; North Dakota was included in the 1860 Dakota Territory Census
- 1870 - United States Census, 1870 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images; North Dakota was included in the 1870 Dakota Territory Census
- 1880 - United States Census, 1880 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images; North Dakota was included in the 1880 Dakota Territory Census
- 1885 Dakota Territory 1885 Census Index at NDSU Archives – index only
- 1885 Dakota Territory 1885 List of Names (four links). (Genealogy Trails)
- 1885, 1915, 1925 North Dakota, Territorial and State Censuses, 1885, 1915, 1925 at Ancestry.com – ($), index and images
- 1915 North Dakota Census, 1915 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images
- 1925 North Dakota Census, 1925 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images
Federal Census Records
Federal Censuses were taken for the state of North Dakota starting in 1890, although no records survived. The 1900 Census is the next Federal Census available. For links to Federal census indexes, see North Dakota Census.
Church records can be found online, kept onsite at the church, or housed in a church archive or library. See North Dakota Church Records for more information on how to locate the records.
Online Church Records
- 1875-1940 - U.S., Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, Records, 1875-1940 at Ancestry — ($); Index and images; Dates vary for each county
- Records of the American Lutheran Church, Enderlin, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
- Records of the American Lutheran Church, Lisbon, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).
- 1902 - Enderlin Medical Directory (USGenWeb Archives)
- 1909 - Ransom County Attorneys (USGenWeb Archives)
Emigration and Immigration
Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups
- Ransom County Funeral Home Records. Scroll down to list. (USGenWeb Archives)
Land and Property Records
When the United States acquired North Dakota, most of the land became available for homesteading or purchase from the federal government. After land was transferred from the government to private owners, the registrar of deeds in each county recorded the land transactions in the form of deeds and mortgages. For more information, see North Dakota Land and Property.
- Index to Ransom County BLM Land Records by Surname (USGenWeb Archives)
- Land Patent Search - index to federal patents and homesteads on the Bureau of Land Management website, some images available
- 1796 - 1907 - U.S. General Land Office Records, 1796-1907 at Ancestry - index, info taken from Bureau of Land Management website
- 1861 - 1936 - U.S. Homestead Records 1861-1936 at Ancestry.com - ($), index and images
For more information see North Dakota Land and Property
Local histories, including those of the county, are available for Ransom County. These histories can include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information.
- County History, including early settlers (Genealogy Trails)
- Various Historical Records of Ransom County (USGenWeb Archives)
- Early history of Ransom County : including references to Sargent County, 1835-1885. [19--?]. Salem, Massachusetts : Higginson Book Co.. Online at:Hathitrust; At various libraries (WorldCat).
- Fort Ransom area history, 1878-1978. 1978?. By Loubert Rufsvold. S.l. : s.n. Online at: ; At various libraries (WorldCat).
- The Skånings revisited, 1882-1982 : including the history of Aliceton, biographical sketches of early Aliceton residents, genealogy of the Skånings, and a reprint of The Skånings of Aliceton. 1982. By Ardis Taylor. [Lisbon, New Dakota] : Taylor, R. J. Jr. Foundation. Online at:; At various libraries (WorldCat).
Maps and Gazetteers
- Interactive Formation Boundary Map of North Dakota - shows boundary changes for North Dakota Counties
- North Dakota Maps at NDGenWeb -historical maps
- 1861-1865 - Dakota Territory Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, 1861-1865 at FamilySearch.
- 1890 - United States Census of Union Veterans and Widows of the Civil War, 1890 at FamilySearch.
- 1883 - Pensioners on the Rolls as of January 1, 1883 (Genealogy Trails)
World War I
- 1917-1918 - North Dakota Military Men 1917-1918 at Ancestry ($)
- 1917-1918 - Roster of the men and women who served in the army or naval service (including the Marine Corps) of the United States or its allies from the state of North Dakota in the World War, 1917-1918, Vols. 1-4 at Ancestry ($)
- 1918 - Congressional Medal Of Honor Citation, Frederick Eliphaz Smith (USGenWeb Archives)
- Picture of Lisbon WW1 Soldiers, not identified. (Genealogy Trails)
- World War I Casualties, Ransom County, North Dakota (Genealogy Trails)
World War II
- World War II Army Casualties, Ransom County, North Dakota (Genealogy Trails)
- World War II Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard Casualties, Ransom County, North Dakota (Genealogy Trails)
- Vietnam War Casualties, Ransom County, North Dakota (Genealogy Trails)
For further information see North Dakota Military Records.
Naturalization and Citizenship
Online Naturalization Indexes and Records
- North Dakota Naturalization Records Index at NDSU Archives – index only, covers various dates and counties
For more information, see North Dakota Newspapers.
North Dakota Newspapers Online
- GenealogyBank - ($), contains images of North Dakota newspapers GenealogyBank] - ($), contains images of North Dakota newspapers
- Newspaper Archive - ($), contains images of North Dakota newspapers
- Chronicling America - contains images of some North Dakota newspapers; searching tips
- Elephind - Free; search engine that retrieves newspaper images from other free newspaper websites
North Dakota Newspaper Catalogs
- U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690-Present on Chronicling America - contains a list of all known newspapers and the dates they cover; once you locate a newspaper name, contact the local library to see if they have copies of the newspaper
- State Historical Society of North Dakota - contains inventory and catalog of all known ND newspapers
- Ransom County Obituaries (Genealogy Trails)
Probate records, including wills and estates, are at the county clerk's office. See also North Dakota Probate Records.
Online Probate Records
- 1800 – 1985 North Dakota and South Dakota Wills and Probate Records 1800-1985 at Ancestry.com — index and images $
County tax records are at the county treasurer's, auditor's or clerk's office in the county courthouse. Some tax records may have been moved to the North Dakota State Archives.
Birth, marriage, death, and divorce records may be recorded on registers, certificates, or other documents at the county clerk's office. Many records are also being digitized and put online. See North Dakota Vital Records for more information about availability and how to access them.
- Ransom County Marriage Announcements (Genealogy Trails)
Online Death Indexes and Records
North Dakota State University Archives
West Building 3551 7th Avenue
N Fargo, ND 58102
Libraries NDSU Dept #2080
PO Box 6050
Fargo, ND 58108-6050
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.
Ransom County Historical Society
6231 121 Avenue SE
Fort Ransom, ND 58033
Telephone: 701-973-8303 or 701-973-2259
Enderlin Historical Society and Museum, Inc.
13296 55th St. SE
Enderlin, ND 58027
Telephone: 701-437-3205 or 701-799-0725
- Ransom County, North Dakota, USGenWeb Project. May have maps, name indexes, history or other information for this county.
- Ransom County, North Dakota, USGenWeb Archives
- 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.
- Ransom County, North Dakota Genealogy and Family History (Linkpendium)
- Ransom County Genealogy (LDS Genealogy)
- Ransom County, North Dakota, Genealogy and History (Genealogy Trails)
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Genealogy Trails: Ransom County, North Dakota Genealogy and History
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Ransom County, North Dakota. Page 525 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Ransom County, North Dakota. Page 525 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), 518.
- Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Rev. ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 1992), 562; Alice M. Hetzel, U.S. Vital Statistics System: Major Activities and Developments, 1950-95 (Hyattsville, Md.: U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics, ), 58.
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Wikipedia contributors, "Ransom County, North Dakota," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia.
- Alice Eichholz, ‘’Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources,’’ 3rd ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 2004), 511. Free online version; FHL Book 973 D27rb 2004; WorldCat entry.
- "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.