Union County, Tennessee Genealogy

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Union County, Tennessee ancestry, family history, and genealogy research page. Guide to Union County (established 1850) genealogy, history, and courthouse sources including birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, wills, deeds and land records, Civil War records, Revolutionary War records, family histories, cemeteries, churches, tax records, newspapers, and obituaries.

Union County, Tennessee
Boundary map of Union County, Tennessee
Map of Tennessee highlighting Union County
Location in the state of Tennessee
Map of the U.S. highlighting Tennessee
Location of Tennessee in the U.S.
Founded: January 3, 1850
County Seat Maynardville
Website: unioncountytn.com
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Description[edit | edit source]

The County was named for the commemoration of the "union" of sections of five counties, or it may reflect East Tennessee's support for the preservation of the Union in the years before the Civil War. The County is located in the northeast area of the state. [1]

Union County, Tennessee Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[2]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1863 1864 1881 1854 1856 1856 1810
Statewide registration for births and deaths began in 1914. General compliance by 1927.

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]


Union County Courthouse, Maynardville, Tennessee.


Union County Courthouse
901 Main Street P O Box 395
Maynardville, TN 37807
Phone: 1-865-992-8043

County Clerk has birth records from 1863,  marriage and probate records.
County Assessor has land records. [3]

Union County Clerk
Birth records from 1864
Marriage and probate records
901 Main St.
Maynardville, TN 37807
Phone: 1-865-992-8043

Union County Register of Deeds
Land records
901 Main St., Suite 108
Maynardville, TN 37807
Phone: 1-865-992-8024

Union County Circuit Court Clerk
Court records
901 Main St., Suite 220
Maynardville, TN 37807
Phone: 1-865-992-5493

Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
Sat. 9 a.m.-noon

History[edit | edit source]

East Tennessee county.

The origin of the county name is not entirely clear. Some believe it symbolized the unification of several East Tennessee counties at it's formation. Others point out Tennessee's desire to preserve the Union.[4]

Parent County[edit | edit source]

1850--Union County was created 3 January 1850 from Anderson, Campbell, Claiborne, Grainger, and Knox Counties.
County seat: Maynardville [5]

County Pronunciation[edit | edit source]

  1. Hear it spoken[6] (female)
  2. Hear it spoken[7] (male)

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

For animated maps illustrating Tennessee county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Tennessee County Boundary Maps" (1777-1985) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]


1870s and 1969 Fires damaged the courthouse records.[8]

  • Lost marriage records: 1854 to 1864
  • Lost probate records: 1854 to 1858

For suggestions about research in places that suffered historic record losses, see:

Places/Localities[edit | edit source]

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit HomeTown Locator. The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county:[9]

Unincorporated communities
Ghost towns

Neighboring Counties[edit | edit source]

Resources[edit | edit source]

Getting Started[edit | edit source]

Use the free Search for Surnames at Mountain Press's website to quickly search a variety of published Union County biography and cemetery records. To determine which books are being searched, or to search each publication's index individually, click here. You are now equipped with a checklist of books to pull off the shelves at a genealogy library, or a wish list for your personal book collection.

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

African American[edit | edit source]

United States African Americans Gotoarrow.png Tennessee African Americans

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Tombstone Transcriptions Online Tombstone Transcriptions in Print List of Cemeteries in the county
Findagrave.com Family History Library Findagrave.com
TNGenWeb WorldCat Billion Graves
TNGenWeb Archives Linkpendium
Tombstone Project TNGravestones
TNGenWeb Cemeteries
Billion Graves
See Tennessee Cemeteries for more information.

Additional Cemetery Resources

Census[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1860 6,117
1870 7,605 24.3%
1880 10,260 34.9%
1890 11,459 11.7%
1900 12,894 12.5%
1910 11,414 −11.5%
1920 11,615 1.8%
1930 11,371 −2.1%
1940 9,030 −20.6%
1950 8,670 −4.0%
1960 8,498 −2.0%
1970 9,072 6.8%
1980 11,707 29.0%
1990 13,694 17.0%
2000 17,808 30.0%
2010 19,109 7.3%
Source: "Wikipedia.org".
1860, 1870, 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, and 1940 federal population censuses of Union County are available online. For tips on accessing census records online, see Tennessee Census. If you're having trouble finding your ancestors in online indexes, try checking printed indexes. Created by local experts familiar with the area's families, these indexes are often transcribed more accurately than nationwide online indexes.

See Tennessee Population Schedule Indexes: Fiche, Film, or Book for more information about statewide printed indexes.

See Union County, TN census assignments, including links to transcribed files. The USGenWeb Census Project®.


  • Collins, Sonja and Evelyn Holloway. Transcription, Federal Census Schedule, Union County, Tennessee, 1860, Indexed: First Census of Union County. [Corryton, Tenn.]: S. Collins and E. Holloway, 1983. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2c 1860.


  • Collins, Sonja and Evelyn Holloway. Transcription, Federal Census Schedule, Union County, Tennessee, 1870, Indexed. Corryton, Tenn.: S. Collins and E. Holloway, 1983. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2c 1870.


  • Collins, Sonja and Evelyn Holloway. Transcription, Federal Census Schedule, Union County, Tennessee, 1880, Indexed. Corryton, Tenn.: S. Collins and E. Holloway, 1984. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2c 1880.
  • Sistler, Byron and Barbara Sistler. 1880 Census Union County, Tennessee. Nashville, Tenn.: B. Sistler & Associates, 1996. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2s 1880.


  • Collins, Sonja and Evelyn Holloway. Transcription, Federal Census Schedule, Union County, Tennessee, 1900, Indexed. Corryton, Tenn.: E. Holloway and S. Collins, 1985. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2c 1900.




Church[edit | edit source]

Court[edit | edit source]

Family Histories[edit | edit source]

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)


As of August 2010, a query for persons born in Union, Tennessee at World Connect, results in more than 30,000 entries.

  • Wilson, Marshall A. Families of Norris Reservoir Area. Clinton, Tennessee: Pellissippi Genealogical and Historical Society, 1986. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 D2w.
Norris Dam on the Clinch River in Eastern Tennessee was a project of the Tennessee Valley Authority in the 1930s. Nearly 3,000 families, totalling almost 14,000 persons, were required to vacate land that was to be inundated by the resulting reservoir. In connection with the removal of families and gravesites, Mr. Wilson, a TVA official, collected historical and genealogical information about Norris Valley residents; he presents information about 75 of those families, along with a brief chronology of the area. Each family record begins with the name of a father and the name of that man's father, con- tinuing through other ancestors of the direct male line back to the earliest one known. Families represented by ten or more male heads of household include Agee, Carden, Hatmaker, Irwin, Longmire, Miller, Rice, and Sharp.


  • Baker - Nelson, Elmer R. The history and descendants of (William) Martin Baker and his wife Sarah M. Cook Chatsworth, California:E.R. Nelson, 1999.FHL book 929.273 B171. Digital version available at Family History Archives.
  • Cox - Cox, Idris Jacob and Dorisha Jane Cox Chargualaf. Our Cox Family History. Knoxville, Tenn.: I.J. Cox, 1999. FHL Book 929.273 C839ci.
  • Hickle - Hubbs, Ferol Frost. Hubbs - Frost and Allied Families. 1958. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 H862hf.
  • Monroe - Peters, Sam C. and Bonnie Heiskell Peters. Mark Monroe: An East Tennessee Pioneer and His Corn Crib. Knoxville, Tenn.: Union County Books, 2004. FHL 921.73 M757p
  • Ridenour - Ridenour, James. The Ridenour Families of Union County, Tennessee, 1850-1930. Maynardville, Tenn.: Union County Historical Society (Tennessee), 2004?. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 D2r.

Land[edit | edit source]

The original Union County Deed Books are kept at the County Courthouse. In the 1970s, TSLA microfilmed Deed Books A to P (1856-1900) and an accompanying Index (1856-1907). FHL copies: FHL US/CAN Films 976349-976357.

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Maps[edit | edit source]

Grainger CountyJefferson CountyKnox CountyAnderson CountyCampbell CountyClaiborne CountyTN UNION.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Military[edit | edit source]

War of 1812[edit | edit source]
  • Embry, Hermione D. "War of 1812 - Tennessee Pensioners on List - January 2, 1883," Ansearchin' News, Vol. 8, No. 3 (Jul. 1961):95-98. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 B2a v. 8 (1961); digital version at journal website. Includes Union County pensioners (pp. 97-98).
Civil War[edit | edit source]

Online Records

Regiments. Civil War service men from Union County served in various regiments. Men often joined a regiment or a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are the military units that were formed in or had many men from Union County:

Confederate Soldiers

Union Soldiers

Additional sources for Civil War soldiers from Union County:

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Many Tennessee newspapers are filmed and available at TSLA. Most of these newspapers may be accessed by interlibrary loan to libraries within Tennessee, although there are some newspapers which are not available in or outside of Tennessee. For further information regarding interlibrary loan policies and newspapers not available for interlibrary loan click here. For a list of newspapers available at the archives for Union County click on the following city:

Occupations[edit | edit source]

  • Miller, Alan N. East Tennessee's Forgotten Children: Apprentices from 1778 to 1911. Baltimore, Md.: Printed for Clearfield Company, Inc., by Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 2000. FHL US/CAN 976.8 U2m. Digital version at World Vital Records ($). Purchase at Genealogical.com. Includes Union County.

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Tap into the minds of local experts. Editors of genealogical periodicals publish unique sources that researchers who are new to their area would not likely discover. This type of material may be found in local, regional, or statewide genealogical society journals. The following periodicals cover this county:

Pathways History and Genealogical Journal
"A quarterly publication of the Union County Historical Society" organized in 1980.
The Family History Library has most volumes to the present time. FHL US/CAN 976.8935 H25p
Indexed at PERiodical Source Index (PERSI)
Digital copies of Pathways Historical and Genealogical Journal:Union County Historical Society Volumes 18,21,25,26 available at Family History Archives.
The Pellissippian
Several genealogical articles with abstracts of Union County, Tennessee Genealogy records were published in the The Pellissippian (25 vols., 1980-2004), the quarterly of the Pellissippi Genealogical and Historical Society. The society has posted tables of contents for all 25 volumes on their website. They also have back issues available for purchase. The Family History Library has acquired the first 20 volumes FHL Book 976.8 D25p.

Family History Library has volumes 2 and 3 (Feb 2006 - Oct 2007)
For additional information see website: http://www.unioncountytn.com/history/default.htm. Website includes Volume 3, Issue 3 May/June 2007 online.

Prisons[edit | edit source]

Learn if your Union County ancestors went to prison!

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

The original Union County Will Books are kept at the County Courthouse.

Online Records

FamilySearch has placed scans of the following records online in the Tennessee, Probate Court Books, 1795-1927 collection. These are browse-only collections. Handwritten indexes may be found at the front or back of some volumes:

  • Inventories, Wills, 1875-1911 (Vol. B)
  • Claims against estates, 1872-1915
  • Settlements, 1856-1902 (6 vols.)

In 1974, TSLA microfilmed:

  • Wills and Inventories Book B (1875-1911)
  • Administrators' Settlements Books B to D (1859-1899)
  • Guardians' Settlements 1856-1902
  • Claims against Estates 1872-1915.

FHL copies: FHL Film 976335-976340.

Taxation[edit | edit source]

The original Union County Tax Duplicates, 1854-1860, 1869-1874, and 1893 are kept at the County Courthouse. In the 1970s, TSLA microfilmed these records. FHL copies: FHL US/CAN Films 976359-976360.

The following Union County tax records have been abstracted and/or indexed:[10]

  • 1854 - Tax List, Districts 1-10, 1854, Pathways, Vol. 3, No. 3 (Jul. 1984); Vol. 3, No. 4 (Oct. 1984); Vol. 4, No. 1 (Jan. 1985); Vol. 4, No. 2 (Apr. 1985); Vol. 4, No. 4 (Oct. 1985); Vol. 5, No. 3 (Jul. 1986); Vol. 5, No. 4 (Oct. 1986); Vol. 6, No. 1 (Mar. 1987); Vol. 6, No. 2 (Jun. 1987); Vol. 6, No. 3 (Sep. 1987). For access, see Periodicals.
  • 1855 - Tax List, Districts 1-10, 1855, Pathways, Vol. 6, No. 4 (Dec. 1987); Vol. 7, No. 2 (Jun. 1988); Vol. 7, No. 3 (Sep. 1988); Vol. 7, No. 4 (Dec. 1988); Vol. 8, No. 1 (Mar. 1989); Vol. 8, No. 2 (Jun. 1989); Vol. 8, No. 3 (Sep. 1989); Vol. 8, No. 4 (Dec. 1989); Vol. 9, No. 1 (Mar. 1990); Vol. 9, No. 2 (Jun. 1990). For access, see Periodicals.
  • 1856 - Tax List, Districts 1-10, 1856, Pathways, Vol. 9, No. 4 (Dec. 1990); Vol. 10, No. 1 (Mar. 1991); Vol. 10, No. 2 (Jun. 1991); Vol. 10, No. 3 (Sep. 1991); Vol. 10, No. 4 (Dec. 1991); Vol. 11, No. 1 (Mar. 1992); Vol. 11, No. 2 (Jun. 1992); Vol. 11, No. 3 (Sep. 1992); Vol. 11, No. 4 (Dec. 1992). For access, see Periodicals.
  • 1857 - Tax List, Districts 1-10, 1857, Pathways, Vol. 12, No. 1 (Mar. 1993); Vol. 12, No. 2 (Jun. 1993); Vol. 12, No. 3 (Sep. 1993); Vol. 12, No. 4 (Dec. 1993); Vol. 13, No. 1 (Mar. 1994); Vol. 13, No. 2 (Jun. 1994); Vol. 14, No. 2 (Jun. 1995); Vol. 14, No. 3 (Sep. 1995); Vol. 14, No. 4 (Dec. 1995); Vol. 15, No. 1 (Mar. 1996); Vol. 15, No. 2 (Jun. 1996); Vol. 15, No. 3 (Sep. 1996); Vol. 15, No. 4 (Nov. 1996); Vol. 16, No. 1 (Mar. 1997); Vol. 16, No. 2 (Jun. 1997); Vol. 16, No. 3 (Sep. 1997); Vol. 16, No. 4 (Dec. 1997); Vol. 17, No. 1 (Mar. 1998); Vol. 17, No. 2 (Jun. 1998). For access, see Periodicals.
  • 1858 - Tax List, Districts 1-10, 1858, Pathways, Vol. 17, No. 3 (Sep. 1998); Vol. 17, No. 4 (Dec. 1998); Vol. 18, No. 1 (Mar. 1999); Vol. 18, No. 2 (Jun. 1999); Vol. 18, No. 3 (Sep. 1999); Vol. 18, No. 4 (Dec. 1999); Vol. 19, No. 1 (Mar. 2000); Vol. 19, No. 2 (Jun. 2000); Vol. 19, No. 3 (Sep. 2000). For access, see Periodicals.
  • 1859 - Tax List, 1859, Pathways, Vol. 19, No. 4 (Dec. 2000); Vol. 23, No. 1 (Mar. 2004); Vol. 23, No. 2 (Sep. 2004). For access, see Periodicals.
  • 1860 - Tax List, 1860, Pathways, Vol. 24, No. 1 (Mar. 2005); Vol. 24, No. 2 (Jun. 2005); Vol. 24, No. 4 (Dec. 2005); Vol. 25, No. 2 (Jun. 2006); Vol. 25, No. 3 (Sep. 2006); Vol. 26, No. 1 (Mar. 2007); Vol. 26, No. 2 (Jun. 2007). For access, see Periodicals.

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

See also How to order Tennessee Vital Records or order electronically online.

Birth[edit | edit source]
Marriage[edit | edit source]

The original Union County Marriage Books are kept at the County Courthouse. Antebellum marriage registers no longer survive, but published transcripts include a few alternative marriage sources for the 1850s. The original records have been microfilmed:

Online Records

Additional Resources

Union County's marriage records have been abstracted multiple times. Each editor followed similar abstraction standards:

  • 1856-1975 - Collins, Betty VanOver. Union County, Tennessee, Marriages. 2 vols. Knoxville, Tenn.: B.J. Collins, 2000. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 V29cb v. 1 ff. Abstracts names of brides and grooms, ages, marriage dates; includes annotations taken from family Bibles, Civil War records, and other manuscripts.
  • 1864-1895 - Union County Marriage Index 1864-1895 in International Genealogical Index at FamilySearch.org - free.[12]
  • 1864-1900 - Hickle, Wanda Wilmouth. Tennessee, Union County, Marriage Applications and Licenses, 1864-1900. Luttrell, Tenn.: W.W. Hickle, 1983. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 V2h. Abstracts names of brides, grooms, and officiators, as well as dates of license and marriage; includes annotations taken from additional sources.
  • 1901-1916 - Collins, Sonja. Union County, Tennessee, Marriage Applications and Licenses, 1901-1916. Corryton, Tenn.: S. Collins, 1985. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 V2cs. Abstracts names of brides, grooms, and officiators, as well as dates of license and marriage.
Death[edit | edit source]

For deaths of Methodists in Union County between the 1830s and the 1920s, try searching the following records:

Societies and Libraries[edit | edit source]

See also a List of Tennessee Archives, Libraries, Publications, Historical & Genealogical Societies

  • Maynardville Public Library
    296 Main St.
    Maynardville, TN 37807
    Phone: 1-865-992-7106
    Fax: 1-865-992-0202
    E-mail mayna2bi@comcast.net
    Hours: Mon. and Fri. 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
    Tues. and Thurs. 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
    Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

Family History Centers
[edit | edit source]

Union County Tennessee Genealogy Websites[edit | edit source]

Wikipedia has more about this subject: Union County, Tennessee

Union County Tennessee Genealogy References[edit | edit source]

  1. Wikipedia contributors, "Union, Tennessee" in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Union_County,_Tennessee accessed 09 Jan 2019
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Union County, Tennessee. Page 638-645 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), 637-640.
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Union County, Tennessee page 644, At various libr40ries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  4. "List of counties in Tennessee," Wikipedia.
  5. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), 644. (FHL Book 973 D27e 2002). WorldCat entry.
  6. Voice of Lynnae Weller, Kingsport, Tenn. (2010).
  7. Voice of Gene Black, FamilySearch employee, former resident of Bristol, Tenn. (2010).
  8. Lost Records: Courthouse Fires and Disasters in Tennessee in Tennessee State Library and Archives in Tennessee Secretary of State (accessed 22 March 2016).
  9. Wikipedia contributors, "Union County, Tennessee," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Union_County%2C_Tennessee, accessed 14 December 2019.
  10. The Heritage Quest Online version of PERSI aided in the compilation of this list.
  11. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/images/6/64/Igitennessees.pdf.
  12. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/images/6/64/Igitennessees.pdf.