McDonald County, Missouri Genealogy

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United States
McDonald County
Guide to McDonald County, Missouri ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.


McDonald County, Missouri
Map of Missouri highlighting McDonald County
Location in the state of Missouri
Map of the U.S. highlighting Missouri
Location of Missouri in the U.S.
Founded March 3, 1849
County Seat Pineville
Address McDonald County Courthouse
Hwy W;
Pinneville, MO 64856-0665
Phone: 417.223.4717
McDonald County Website

County Information

McDonald County, Missouri Record Dates

Beginning Dates for Major County Records[1]
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate
1856 1865 1850 1853 1866

County Courthouse

Recorder of Deeds has marriage records; Clerk of the Circuit Court has divorce, court and land records; Probate Judge has probate records.[2]


Parent County

1849 McDonald County was created 3 March 1849 from Newton County. County seat: Pineville. [3]

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating Missouri county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Missouri County Boundary Maps" (1804-1889) may be viewed for free at the website.

Record Loss

1856 Log courthouse was demolished.
1863 Courthouse burned, destroying most records. Deeds before 1863 were recreated.

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


Town/city records in the FamilySearch Catalog

Populated Places

Neighboring Counties

Barry  • Benton County, Arkansas  • Delaware County, Oklahoma  • Newton  • Ottawa County, Oklahoma

McDonald CountyNewton CountyJasper CountyLawrence CountyGreene CountyChristian CountyStone CountyMadison CountyCarroll CountyLabette CountyBarry CountyDelaware CountyOttawa CountyMayes CountyCherokee CountyCraig CountyBenton CountyAdair CountyWashington CountyWagoner CountyCherokee CountyMOMcDonald1.JPG




Tombstone Transcriptions Online Tombstone Transcriptions in Print List of Cemeteries in the county Family History Library
MOGenWeb WorldCat Billion Graves
MOGenWeb Archives
Tombstone Project
Billion Graves
See Missouri Cemeteries for more information.



Church records and the information they provide 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 Missouri denominations, view the Missouri Church Records wiki page.



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 Missouri Land and Property for information about records of land transfers from the government to private ownership. After that transfer, transactions were usually recorded and are currently housed at the county courthouse.

Local Histories

Local histories are available for McDonald County, Missouri 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 Missouri Local Histories.

  • History of Newton, Lawrence, Barry and McDonald counties, Missouri. From the earliest time to the present. Chicago, The Goodspeed Pub. Co., 1888.
  • Sturges, J. A. Illustrated history of McDonald County, Missouri, from the earliest settlement to the present time. Pineville, Mo. : Sturges, 1897.
  • Taylor, Joe. McDonald County, Missouri, 1849-1949 : 100 years of history and progress. Noel Mo. : McDonald County Centennial Committee, 1949.




Civil War

Online Records


Service men in McDonald County, Missouri served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in McDonald County, Missouri:

- 11th Regiment, Missouri Infantry - Confederate, Company E
- 11th Regiment, Missouri Infantry - Confederate, Company E
- 11th Regiment, Missouri Infantry - Confederate, Company F
- 11th Regiment, Missouri Infantry - Confederate, Company F
- 16th Regiment, Missouri Cavalry - Confederate, Company G
- 16th Regiment, Missouri Cavalry - Confederate, Company H
World War II

Naturalization and Citizenship


Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as McDonald County, Missouri Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:


Probate records include wills, bonds, petitions, accounts, inventories, administrations, orders, decrees, and distributions. For further information, see United States Probate Records.

In Missouri, probate records have usually been recorded by the clerks of the probate courts, but in some counties the common pleas or circuit courts handled this function. They are frequently indexed.

Online Probate Records


Taxes were levied on free white males over 21 and slaves aged 21 to 60. These persons are referred to as "polls." Tax listings, or digests, of a county generally list the taxable landowners and other polls and the amount of tax. The records for each county are divided by militia district. For more information see the wiki page Missouri Taxation.

Vital Records

Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths. For additional guidance on researching and using vital records, see United States Vital Records or How to order Missouri Vital Records.

St. Louis and Kansas City recorded births and deaths starting as early as 1850 for deaths and 1870 for births.  The Missouri Department of Health began keeping birth and death records in 1909. County records vary by year and the county. A copy or an extract of most original records can be purchased from the Missouri Vital Records State Department of Health, the County Clerk's office or order electronically online.


Genealogy Societies, Archives and Libraries

List of Missouri Archives, Libraries, Publications, Historical & Genealogical Societies

McDonald County Genealogy Society at
McDonald County Library
808 Bailey Road
Pineville, MO 64856
Phone: 417-223-4489

Historical Society

McDonald County Historical Society
P. O. Box 572
Pineville, MO 64856
Phone: 417-223-7700


McDonald County Library
808 Bailey Road
Pineville, MO 64856
Phone: 417-223-4489

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.


Sites with online indexes or images of records
Missouri Digital Heritage Free digital images of many types of records from institutions across the State
MOGenWeb Free Data may be submitted by individuals or complete transcriptions
USGenWeb Archives Free Data may be submitted by individuals or may be complete transcriptions
Sites that search for links pertaining to McDonald County, Missouri Genealogy
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 ($)
CyndisList Free Click links. Some sites they link to may have fees ($)
StateofUS Free family history resources and government records
Missouri Genealogy Free Click links. Some sites they link to may have fees ($)
Major catalogs for hard copy collections of McDonald County, Missouri Genealogy
Books, microfilm, or manuscripts of genealogical records
FamilySearch catalog Select topics. To select towns, add a comma to the search box.
WorldCat To find nearby libraries that have specific items, see WorldCat Online Catalog.
Allen County Public Library Major genealogy resource library, located in Indiana. On home page enter "McDonald Missouri" and search catalog.
Missouri State Archives Library catalog; from this page you must search "McDonald County"
See also local libraries and Missouri Archives and Libraries
Social networking sites pertaining to McDonald County, Missouri Genealogy
Google+ Missouri Genealogy Network Community
Facebook list of groups from "Missouri Genealogy" search McDonald County Message Board


  1. Alice Eichholz, Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, Revised ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1992), 422-438. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27rb 1992
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), McDonald County, Missouri. Page 402 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  4. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at