Monroe County, Tennessee Genealogy

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Monroe County, Tennessee
Boundary map of Monroe County, Tennessee
Map of Tennessee highlighting Monroe County
Location in the state of Tennessee
Map of the U.S. highlighting Tennessee
Location of Tennessee in the U.S.
Founded: November 13, 1819
County Seat Madisonville
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United States  Gotoarrow.png  Tennessee  Gotoarrow.png  Monroe County
East Tennessee county. Established 1819.

Quick Dates

Monroe County's civil records start the following years:[1]

Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate
1881 1838  1908  1830  1820  1836 

County Courthouse

Monroe County Courthouse, Madisonville, Tenn.
Monroe County Courthouse
103 College St.
Madisonville, TN 37354
Phone: 1-423-442-5940

Monroe County Clerk
Marriage, probate and court records
103 College St., Suite 1
Madisonville, TN 37354
Phone: 1-423-442-2220

Monroe County Register of Deeds
Land records
103 College St., Suite 3
Madisonville, TN 37354
Phone: 1-423-442-2440

Mon., Tues., Thurs., Fri. 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Wed. and Sat. 8:30 a.m.-Noon


President James Monroe (1758-1831)

The county is named after President James Monroe (1758-1831).[2]

Parent County

1819--Monroe County was established 13 November 1819 from Cherokee Indian Lands.
County seat: Madisonville [3]

County Pronunciation

  1. Hear it spoken[4] (female)
  2. Hear it spoken[5] (female)

Boundary Changes

"Rotating Formation Tennessee County Boundary Maps" (1777-1985) may be viewed for free at the My Tennessee Genealogy website. They rely on AniMap 3.0 software.

Record Loss

1860--Civil War damaged records

  • Lost censuses: 1820, 1890
  • Lack of marriage records: 1819 to 1837
  • Lost probate: 1819 to 1835

Although these are not burned records, applying strategies used for burned counties may aid in compensating for their loss. For further information on researching in burned counties, see the following:


Populated Places

Acorn Conasauga Mill Ivy Rural Vale
arden East Sweetwater Jalapa Sandy Lane
Belltown Ellis Mill Kincaid Smithfield
Belltown Mill Epperson Lakeside Stakely Mill
Bethlehem Eve Mills Little River (hist.) Sweetwater
Big Creek Fagin Madisonville Tariffville
Brakebill (hist.) Fairlane McGhee Tellico Plains
Bullet Creek Fort Loudon Mialoquo (hist.) Tennessee (hist.)
Caringer (hist.) Gudger Mountainville (hist.) Tommotley (hist.)
Cataska Halfway Town (hist.) Mount Vernon Toqua
Chestnut Valley Hiwassee College Mount Zion Towee Falls (hist.)
Chestuee Ho (hist.) Northpoint Tuskeegee (hist.)
Chilhowey (hist.) Holly springs Notchy Creek Vonore
Chota (hist.) Hopewell Mill Oak Grove Waucheesi
Christianburg Hopewell Springs Old Sweetwater Wood
Citico (hist.) Howard Rafter
Citico Beach Ipe (hist.) Rockville
Coker Creek Ironsburg Rocky Spring

Neighboring Counties


Getting Started

Use the free Search for Surnames at Mountain Press's website to quickly search a variety of published Monroe County biography, cemetery, church, court, land, probate, and tax 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

African American

United States African Americans Gotoarrow.png Tennessee African Americans


Tennessee cemetery records often identify birth, death, relationship, and military information, as well as religious affiliation.

  • Find A Grave can be searched by the name of a person or family to find where a person is buried.  Usually gives birth and death dates often with a picture of the tombstone.  May give obituaries, names of family members and links to their information in Find A Grave.


1830, 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, and 1930 federal population censuses of Monroe 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 Monroe TN census assignments, including links to transcribed files. [The USGenWeb Census Project®].

1820 - Lost

1820 Manufactures

The original manufactures schedules for the Eastern and Western Districts of Tennessee are kept at NARA, Washington, D.C. FHL copies: FHL US/CAN Films 1024517-1024518.

The following book is a useful aid for finding the original records. A free online index, provided by Lineages, which cites the original document numbers, will help researchers determine if this resource can be of assistance: 

  • National Archives. Indexes to Manufactures Census of 1820. 1920; reprint, Knightstown, Ind.: Bookmark, 1977. FHL US/CAN Book 973 X2m 1820; digital version at Lineages. [Covers this county.]

These records have also been abstracted:

  • 1820 Census of Manufactures: Monroe County, East Tennessee Roots, Vol. 5, No. 4 ():180. For availability, see Periodicals.



1840 Revolutionary War Pensioners




  • Wolfe, Violet Kirkpatrick, Kathleen Miller, Jim Steed, Carolyn Snider, and Vonore Historical Society. 1920 Monroe County, TN Census. 2 vols. Vonore, Tenn.: Vonore Historical Society, 2000. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8883 X29w 1920 v. 1 ff.


Church records include baptisms, marriages and burials, as well as information about family members and clues about family migration.  For additional information about church records, religions, and religious archives in Tennessee, see Tennessee Church Records.

  • Monroe County Church Records
- Family History Library Catalog - Monroe County Church Records
  • If the records you need are not in the Family History Library collection, contact the church(es) in the area where your ancestor lived.  Two sites that give information about churches in Monroe County are:
- List of Monroe County churches with addresses and phone numbers (Yellowbook)
- List of Monroe County churches (TN HomeTownLocator)

  • In 1936, a helpful guide to early Monroe County church records was published by the Works Project Administration. [6]Use this guide to locate which church records exist and where they were housed in 1936. The Tennessee State Library and Archives has filmed some of these records. To locate which records are available at the TSLA, go to the appropriate "county fact sheet" on the TSLA Web site and scroll down to "selected manuscript material". All filmed church records at the TSLA for Monroe County are listed. Many of these filmed records are also available at the Family History Library.


  • [1824-1860] Pond Creek Baptist Church. Church minutes, 1824-1860. Nashville, Tennessee: Historical Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, 196-? Manuscript. FHL 984308 Item 2
  • [1853-1972]  Notchey Creek Baptist Church Records. Madisonville, 1853-1972. TSLA Reel #428
  • [1853-1900] Sistler, Byron and Barbara Sistler. Vital Statistics from 19th Century Tennessee Church Records. Nashville: Sitler and Associates, 1979. FHL 976.8 K29s vol.2   Index to Notchey Creek Baptist Church Records. Madisonville, 1853-1972.


Family Histories

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 Monroe, Tennessee at World Connect, results in more than 50,000 entries.

  • Monroe County Heritage Book Committee. Monroe County, Tennessee Heritage, 1819-1997: Established 1819, Monroe County, Tennessee. [Salem, W. Va.]: Walsworth Pub. Co., 1997. FHL 976.8883 H2m
  • Vonore Historical Society. Vonore Families: Yesterday and Today. 2 vols. Vonore, Tenn.: Vonore Historical Society, 1996-1997. FHL 976.8883/V1 H2v v. 1


  • [Bell] Buland, Geraldine Joy Brown. Silas Bell of Wayne County, Kentucky (1787-186-): Blount and Monroe Counties, Tennessee; Murray County, Georgia; Titus County, Texas [and] Sons and Daughters to Dade and Lawrence Counties, Missouri; Pawnee County, Oklahoma; and Fayette County, Texas: Allied Lines [of] Aley, Byerly, Carter, Hall, Harrell, Loy, Mashburn, Wilson. Sepulpa, Oklahoma: Buland, Geraldine Joy Brown, 1978. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 B413f.
  • [Bent] See Carson.
  • [Blankenship] Blankinship, Leslie C. The Blankenship Family History. New Orleans, La.?: J. Q. Blankinship, 1967. Available at FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 B611bL; digital version at Heritage Quest Online ($).
  • [Blankensop] See Blankenship.
  • [Blankingship] See Blankenship.
  • [Boggs] See Boggs.
  • [Carson] McClung, Quantrille D. Carson-Bent-Boggs Genealogy. [Denver]: Denver Public Library, 1962. Available at FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 C239; digital version at Heritage Quest Online ($).
  • [Davis] Shepard, Kelly Rae Wilson. The Descendants of Clem Davis and Rachel Emaline Peak: with an Emphasis on the Descendants of James Ervin Davis and the Connecting Lines of John C. Payne, Thomas C. E. Davis, William Robert Daniell and Henry Lenderman. The Colony, Texas: K. Shepard, 1997. FHL 929.273 D291s  
  • [Day] Day, James Edward. Descendants of Christopher Day of Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Los Angeles?: J.E. Day, 1958. Available at FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 D33d; FHL US/CAN Film 978076; digital versions at Ancestry ($); and Heritage Quest Online ($).
  • [Dodd] Austin, Kim The Descendants of George Berry Dodd and Martha Lavinna Teffteller [S.I. : s.n.], 1995 FHL book 929.273 D661. Digital version available at BYU Family History Archives.
  • [Harmon] Banes, Verna Baker. Harmon Family Research: Taken from the Verna Baker Banes Genealogical Collection. MSS., microfilmed 1996. FHL 1598444 Item 4
  • [Hart] Hart, Charles Coffin. Joseph Hart and His Descendants. St. Louis, Mo.: R.P. Studley & Co., 1901. FHL 928166 Item 4. Free digital version online.
  • [Henderson] Mitchell, Reba Henderson. The Family of Samuel Henderson (1786-1867) of Monroe County, Tennessee: A Genealogical and Historical Record of Samuel Henderson and His Wife, Nancy Blair, Their Twelve Children and Their Descendants to the Present Generation. Manisonville, Tenn.: R.H. Mitchell, 1980. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 A1 no. 3154.
  • [Hensley] Schreibman, Laura and Laura Hensley. The Hensleys of Ballplay, Monroe County, Tennessee. Hazel Park, Michigan: L. Schreibman, 199-?. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 A1 no. 6391.
  • [Jones] Hall, Evelyn Cook and William C. Hall. The Jefferson Thomas Jones Genealogy: Being a History of Jefferson Thomas Jones, Born 14 Aug. 1828 near Madisonville, Monroe Co., Tenn. and Later Living in Park, Greene Co., Ind. and His Descendants of Tennessee, Indiana, Iowa, etc.: Also Allied Families. [Nevada, Iowa]: E.C. Hall, 1985. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 J718h.
  • [Moser] Corder, Lula Lee and Pauline Moser Shook. Moser Family History, Monroe County, Tenn.:
    Descendants of Leonard Moser, c1716-1782
    . 2 vols. [Sandpoint, Idaho]: P.M. Shook, 1983. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 M853cs ff.
  • [Moses] Ward, Edith Croft. The Moses Families of Big Creek: The Family Pages of Joshua and Sarah Samples Moses and Related Families, Monroe County, Tennessee. Clinton, Tenn.: E.C. Ward, 1995. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 M853w.
  • [Peak] Shepard, Kelly Rae Wilson. The Descendants of Clem Davis and Rachel Emaline Peak: with an Emphasis on the Descendants of James Ervin Davis and the Connecting Lines of John C. Payne, Thomas C. E. Davis, William Robert Daniell and Henry Lenderman. The Colony, Texas: K. Shepard, 1997. FHL 929.273 D291s
  • [Wolfe] Feezell, Mina Belle Wolfe and Violet Kirkpatrick Wolfe. John Peeler Wolfe: Ancestors and Descendants, 1765-1992. [Englewood, Tenn.]: M. Feezell, [1993]. FHL 929.273 W832fm; digital version at BYU Family History Archives.


TSLA microfilmed the original Monroe County Deed Books A to Z (1820-1892), Trust Deed Books A to D (1868-1894) and Indexes to both (1820-1910). FHL copies: FHL US/CAN Microfilms 956238-956248.

Law and Legislation

  • Tennessee State Library and Archives, Acts of Tennessee 1796-1850: Index to Names. January 25, 2005. [In addition to creating new laws, legislative acts were often required to obtain a divorce, grant legitimacy to a child, or for appointments to or grant payments for public service.] TSLA has created an index to names that appear in these acts covering the years 1796 to 1850. To read more about this valuable resource Click here. The searchable index is available at TSLA; another version is available at World Vital Records.

Local Histories



Indian Wars

  • Narrative of Capt. Handly, Capture, 1793, American Historical Magazine, Vol. 2, No. 1 (Jan. 1897).

Revolutionary War

The following Monroe County Revolutionary War records are available online through TNGenWeb:

Additional resources include:

War of 1812

Civil War

Civil War service men from Monroe 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 Monroe County.

Confederate Soldiers

Union Soldiers

Additional sources for Civil War soldiers from Monroe County:


  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 Monroe County click on the following cities:


  • 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 [Includes Monroe County.]


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:

Ansearchin' News
Genealogical articles with abstracts of records of Monroe County, Tennessee have been published in Ansearchin' News, the quarterly magazine of the Tennessee Genealogical Society. To view a list of these articles, visit their county index. To read digitized versions of the first 36 years of articles (Vols. 1-36), browse their archive or conduct a surname search. The Family History Library has a complete collection of the Ansearchin' News quarterly FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 B2a.
East Tennessee Roots
Genealogical articles with abstracts of Monroe County, Tennessee records have been published in East Tennessee Roots (10 vols.). A subject index to these articles is available online. Surname indexes to Volumes 9 and 10 are also available online. The Family History Library has collected most issues of East Tennessee Roots FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 D25e.
The Pellissippian
Genealogical articles with abstracts of Monroe County, Tennessee 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 US/CAN Book 976.8 D25p.

Learn if your Monroe County, Tennessee Genealogy ancestors went to prison!

Probate Records

TSLA microfilmed the original Monroe County Will Books 1 to 4 (1833 to 1922). FHL copy: FHL Film 956237.

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:

  • Wills, 1825-1922 (Vols. A, 1-4)

The organization Strictly By Name provides free online indexes to early Monroe County probate records. They offer a record retrieval service to photocopy and transcribe microfilm copies of the original documents for a small fee. Available indexes:

  1. Will Book 1: 1833-1860
  2. Will Books 2, 3, 4: 1860-1922

The following Monroe County probate records have been indexed:

  • [1833-1861] Sistler, Byron and Barbara Sistler. Index to Tennessee Wills & Administrations 1779-1861. Nashville, Tenn. Byron Sistler & Associates, Inc., 1990. FHL US/CAN 976.8 P22s. [Includes an index to this county's probate records.] Free Lookups Available! 


TSLA microfilmed the original Monroe County Tax Books 1868, 1874, 1899-1900. FHL copies: FHL US/CAN Films 956249-956250.

The following Monroe County tax records have been abstracted:[7]

Vital Records


Marriages were not officially recorded in Monroe County until 1838, when a law was passed mandating the practice.[8] The following publication, based on early newspapers, helps to alleviate this genealogical obstacle:

The following Monroe County Courthouse marriage records have been abstracted and/or indexed:

  • [1838-1870] Sistler, Byron and Barbara Sistler. Early East Tennessee Marriages. 2 vols. Nashville, Tenn.: Byron Sistler & Associates, Inc., 1987. FHL US/CAN 976.8 V2s v. 1. [Indexes names of brides and grooms, and marriage dates for weddings in this county for the specified years.] Free Lookups Available!

In 1940 and 1941, W.P.A. workers pinpointed the location of Monroe County divorce papers in diverse County Courthouse records, see:

  • W.P.A. Guide to Public Vital Statistics in Tennessee. Nashville, Tenn.: The Tennessee Historical Records Survey, 1941. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 A3gp.

For deaths of Methodists in Monroe County between the 1830s and the 1920s, try:

Societies and Libraries

  The Vonore Historical Society
C/O The Vonore Library
611 Church St.
Vonore, TN 37885

Madisonville Public Library
4023 Hwy 411 North Unit C
Madisonville, TN 37354
Phone: 1-423-442-4085

Monroe County Historical Society, Inc.
Affiliate Chapter of the East Tennessee Historical Society
P. O. Box 359
Sweetwater, TN 37874

East Tennessee Historical Society
601 S. Gay Street
P.O. Box 1629
Knoxville, TN 37901-1629
Phone: 1-865-215-8824

Family History Centers

Web Sites

Wikipedia has more about this subject: Monroe County, Tennessee


  1. Guide to Public Vital Statistics in Tennessee. Nashville, Tenn.: The Tennessee Historical Records Survey (W.P.A.), 1941; "Earliest County Records," Tennessee State Library and Archives.
  2. "List of counties in Tennessee," Wikipedia.
  3. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), 642. (FHL Collection Ref Book 973 D27e 2002). WorldCat entry.
  4. Voice of Joyce Gaston Reece, Friends of the Archives Historical and Preservation Society, Monroe Co., TN., Secretary and American Local History Network, Board of Directors, Vice President (2010).
  5. Voice of Lynnae Weller, Kingsport, Tenn. (2010).
  6. WPA. Guide to Church Vital Statistics in Tennessee. Nashville: Tennessee State Planning Commission, 1942. FHL 976.8 K23w
  7. The Heritage Quest Online version of PERSI aided in the compilation of this list.
  8. Gale Williams Bamman, C.G., "Research in Tennessee," National Genealogical Society Quarterly, Vol. 81, No. 2 (June 1993):105. FHL US/CAN Book 973 B2ng v. 81 (1993)