Rains County, Texas Genealogy

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County Courthouse

Rains County Courthouse
PO Box 187;
Emory, TX 75440-0187
Phone: 903.473.2461 

County Clerk has birth records from 1902, divorce records
from 1903, marriage, divorce and land records from 1880
and probate records from 1894[1]


Rains County's first courthouse was a log building. It was used until a two-room courthouse was built in 1871; this second courthouse burned in 1879. The log building was again used as a temporary courthouse until two-story building could be built in 1884. The 1884 courthouse burned in 1908. Rains County's current courthouse, shown at right, is the county's fourth Courthouse. It was built in 1908.

Rains County Courthouse
167 E. Quitman Street
P. O. Box 158
Emory, Texas 75440

Rains County Government Website


The first Anglo-American arrived in the 1840's.

Parent County

1870--Rains County was created 9 June 1870 from Hopkins, Hunt, and Wood Counties. County seat: Emory [2]

Boundary Changes

Record Loss

1879 - Rains County Courthouse, built in 1871, burned; All county records were destroyed.
1908 - Rains County Courthouse, built in 1884, burned. County records were save in a fireproof vault.

Places / Localities

Populated Places

Alba | Dougherty | East Tawakoni | Emory | Point

Neighboring Counties






Local Histories

  • Early Days in Texas and Rains County, 1917 by William Oscar Hebison and Ambrose Fitzgerald.
  • 100th Anniversary of Rains County, 1970
  • Rains County History from the Handbook of Texas Online


Texas Counties Map. Click on the county to go to the TXGenWeb site.





Vital Records

  • Texas Death Index 1964 to 1998 [no images] Name index to Texas Statewide Death Certificates or four million people who have died since 1964.
  • Texas Death Records 1890 – 1976 [with images]
    Name index and images of statewide death certificates, 1890-1976. The name index has been created by FamilySearch and is tied to images of the Texas death certificates. Few certificates are available prior to 1903.

Societies and Libraries

OPHGR (Organization for the Preservation of Historical and Genealogical Records)
P. Vinson, President
Canton, TX
email: ophgr1@gmail.com
Website: http://www.ophgr.com

These folks go to county courthouses, churches and other places where old documents and records are housed. They either scan the very old records with their oversized scanner or they transcribe those old documents and then publish them as books. Membership is $10.00/year if you have an email address and you get their Newsletter sent to you quarterly. Visit their web site for Publication Listings as well as membership information.

They also host several workshops during the year. Topics include: Beginning Researcher, Internet Research, Beginner Computer Help as well as Native American/Melungeon/African American Research.

Web Sites

  • Betty's World Genealogical information on Betty's Families of Abney, Boxley, Bradberry, Breazeale, Brown, Carter, Middleton, Norman, Pickens, Phillips, Stone, Summers, Tinsley, Wade, Wills/Wells, and General Andrew Pickens.
  • TXGenWeb project. May have maps, name indexes, history or other information for this county. Select the county.
  • Family History Library Catalog


  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Rains County, Texas. Page 672 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).

Rains county; PO Box 187; Emory, TX 75440-0187; Ph. 903.473.2461 Details: (Co Clk has b rec from 1902, d rec from 1903, m, div & land rec from 1880 & pro rec from 1894)