Ray County, Missouri Genealogy
Guide to Ray County Missouri genealogy. Birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.
|___ County, Missouri|
Location of Missouri in the U.S.
|Founded||November 16, 1820|
|Address|| Ray County Courthouse|
100 W Main Street;
PO Box 536
Richmond, MO 64085-0536
Ray County Website
- 1 County Courthouse
- 2 History
- 3 Places/Localities
- 4 Resources
- 4.1 Cemeteries
- 4.2 Census
- 4.3 Church
- 4.4 Court
- 4.5 Land
- 4.6 Local Histories
- 4.7 Maps
- 4.8 Military
- 4.9 Newspapers
- 4.10 Probate
- 4.11 Taxation
- 4.12 Vital Records
- 5 Societies and Libraries
- 6 Web Sites
- 7 References
County Clerk has birth and death records 1883-1884;
Recorder Deeds has marriage and land records;
Clerk Circuit Court has divorce and court recrods;
Probate Judge has probate records. (Records of interest
to genealogists obtainable from Ray County Historical
Society, Richmond, Missouri 64085)
- See an interactive map of Ray County border changes at N2Genealogy.
- The State Historical Society of Missouri has information on historical Missouri place names for all Missouri Counties.
- Cemetery Records Ray County, Missouri Genealogy Trails
- Shotwell Cemetery, Richmond BillionGraves
- Sunny Slope Cemetery, Richmond
- Woodland Cemetery, Richmond
- Odell Cemetery (also known as Roe Baptist Church cemetery)
Three of the cemeteries in this county, Shotwell, Sunny Slope, and Richmond, are on the north side of Highway 10 (Main Street) and are all together almost as if they were all one cemetery.
For tips on accessing Ray County, Missouri Genealogy census records online, see: Missouri Census.
New Hope Church, near Richmond, Ray County, Missouri, was the first church of any faith to organized (1820) in this county. (Transcript of records at Primitive Baptist Library in Carthage, Illinois.)
- "Churches of Ray county, Missouri" Ray County Genealogical Association.
- Church and Family History Assistance for Ray County, Missouri Primative Baptist Family History website. (1847-1877 Crooked River Church records recently donated.)
- Woods, Fred D. Name Index to the First Twenty Years of Ray County, Missouri, Circuit Court records, 1820-1840 FHL
- The Missouri State Archives has the index (1821-1872) to the circuit court records, and Vols A-O (1821-1882) in microfilm.
- Missouri, Ray County Circuit Court. Court Records, 1821-1882; Index to Court records, 1821-1888. FHL
The Missouri State Archives has Vol A (1820-1837) Minutes (County Clerk) on microfilm.
Court of Common Pleas
The Missouri State Archives has the Common Plea Index, Vol A, 1867-1874 and the Common Pleas book, Vol A, 1867-1870 on microfilm.
Justice of the Peace
Docket, 1836-1851 is available at the Missouri State Archives.
- Google has scanned the book "History of Ray County, Mo." as the book is now in the public domain. It was written in 1881 and can be found at books.google.com/books .
- Also Google has the book "A History of Northwest Missouri" written in 1915, also in the public domain. This book has history on Ray county and neigboring counties. It can be found at books.google.com/books .
- Map of Ray County townships (Histopolis)
- The University of Missouri Digital Library has digital copies of Missouri county plat books (ca. 1930) for all Missouri counties including Ray County. The city of St. Louis is not included in this collection.
Indian Wars (Black Hawk 1832, Seminole War 1837, Osage War 1837, Mormon War, Heatherly War 1836)
- Service Records
- Pensions and Claims, 1892-1926
1846-1848 Mexican War
Some Ray county residents served in the Santa Fe Battalion of the Missouri Mounted Volunteers. (This unit compiled its own record.)
- Service Records
- Pensions and Claims, 1887-1926
- Newspaperarchive.com ($) has historical newspapers available on-line. Their database has Chillicothe newspapers from the late 1800's and early 1900's that covered local news on residents from Ray County communities.
A unique aspect of Ray county wills is that the people who legally should be referred to as executors are referred to as administrators.
Ray county, Probate Court. Wills, Letters & Bonds, 1821-1915. Missouri State Archives microfilm.
Ray county, Probate Court. Bonds, Vol B, 1836-1844. Missouri State Archives Microfilm Reel Number C 5780.
Ray county, Probate Court. Letters of Admministration, 1836-1884. Missouri State Arcives microfilm.
Ray county, Probate Court. Inventories/appraise/sale Bill, Vol B, 1853-1863. Missouri State Archives microfilm.
Ray county, Probate Court. Inventories,Appraisements & Sale Bills, Vol D-FI, 1859-1886. Missouri State Archives microfilm
Ray county, Probate Court. Notices & Affidavits, Vol A, 1862-1877. Missouri State Archives microfilm.
Ray county, Probate Court. Minutes, 1867-1869. Missouri State Archives microfilm.
Ray county, Probate Court. Record of Estates, Vol 1, Allen-Zuklin. Missouri State Archives microfilm.
Ray county, Probate Court. Record of Estates-guardians, Vol 1, Adams-Yates. Missouri State Archives microfilm.
-  ."Ray County Assessor's List for 1821" Ray county, Missouri USGenweb. Which cites as it's source: "Missouri Pioneer Book" Volume 2 February 1968, p. 39-41, compiled and published
by Miss Nadine Hodges & Mrs John Vineyard & Mrs Howard W. Woodruff.
-  "Poll Book of Elections & Voter Registrations" Ray County Genealogical Assoication
- Cowles, Edgar M. Resident taxpayers of Ray County, Mo., comprising the names and occupation of all resident taxpayers in the county, arranged alphabetically, according to post-office addresses. (Hardin? Mo., c1894). See Library of Congress F472.R2 C87.
- Missouri State Archives has microfilmed taxation sources starting in the 1900s.
- 1858-1868 - Ray County Birth Index 1858-1868. Batch C515661 at FamilySearch - free.
- 1883-1890 - Ray County Birth Index 1883-1890. Batch C582498 at FamilySearch - free.
- Missouri, Ray county, County Clerk. Permanant Record of Births, Vol 1, 1883-1889 is available at the Missouri State Archives on microfilm. Reel Number C 25631.
- Missouri, Ray county, County Clerk. Register of Births and Stillbirths, Vol 1, 1883-1890 is available at the Missouri State Archives on microfilm. Reel Number C 5754.
- 1820-1880 - Ray County Marriage Index 1820-1880. Batch M515661 at FamilySearch - free.
- 1880-1885 - Ray County Marriage Index 1880-1885. Batch M515662 at FamilySearch - free.
- "Missouri Marriage Records, 1805-2020" Ancestry.com $ Index and Images. Some years have no entries for Ray County.
- 1883-1890 - Ray County Death Index 1883-1890. Batch B582498 at FamilySearch - free.
- Missouri, Ray county, County Clerk. Permanent Record of Deaths, Vol 1, 1883-1889 is available at the Missouri State Archives on microfilm. Reel Number C 5754.
- Missouri State Archives provides on-line access to Missouri Death Certificates more than 50 yrs old starting in 1910.
Societies and Libraries
Family History Centers
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Ray County, Missouri. Page 405 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Webb, Robert. "Sharing Our Joy in Successfully Locating Books, Church Records, and Other Valuable Original Source Documents, and a Listing of Recent Gifts Received." Primitive Baptist Library website, accessed 16 Dec 2012.
- Fred Woods, "Tarwater Family History / Genealogy - Daviess and Ray co. Missouri" Facebook group (closed) posting dated 29 Jul 2012 and email correspondence to Jana Stokes, July 2012. Wood is author of several Ray county genealogical books including Name Index to the First Twenty Years of Ray County, Missouri, Circuit Court Records, 1820-1840 (Richmond, Missouri : Ray County, Missouri Genealogical Association, 1994).
- Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at https://www.familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/images/f/f4/Igimissourir.pdf.