Rio Virgin County, Utah Genealogy

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United States Gotoarrow.png Utah Gotoarrow.png Rio Virgin County

Rio Virgin County (or Rio Virgen) was a former county of Utah from 1869 to 1872. It was created by Utah Territory, but only a small bit of Rio Virgin county was actually in Utah. It mostly covered land outside of Utah in Nevada and Arizona, which also lay claim.[1] [2]

  • 18 January 1867 - The US federal government moved the western boundary of Utah Territory east and gave that land to Nevada.[3] Utah opposed this loss of land.
  • 18 February 1869 - Utah created Rio Virgin County.[4] Rio Virgin County was meant to serve the residents of Mesquite, St. Thomas, Bunkerville and other nearby towns which Utah wanted to keep within its influence. The US federal government surveyed the land, which showed Rio Virgin County was mostly in Lincoln County, Nevada, with some in Pah-Ute County, Arizona and a small part in Utah.[5]
  • 16 February 1872 - Utah discontinued Rio Virgin County, finally accepting the change after exhausting all legal remedies.[6] [2] The tiny bit of this county actually in Utah was restored to Washington County.[7]

Records for Rio Virgin County, Utah Territory may be found in Washington County, Utah Some records may also be found in Mohave County, Arizona (holding records of discontinued Pah-Ute County, Arizona). Also check in Lincoln County, Nevada

For records of Rio Virgin County see also:

  • Utah State Archives may have a few records from the Utah Territory's Rio Virgin County courts and deeds.

Death Record Substitutes

  • 1870 - U.S. Federal Census Mortality Schedules, 1850-1885 at Ancestry ($). Includes 1870 Rio Virgin County, Utah Genealogy mortality schedule.


  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), 687. At various libraries (WorldCat). FHL Book 973 D274 2002.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Chart of County Formation in Utah" in Division of Archives and Records Service at (accessed 11 August 2011).
  3. U.S. Stat., vol. 14, ch. 73[1866]/p. 43; Sacks, 25; Van Zandt, p. 158, 165
  4. Utah Terr. Laws 1869, 18th session, ch. 10, p. 7
  5. Deon C. Greer, Atlas of Utah (Ogden, Utah: Utah State College, 1981), 162 and 164. At various libraries (WorldCat). FHL Q Book 979.2 E7a.
  6. Utah Terr. Laws 1872, 20th session, ch. 19, sec. 2, p. 28
  7. Greer, 162