Santa Clara County, California Genealogy
|Santa Clara County, California|
Location in the state of California
Location of California in the U.S.
|Founded||February 18, 1850|
|County Seat||San Joes|
|Address|| Santa Clara County Courthouse|
70 W Hedding St 1st Floor
San Jose, CA 95110-1768
Santa Clara County Website
- 1 County Information
- 2 County Courthouse
- 3 Historical Facts
- 4 Places/Localities
- 5 Resources
- 5.1 Bible Records
- 5.2 Biography
- 5.3 Cemeteries
- 5.4 Census
- 5.5 Church History and Records
- 5.6 Court Records
- 5.7 Crime and Criminals
- 5.8 Directories
- 5.9 Ethnic, Political, or Religious Groups
- 5.10 Gazetteers
- 5.11 Genealogy
- 5.12 History
- 5.13 Land and Property
- 5.14 Maps
- 5.15 Migration
- 5.16 Military History and Records
- 5.17 Naturalization and Citizenship
- 5.18 Newspapers
- 5.19 Obituaries
- 5.20 Periodicals
- 5.21 Probate Records
- 5.22 Repositories
- 5.23 Societies
- 5.24 Taxation
- 5.25 Vital Records
- 5.26 Voting Registers
- 6 Genealogy Societies, Archives and Libraries
- 7 Websites
- 8 References
Santa Clara County, California Record Dates
Santa Clara County Courthouse
70 W Hedding St 1st Floor
San Jose, CA 95110-1768
County Recorder has birth and death records from 1873
Recorder has birth and death records from 1873,
marriage records from 1850, land records from 1846
and military records from1920 County Clerk has divorce,
probate and naturalization records
18 February 1850: Santa Clara County was created as an original county. County seat: San Jose 
For animated maps illustrating California county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation California County Boundary Maps" (1850-1925) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.
May 18, 1931: A fire quickly spread through the courthouse, causing extensive damage.
- Index to Santa Clara County Biographies (Genealogy Trails)
- Index to Santa Clara County Biographies (USGenWeb Archives)
- Index to Santa Clara County Published Biographies (CAGenWeb Project)
The following web sites may have additional information on Santa Clara County cemeteries.
- Interment.net California cemetery records by County.
For tips on accessing Santa Clara County, California Genealogy census records online, see: California Census.
- 1870 - Index to Santa Clara County Census Records by Township (USGenWeb Archives)
Church History and Records
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 California denominations, view the California Church Records wiki page.
LDS Ward and Branch Records: Gilroy, Los Gatos, Naglee (San Jose), Palo Alto, San Jose and Willow Glen (San Jose).
Crime and Criminals
Ethnic, Political, or Religious Groups
Local histories are available for Santa Clara County, California 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 California Local Histories.
- Index to Santa Clara County History Records (USGenWeb Archives)
Land and Property
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 California Land and Property for additional information about early California land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse and where records are currently housed.
- Santa Clara County Land Grants (CAGenWeb Project)
Military History and Records
Regiments. Service men in Santa Clara County, California Genealogy 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 Santa Clara County, California Genealogy:
- - 1st Battalion, California Native Cavalry (Union), Company A
- - 1st Regiment, California Infantry (Union), Company D
- - 1st Regiment, California Cavalry (Union), New Company E
- - 8th Regiment, California Infantry (Union), Company C
- 1883 - Santa Clara County, California - List of Pensioners on the Roll, January 1, 1883 (Genealogy Trails)
- 1884, 1886 - Civil War Veterans Rosters, G.A.R. Post Records (USGenWeb Archives)
- Wisconsin Civil War Soldiers Buried in San Jose, California (Genealogy Trails)
World War II
- Index of World War II Army Enlistees, Santa Clara County, California (USGenWeb Archives)
Naturalization and Citizenship
Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Santa Clara County, California Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:
- Index to Santa Clara County Obituaries (Genealogy Trails)
- Index to Santa Clara County Obituaries (USGenWeb Archives)
The county clerk is usually the custodian of probate records. The records include wills, fee books, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, probate ticklers, and dockets.
Content: Probate Records may give the decedent's date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, neighbors, associates, relatives, and their place of residence.
You can obtain copies of the original probate records (such as wills and estate files) by writing to the county clerk at the county courthouse.
The FamilySearch Catalog lists films of probate records. To find the records for this county, use the Place Search for California - Santa Clara - Probate records.
Online Probate Records
- 1782 – 1999 California Wills and Probate Records 1782-1999 at Ancestry.com — index and images $
- 1833 – 1991 California Probate Estate Files 1833-1991 at FamilySearch — images
Archives, Libraries and Museums
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.
- Introduction to LDS Family History Centers
- Los Altos California Family History Center
- Milpitas California Family History Center (San Jose)
- San Jose California Family History Center
- Santa Clara California Family History Center
California tax records complement land records and can supplement the years between censuses. There may be gaps of several years in the tax records of some counties. For more information, see the wiki page California Taxation.
Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents. See the CDC Where to Write website for information on acquiring copies of these records. The State office has records since July 1905. For earlier records, contact the County Recorder. See also How to order California Vital Records
The website for the Office of the Clerk-Recorder for Santa Clara County has information about how to request birth records. They have births after 1873.
- 1812 - 1988 - California Births and Christenings, 1812-1988 at FamilySearch — index
- 1905 - 1995 - California Birth Index, 1905-1995 at FamilySearch — index
The website for the Office of the Clerk-Recorder for Santa Clara County has information about how to request marriage records. They have marriages after 1851.
- 1850 - 1945 - California Marriages, 1850-1945 at FamilySearch — index
- 1850 - 1952 - California, County Marriages, 1850-1952 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1854 - 1885 - Western States Marriage Index.
- 1960 - 1985 - California Marriage Index, 1960-1985 at FamilySearch — index and images
- Santa Clara County Marriage Notices by year (Genealogy Trails)
The website for the Office of the Clerk-Recorder for Santa Clara County has information about how to request death records. They have deaths after 1873.
- 1905 - 1939 - California Death Index, 1905-1939 at FamilySearch — index
- 1940 - 1997 - California Death Index, 1940-1997 at FamilySearch — index
Genealogy Societies, Archives and Libraries
Dalton Genealogical Society
880 Ames Court
Palo Alto, CA 94303
Gilroy Historical Society
PO Box 2190
Gilroy, CA 95021
Los Altos Hills Historical Society
27200 Elena Road
Los Altos, CA 94022
Morgan Hill Historical Society
PO Box 1258
Morgan Hill, CA 95037
Palo Alto Historical Association
PO Box 193
Palo Alto, CA 94302
Saratoga Historical Foundation
PO Box 172
Saratoga, CA 95070
Stanford Historical Society
PO Box 2328
Stanford, CA 94309-2328
Santa Clara County Historical And Genealogical Society
2635 Homestead Road
Santa Clara 95051
California Pioneers of Santa Clara County
PO Box 8208
San Jose, CA 95155
Cupertino Historical Society and Museum
10185 N. Stelling Road
Cupertino, CA 95014
- Santa Clara County, CA History, Records, Facts and Genealogy
- California Genealogy Network Community on Google+
- California Genealogy Network Group on Facebook
- Santa Clara County CAGenWeb
- USGenWeb Archives
- FamilySearch Catalog
- Santa Clara County, California Genealogy Trails
- Santa Clara County CA Genealogy (LDS Genealogy)
- Alice Eichholz, Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, Revised ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1992), 62-75. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27rb 1992
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Santa Clara County, California. Page 87At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Genealogy Trails History Group, “Santa Clara County, California Genealogy and History”, http://genealogytrails.com/cal/sclara/#.WRDWYuUrKM8 05/08/2017.
- Wikipedia contributors, "Santa Clara County," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santa_Clara_County,_California 05/08/2017.