Union County, Tennessee Genealogy
Union County, Tennessee ancestry, family history, and genealogy research page. Guide to Union County (established 1850) genealogy, history, and courthouse sources including birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, wills, deeds and land records, Civil War records, Revolutionary War records, family histories, cemeteries, churches, tax records, newspapers, and obituaries.
|Union County, Tennessee|
Location in the state of Tennessee
Location of Tennessee in the U.S.
|Founded:||January 3, 1850|
- 1 Quick Dates
- 2 County Courthouse
- 3 History
- 4 Places/Localities
- 5 Resources
- 5.1 Getting Started
- 5.2 Research Guides
- 5.3 African American
- 5.4 Cemeteries
- 5.5 Census
- 5.6 Church
- 5.7 Court
- 5.8 Family Histories
- 5.9 Land
- 5.10 Local Histories
- 5.11 Maps
- 5.12 Military
- 5.13 Newspapers
- 5.14 Occupations
- 5.15 Periodicals
- 5.16 Prisons
- 5.17 Probate Records
- 5.18 Taxation
- 5.19 Vital Records
- 6 Societies and Libraries
- 7 Union County Tennessee Genealogy Websites
- 8 Union County Tennessee Genealogy References
Union County's civil records start the following years:
Union County Courthouse
901 Main Street P O Box 395
Maynardville, TN 37807
County Clerk has birth records from 1863, marriage and probate records.
County Assessor has land records. 
Union County Clerk
Birth records from 1864
Marriage and probate records
901 Main St.
Maynardville, TN 37807
Union County Register of Deeds
901 Main St., Suite 108
Maynardville, TN 37807
Union County Circuit Court Clerk
901 Main St., Suite 220
Maynardville, TN 37807
Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
Sat. 9 a.m.-noon
East Tennessee county.
The origin of the county name is not entirely clear. Some believe it symbolized the unification of several East Tennessee counties at it's formation. Others point out Tennessee's desire to preserve the Union.
For animated maps illustrating Tennessee county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Tennessee County Boundary Maps" (1777-1985) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.
1870s and 1969 Fires damaged the courthouse records.
- Lost marriage records: 1854 to 1864
- Lost probate records: 1854 to 1858
For suggestions about research in places that suffered historic record losses, see:
- Burned Counties Research in the FamilySearch Research Wiki.
- Arlene Eakle, When the Records are Gone in the Tennessee Genealogy Blog.
- Michael John Neill, Burned Counties in Family History Circle.
|Ailor (hist.)||Hurricane Branch (hist.)||New Loyston||Rose Hill|
|Alder Springs||Irwin||New Prospect (hist.)||Rule (hist.)|
|Chesney||Lickskillet||Oak Grove||Sharps Chapel|
|Chestnut Grove||Little Barren||Paulette||Sill (hist.)|
|Condon||Long Hollow (hist.)||Pennington Chapel||Speedwell|
|Duke (hist.)||Loo (hist.)||Phebe (hist.)||Stiner Store (hist.)|
|Gabe (hist.)||Loyston (hist.)||Raccoon Valley||Welch Crossroad|
|Haversons (hist.)||Luttrell||Ray (hist.)||White Hollow|
|Haynes (hist.)||Maynardville||Rhodelin (hist.)||Woodburn (hist.)|
|Hinds Creek Valley||Mossy Spring||Ridenour|
Use the free Search for Surnames at Mountain Press's website to quickly search a variety of published Union County biography and cemetery 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.
- Genealogical "Fact Sheets" About Tennessee Counties: Union County, courtesy: TSLA. (Identifies published county histories, published local records, census records, newspapers and local records on microfilm, and select manuscripts.)
|Tombstone Transcriptions Online||Tombstone Transcriptions in Print||List of Cemeteries in the county|
|Findagrave.com||Family History Library||Findagrave.com|
|See Tennessee Cemeteries for more information.|
Additional Cemetery Resources
- Tennessee Cemeteries - Hometown Locator
|Source: "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau.|
See Tennessee Population Schedule Indexes: Fiche, Film, or Book for more information about statewide printed indexes.
- Collins, Sonja and Evelyn Holloway. Transcription, Federal Census Schedule, Union County, Tennessee, 1860, Indexed: First Census of Union County. [Corryton, Tenn.]: S. Collins and E. Holloway, 1983. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2c 1860.
- Collins, Sonja and Evelyn Holloway. Transcription, Federal Census Schedule, Union County, Tennessee, 1870, Indexed. Corryton, Tenn.: S. Collins and E. Holloway, 1983. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2c 1870.
- Collins, Sonja and Evelyn Holloway. Transcription, Federal Census Schedule, Union County, Tennessee, 1880, Indexed. Corryton, Tenn.: S. Collins and E. Holloway, 1984. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2c 1880.
- Sistler, Byron and Barbara Sistler. 1880 Census Union County, Tennessee. Nashville, Tenn.: B. Sistler & Associates, 1996. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2s 1880.
- Collins, Sonja and Evelyn Holloway. Transcription, Federal Census Schedule, Union County, Tennessee, 1900, Indexed. Corryton, Tenn.: E. Holloway and S. Collins, 1985. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2c 1900.
- Collins, Sonja. Transcription, Federal Census Schedule, Union County, Tennessee, 1910, Indexed. Corryton, Tenn.: S. Collins, 1985. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2c 1910.
- Carter, Martha Jean Atkins. Union County, Tennessee, 1920 Federal Census. Knoxville, Tenn.: M.J.A. Carter, 1997?. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X2cm 1920.
- Carter, Martha Jean Atkins. 1930 Union County, Tennessee, Federal Census. Knoxville, Tenn.: M.J.A. Carter, 2002. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 X29c 1930.
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)
- Wilson, Marshall A. Families of Norris Reservoir Area. Clinton, Tennessee: Pellissippi Genealogical and Historical Society, 1986. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 D2w.
- Norris Dam on the Clinch River in Eastern Tennessee was a project of the Tennessee Valley Authority in the 1930s. Nearly 3,000 families, totalling almost 14,000 persons, were required to vacate land that was to be inundated by the resulting reservoir. In connection with the removal of families and gravesites, Mr. Wilson, a TVA official, collected historical and genealogical information about Norris Valley residents; he presents information about 75 of those families, along with a brief chronology of the area. Each family record begins with the name of a father and the name of that man's father, con- tinuing through other ancestors of the direct male line back to the earliest one known. Families represented by ten or more male heads of household include Agee, Carden, Hatmaker, Irwin, Longmire, Miller, Rice, and Sharp.
- Baker - Nelson, Elmer R. The history and descendants of (William) Martin Baker and his wife Sarah M. Cook Chatsworth, California:E.R. Nelson, 1999.FHL book 929.273 B171. Digital version available at Family History Archives.
- Cox - Cox, Idris Jacob and Dorisha Jane Cox Chargualaf. Our Cox Family History. Knoxville, Tenn.: I.J. Cox, 1999. FHL Book 929.273 C839ci.
- Hickle - Hubbs, Ferol Frost. Hubbs - Frost and Allied Families. 1958. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 H862hf.
- Monroe - Peters, Sam C. and Bonnie Heiskell Peters. Mark Monroe: An East Tennessee Pioneer and His Corn Crib. Knoxville, Tenn.: Union County Books, 2004. FHL 921.73 M757p
- Ridenour - Ridenour, James. The Ridenour Families of Union County, Tennessee, 1850-1930. Maynardville, Tenn.: Union County Historical Society (Tennessee), 2004?. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 D2r.
The original Union County Deed Books are kept at the County Courthouse. In the 1970s, TSLA microfilmed Deed Books A to P (1856-1900) and an accompanying Index (1856-1907). FHL copies: FHL US/CAN Films 976349-976357.
War of 1812
- Embry, Hermione D. "War of 1812 - Tennessee Pensioners on List - January 2, 1883," Ansearchin' News, Vol. 8, No. 3 (Jul. 1961):95-98. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 B2a v. 8 (1961); digital version at journal website. Includes Union County pensioners (pp. 97-98).
- 1861-1865 - Tennessee, Civil War Service Records of Confederate Soldiers, 1861-1865 at FamilySearch — index
- 1861-1865 - Tennessee, Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, 1861-1865 at FamilySearch — index
- 1861-1865 - U.S., Confederate Soldiers Compiled Service Records, 1861-1865 at Ancestry — index (free)
- 1861-1865 - U.S., Union Soldiers Compiled Service Records, 1861-1865 at Ancestry — index (free)
- 1891-1965 - Tennessee, Confederate Pension Applications, Soldiers and Widows, 1891-1965 at FamilySearch — images
- Civil War Research Database $
- Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System
Regiments. Civil War service men from Union 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 Union County:
- 1st Regiment, Tennessee Cavalry (Carter's) - CSA - Company E.
- 2nd Regiment, Tennessee Cavalry (Ashby's) - CSA - Company B and D.
- 4th Battalion, Tennessee Cavalry (Branner's) - CSA - Company C.
- 5th Battalion, Tennessee Cavalry (McClellan's) - CSA - Company C.
- 11th Regiment, Tennessee Cavalry - CSA - Company M.
- 8th Regiment, Tennessee Cavalry - Companies F and G.
- 9th Regiment, Tennessee Cavalry - Company B.
- 11th Regiment, Tennessee Cavalry - Company M.
- 13th Regiment, Tennessee Cavalry - Company L.
Additional sources for Civil War soldiers from Union County:
- Carter, William Randolph. History of the First regiment of Tennessee Volunteer Cavalry in the Great war of the Rebellion, with the Armies of the Ohio and Cumberland, under Generals Morgan, Rosecrans, Thomas, Stanley and Wilson. Knoxville, Tennessee: Gaut-Ogden Co. Printers, 1902. Available online at Internet Archive.
- Tennessee State Library and Archives, Tennessee Confederate Pension Applications: Union County. Includes soldier's name, county, pension #, unit or widow.
- United States Pension Bureau, List of Pensioners on the Roll January 1, 1883: Giving the Name of Each Pensioner, the Cause for... (Washington Printing Office; 1883). Online at Internet Archive. Union County, page 380-381.
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 Union County click on the following city:
- 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 Genealogical.com. Includes Union 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:
- Pathways History and Genealogical Journal
- "A quarterly publication of the Union County Historical Society" organized in 1980.
The Family History Library has most volumes to the present time. FHL US/CAN 976.8935 H25p
Indexed at PERiodical Source Index (PERSI)
Digital copies of Pathways Historical and Genealogical Journal:Union County Historical Society Volumes 18,21,25,26 available at Family History Archives.
- The Pellissippian
- Several genealogical articles with abstracts of Union County, Tennessee Genealogy 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 Book 976.8 D25p.
- Family History Library has volumes 2 and 3 (Feb 2006 - Oct 2007)
For additional information see website: http://www.unioncountytn.com/history/default.htm. Website includes Volume 3, Issue 3 May/June 2007 online.
Learn if your Union County ancestors went to prison!
- Inmates of the Tennessee State Penitentiary 1851-1870, free index available online, courtesy: TSLA.
The original Union County Will Books are kept at the County Courthouse.
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:
- Inventories, Wills, 1875-1911 (Vol. B)
- Claims against estates, 1872-1915
- Settlements, 1856-1902 (6 vols.)
In 1974, TSLA microfilmed:
- Wills and Inventories Book B (1875-1911)
- Administrators' Settlements Books B to D (1859-1899)
- Guardians' Settlements 1856-1902
- Claims against Estates 1872-1915.
FHL copies: FHL Film 976335-976340.
The following Union County tax records have been abstracted and/or indexed:
- 1854 - Tax List, Districts 1-10, 1854, Pathways, Vol. 3, No. 3 (Jul. 1984); Vol. 3, No. 4 (Oct. 1984); Vol. 4, No. 1 (Jan. 1985); Vol. 4, No. 2 (Apr. 1985); Vol. 4, No. 4 (Oct. 1985); Vol. 5, No. 3 (Jul. 1986); Vol. 5, No. 4 (Oct. 1986); Vol. 6, No. 1 (Mar. 1987); Vol. 6, No. 2 (Jun. 1987); Vol. 6, No. 3 (Sep. 1987). For access, see Periodicals.
- 1855 - Tax List, Districts 1-10, 1855, Pathways, Vol. 6, No. 4 (Dec. 1987); Vol. 7, No. 2 (Jun. 1988); Vol. 7, No. 3 (Sep. 1988); Vol. 7, No. 4 (Dec. 1988); Vol. 8, No. 1 (Mar. 1989); Vol. 8, No. 2 (Jun. 1989); Vol. 8, No. 3 (Sep. 1989); Vol. 8, No. 4 (Dec. 1989); Vol. 9, No. 1 (Mar. 1990); Vol. 9, No. 2 (Jun. 1990). For access, see Periodicals.
- 1856 - Tax List, Districts 1-10, 1856, Pathways, Vol. 9, No. 4 (Dec. 1990); Vol. 10, No. 1 (Mar. 1991); Vol. 10, No. 2 (Jun. 1991); Vol. 10, No. 3 (Sep. 1991); Vol. 10, No. 4 (Dec. 1991); Vol. 11, No. 1 (Mar. 1992); Vol. 11, No. 2 (Jun. 1992); Vol. 11, No. 3 (Sep. 1992); Vol. 11, No. 4 (Dec. 1992). For access, see Periodicals.
- 1857 - Tax List, Districts 1-10, 1857, Pathways, Vol. 12, No. 1 (Mar. 1993); Vol. 12, No. 2 (Jun. 1993); Vol. 12, No. 3 (Sep. 1993); Vol. 12, No. 4 (Dec. 1993); Vol. 13, No. 1 (Mar. 1994); Vol. 13, No. 2 (Jun. 1994); Vol. 14, No. 2 (Jun. 1995); Vol. 14, No. 3 (Sep. 1995); Vol. 14, No. 4 (Dec. 1995); Vol. 15, No. 1 (Mar. 1996); Vol. 15, No. 2 (Jun. 1996); Vol. 15, No. 3 (Sep. 1996); Vol. 15, No. 4 (Nov. 1996); Vol. 16, No. 1 (Mar. 1997); Vol. 16, No. 2 (Jun. 1997); Vol. 16, No. 3 (Sep. 1997); Vol. 16, No. 4 (Dec. 1997); Vol. 17, No. 1 (Mar. 1998); Vol. 17, No. 2 (Jun. 1998). For access, see Periodicals.
- 1858 - Tax List, Districts 1-10, 1858, Pathways, Vol. 17, No. 3 (Sep. 1998); Vol. 17, No. 4 (Dec. 1998); Vol. 18, No. 1 (Mar. 1999); Vol. 18, No. 2 (Jun. 1999); Vol. 18, No. 3 (Sep. 1999); Vol. 18, No. 4 (Dec. 1999); Vol. 19, No. 1 (Mar. 2000); Vol. 19, No. 2 (Jun. 2000); Vol. 19, No. 3 (Sep. 2000). For access, see Periodicals.
- 1859 - Tax List, 1859, Pathways, Vol. 19, No. 4 (Dec. 2000); Vol. 23, No. 1 (Mar. 2004); Vol. 23, No. 2 (Sep. 2004). For access, see Periodicals.
- 1860 - Tax List, 1860, Pathways, Vol. 24, No. 1 (Mar. 2005); Vol. 24, No. 2 (Jun. 2005); Vol. 24, No. 4 (Dec. 2005); Vol. 25, No. 2 (Jun. 2006); Vol. 25, No. 3 (Sep. 2006); Vol. 26, No. 1 (Mar. 2007); Vol. 26, No. 2 (Jun. 2007). For access, see Periodicals.
- 1881-1882 - Union County Birth Index 1881-1882 in International Genealogical Index at FamilySearch.org - free. Batch C519774.
The original Union County Marriage Books are kept at the County Courthouse. Antebellum marriage registers no longer survive, but published transcripts include a few alternative marriage sources for the 1850s. The original records have been microfilmed:
- 1790-1950 - Tennessee, County Marriages, 1790-1950 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1838-1888 - Tennessee Civil Marriages, 1838-1888 at FamilySearch — index and images
- Marriage Books 1 to 7 (1864-1969). Microfilmed in 1970s and 1980s by TSLA. FHL copies: FHL US/CAN Films 976341-976342, 1928862-1928863.
Union County's marriage records have been abstracted multiple times. Each editor followed similar abstraction standards:
- 1856-1975 - Collins, Betty VanOver. Union County, Tennessee, Marriages. 2 vols. Knoxville, Tenn.: B.J. Collins, 2000. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 V29cb v. 1 ff. Abstracts names of brides and grooms, ages, marriage dates; includes annotations taken from family Bibles, Civil War records, and other manuscripts.
- 1864-1895 - Union County Marriage Index 1864-1895 in International Genealogical Index at FamilySearch.org - free.
- 1864-1900 - Hickle, Wanda Wilmouth. Tennessee, Union County, Marriage Applications and Licenses, 1864-1900. Luttrell, Tenn.: W.W. Hickle, 1983. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 V2h. Abstracts names of brides, grooms, and officiators, as well as dates of license and marriage; includes annotations taken from additional sources.
- 1901-1916 - Collins, Sonja. Union County, Tennessee, Marriage Applications and Licenses, 1901-1916. Corryton, Tenn.: S. Collins, 1985. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8935 V2cs. Abstracts names of brides, grooms, and officiators, as well as dates of license and marriage.
For deaths of Methodists in Union County between the 1830s and the 1920s, try searching the following records:
- 1847-1914 - Smith, Jonathan K.T. Genealogical Abstracts from Reported Deaths, the Nashville Christian Advocate. [1847-1914] 10 vols. Jackson, Tenn.: J.K.T. Smith, 1997-2003. FHL US/CAN Books 976.855/N1 V48s 1847-1851 ff; digital versions at David Donahue Memorial: Tennessee Records Repository. Website expands upon the publications and includes deaths from the 1830's, 1840's, 1910's and 1920's.
Societies and Libraries
- Union County Historical Society, Inc.
3824 Maynardville, Highway
P.O. Box 95
Maynardville, TN 37807
- East Tennessee Historical Society
601 S. Gay St.
P.O. Box 1629
Knoxville, TN 37901-1629
- Maynardville Public Library
296 Main St.
Maynardville, TN 37807
Hours: Mon. and Fri. 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Tues. and Thurs. 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
- Luttrell Public Library
115 Park Rd
Luttrell, TN 37779
Family History Centers
Union County Tennessee Genealogy Websites
- FamilySearch Catalog (FamilySearch) - The catalog is genealogical materials (including books, online materials, microfilm, microfiche, and publications) This catalog is different than the indexed Historical Records.
- Mailing List: TNUNION-L (Union County, Tennessee List) (RootsWeb)
- Mailing List: ETN-L (East Tennessee List) (RootsWeb)
- Mailing List: ETN-OZ-L (East Tennessee Migrants to Ozarks Region List) (RootsWeb)
- Mailing List: UPPEREASTTN-L (Upper East Tennessee List) (RootsWeb)
- Union County, TN Family History and Genealogy Message Board (Ancestry)
- Union County, TN Genealogy and Family History (Linkpendium)
- Union County, TNGenWeb (USGenWeb)
Union County Tennessee Genealogy References
- "Earliest County Records," Tennessee State Library and Archives.
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Union County, Tennessee page 644, At various libr40ries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- "List of counties in Tennessee," Wikipedia.
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), 644. (FHL Book 973 D27e 2002). WorldCat entry.
- Voice of Lynnae Weller, Kingsport, Tenn. (2010).
- Voice of Gene Black, FamilySearch employee, former resident of Bristol, Tenn. (2010).
- Lost Records: Courthouse Fires and Disasters in Tennessee in Tennessee State Library and Archives in Tennessee Secretary of State (accessed 22 March 2016).
- The Heritage Quest Online version of PERSI aided in the compilation of this list.
- Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at https://www.familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/images/6/64/Igitennessees.pdf.