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Data Collections


Data Collections
Sorted by Kentucky Census & Voter Lists
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U.S. Census Reconstructed Records, 1660-1820171,563
Kentucky, Compiled Census and Census Substitutes Index, 1810-1890122,793
Kentucky, Tax Lists, 1799-1801Free31,416
Smocks in the censuses, 1790-184032
Third census of the United States (1810 census), Clark County, Kentucky26
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Data Collections
Sorted by Kentucky Birth, Marriage & Death
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Kentucky, Birth Index, 1911-19995,859,507
Kentucky, Death Records, 1852-19655,740,496
Kentucky, Death Index, 1911-20003,320,556
Kentucky, County Marriage Records, 1783-19652,961,398
Kentucky, Marriage Index, 1973-19992,342,073
View all Kentucky Birth, Marriage & Death (23)

Data Collections
Sorted by Kentucky Military
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U.S., World War II Draft Registration Cards, 194215,293,445
U.S., Confederate Soldiers Compiled Service Records, 1861-18652,049,383
U.S., Union Soldiers Compiled Service Records, 1861-1865837,569
U.S., Lists of Men Ordered to Report to Local Board for Military Duty, 1917–1918613,480
Kentucky, Compiled Census and Census Substitutes Index, 1810-1890122,793
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Sorted by Kentucky Immigration & Emigration
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Kentucky, Naturalization Records, 1906-199167,206
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Sorted by Kentucky Newspapers & Periodicals
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Calendar of the Kentucky papers of the Draper Collection of Manuscripts629
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Sorted by Kentucky Pictures
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There are no Pictures collections unique to Kentucky
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Sorted by Kentucky Directories & Member Lists
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Kentucky City Directories840
A history of the Baptists in the western states east of the Mississippi421
Forks of Elkhorn Church342
Traditions of the earliest visits of foreigners to North America : the first formed and first inhabited of the continents215
Transylvania University : its origin, rise, decline, and fall202
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Sorted by Kentucky Court, Land, Wills & Financial
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Kentucky, Wills and Probate Records, 1774-1989287,173
U.S. Census Reconstructed Records, 1660-1820171,563
Kentucky, Land Grants, 1782-1924143,859
U.S., Tennessee Valley, Family Removal and Population Readjustment Case Files, 1934-195381,862
Kentucky, Tax Lists, 1799-1801Free31,416
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Data Collections
Sorted by Kentucky Dictionaries, Encyclopedias & Reference
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Kentucky Biographical Dictionary, 1896669
Calendar of the Kentucky papers of the Draper Collection of Manuscripts629
Kentucky : a guide to the Bluegrass State590
Governors of Kentucky, 1792-1942395
Reprints of Littell's Political transactions in and concerning Kentucky313
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Sorted by Kentucky Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers
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There are no Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers collections unique to Kentucky
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Sorted by Kentucky Stories, Memories & Histories
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Kentucky History, 19223,617
A Sesqui-centennial history of Kentucky2,413
Report of the adjutant general of the state of Kentucky2,149
The winning of the West1,736
History of Kentucky1,554
View all Kentucky Stories, Memories & Histories (223)

A Genealogical History

Kentucky in brief

Statehood:  1 June 1792
Capital: Frankfort
Largest City: Louisville, Lexington-Feyette
Counties: 120
State motto: Deo gratiam habeamus (Let Us Be Grateful to God)
State nickname: Bluegrass State
Neighboring states: Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee, West Virginia, Virginia, Missouri


Churchill Downs, Louisville, KY, Derby Day, 1901

Interesting Facts

  • The city of Harrodsburg, founded in 1774 was the first permanent English settlement west of the Allegheny mountains.
  • The Wilderness Road was the primary route through the Cumberland Gap into central Kentucky, blazed by Daniel Boone in 1775. It eventually connected the Potomac in Virginia, with the falls of the Ohio River.  Although it was a narrow hazardous trail, it was used by many settlers making their way into Kentucky and beyond.
  • Kentucky was originally part of Virginia, but there was a lot of dissent as to what Kentucky's fate should be. In 1784 a series of conventions were held with some arguing for the redistribution of land, some wanting to stay with the status quo, and some even wanting to secede from the U.S. and join with Spain. After much deliberation, in 1792 a constitution was drawn up and Kentucky was admitted as the 15th state.
  • During the Civil War, Kentucky was a slaveholding state, but also boasted a large abolitionist population and Kentuckians served in both the Union and Confederate forces. Coincidentally both President Abraham Lincoln and Confederate President Jefferson Davis were born in Kentucky.
     

Featured Kentucky Data Collections

U.S., World War II Draft Registration Cards, 194215,293,445
Kentucky, Death Records, 1852-19655,740,496
U.S., Union Soldiers Compiled Service Records, 1861-1865837,569
U.S., Confederate Soldiers Compiled Service Records, 1861-18652,049,383
U.S., Freedmen's Bureau Records of Field Offices, 1863-187827,526

Famous People

Help and Advice

Resources

Kentucky Census Research

Federal census records for Kentucky are available from 1810, except for the destroyed 1890 census.  Earlier censuses taken in 1790 and 1800 were destroyed, but were been partially reconstructed with the use of tax lists. These reconstructions are available wherever copies of the censuses are also found.

There are no official state censuses for Kentucky, although those living in Kentucky before 1790 were often included with Virginia records. Tax lists for Kentucky are some of the best found in the U.S., and can substitute as a census of mature male inhabitants for almost any early year.

Kentucky infrequently enumerated public school students beginning in 1888. Scattered records are at the office of the respective county Board of Health or Board of Education. Some are maintained by the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives and the Kentucky Historical Society.


 

Kentucky Vital Records

Statewide vital records registration was first enacted in 1852, but compliance was minimal and the legislation was only in place for ten years. Sporadic maintenance was also performed between 1872 and 1910. Mandatory registration of births and deaths was again enacted as of January 1, 1911.

Marriage records have been kept on a county-level basis since the formation of each county, with some records pre-dating official formation. In 1958, marriages registration began at the state level. An every name index to births and deaths after 1911 exists at the Office of Vital Statistics.

  • : Holds records of births and deaths from 1911, and marriages after 1958.
  • : The allows researchers to submit electronic requests for a range of records, including pre-1911 vital records, deeds, military, tax, and probate records. Be sure to check the links which show available years of coverage for each record type.


 

Kentucky Research Resources

The organizations listed below provide information about Kentucky history and genealogy. In addition to these state-level resources, many counties and towns maintain important genealogical collections in local libraries, genealogical societies, or historical societies, so check for a local resource when researching.


 

Statewide Research Resources

  • :  Use the to request vital, military, census, deed, tax, will, or court records held in KDLA’s collection.
  • : Selected collections from the Kentucky Archives include oral histories and a collection of newspapers from across Kentucky.
  • : This facility maintains records from Federal agencies and courts in Kentucky, including census, military, court, naturalization, and immigration records.
  • :  The BLM administers Federal Land for public land states including Kentucky, and maintains records of land patents which granted land from the Federal Government to individuals.  Use the Land Patent Search to locate land grants by name.  Many record images are available on the web site.  See the FAQ for more information on how to locate and use land patents.


 

Specialty and Regional Research

  • : Provides searchable online versions of selected Kentucky newspapers.
  • : see the Collections page for information on the Filson’s genealogy holdings at the Library in Louisville.
  • :  Serves the tri-state area of northeastern Kentucky, southern Ohio, and western West Virginia.  The Society holds regular meetings, sponsors events, and maintains a research library.