Clay County, Minnesota Genealogy
Guide to Clay County, Minnesota ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.
|Clay County, Minnesota|
Location in the state of Minnesota, United States Genealogy
Location of Minnesota in the U.S.
|Founded||March 18, 1858|
|Address||Clay County Courthouse|
807 11th Street North
Moorhead, MN 56560
Phone: 218-299-5002 (Administration)
Clay County Website
- 1 County Information
- 2 County Courthouse
- 3 History
- 4 Places/Localities
- 5 Resources
- 5.1 Cemeteries
- 5.2 Census
- 5.3 Church
- 5.4 Court
- 5.5 Emigration and Immigration
- 5.6 Land
- 5.7 Local Histories
- 5.8 Maps
- 5.9 Military
- 5.10 Naturalization and Citizenship
- 5.11 Newspapers
- 5.12 Obituaries
- 5.13 Probate
- 5.14 Schools
- 5.15 Taxation
- 5.16 Vital Records
- 6 Societies and Libraries
- 7 Websites
- 8 References
County Information[edit | edit source]
Description[edit | edit source]
The County was named for the American statesman Henry Clay, member of the United States Senate from Kentucky and United States Secretary of State in the 19th century. The County is located in the west-central area of the state. 
Clay County, Minnesota Record Dates[edit | edit source]
County Courthouse[edit | edit source]
County Recorder has:
- Birth, marriage, death and land records from 1872
- Military records from 1917
Court Administration has:
- Divorce and court records from 1931
- Probate records from 1885 
History[edit | edit source]
Parent County[edit | edit source]
1858--Clay County was created 18 March 1858 from Pembina (Old) County.
County seat: Moorhead 
Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]
For animated maps illustrating Minnesota County boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Minnesota County Boundary Maps" (1849-1960) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.
Record Loss[edit | edit source]
There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.
Places/Localities[edit | edit source]
Populated Places[edit | edit source]
For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit HomeTown Locator. The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county:
Neighboring Counties[edit | edit source]
Resources[edit | edit source]
Cemeteries[edit | edit source]
|Tombstone Transcriptions Online||Tombstone Transcriptions in Print||List of Cemeteries in the county|
|Findagrave.com||Family History Library||Findagrave.com|
|MNGenWeb Archives||FamilySearch Places|
|See Minnesota Cemeteries for more information.|
Census[edit | edit source]
- 1865 - Minnesota State Census, 1865 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1885 - Minnesota State Census, 1885 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1905 - Minnesota State Census, 1905 at FamilySearch — index and images
Church[edit | edit source]
Most church records are held by individual churches. Some denominations are gathering their records into a central repository. For more information, see Minnesota Church Records.
Lutheran[edit | edit source]
List of Churches and Church Parishes
Court[edit | edit source]
Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]
Land[edit | edit source]
The county register of deeds keeps land records once the land was transferred to private ownership. Abstracts and indexes for these records are generally available at the county courthouse.
Land records for Minnesota are listed in the Place Search of the FamilySearch Catalog under:
MINNESOTA, Clay – LAND AND PROPERTY
- 1872-1947 Minnesota, Clay County Land and Property Records, 1872-1947 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection - browse images
Local Histories[edit | edit source]
Local histories are available for Clay County, Minnesota 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 Minnesota Local Histories.
- Biographies of Clay and Norman County, Minnesota 1918 Online biographical sketches of Clay and Norman county residents taken from the book A History of Clay and Norman Counties, Minnesota Vol. 2, pub. by B. F. Bowen and Co.
Maps[edit | edit source]
Military[edit | edit source]
World War II[edit | edit source]
- 1940-1945 - Minnesota, World War II Draft Registration Cards,1940-1947 at FamilySearch — index and images
Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]
- 1872-1962 - Minnesota Naturalization Records and Indexes, 1872-1962 at FamilySearch — index
Newspapers[edit | edit source]
Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Clay County, Minnesota Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:
Obituaries[edit | edit source]
- 1865-2006 - Minnesota, Clay and Steele County Obituaries, 1865-2006 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1865-2006 - Minnesota Obituaries 1865-2006 at FamilySearch— index and images
Probate[edit | edit source]
Probate records may include, wills, bonds, petitions, accounts, inventories, administrations, orders, decrees, and distributions. They may include the decedent’s date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, etc. See Minnesota Probate Records for additional information. Online Probate Records
Schools[edit | edit source]
- 1909 - 1962 Minnesota, Clay County, School Census Records, 1909-1962 at FamilySearch — index and images
Taxation[edit | edit source]
Since Minnesota tax records include only persons who owned taxable property, many residents were not included. Still they complement land records and can be used in place of missing censuses or the years between censuses. There may also be gaps. For more information, see the wiki page Minnesota Taxation.
Vital Records[edit | edit source]
A copy or an extract of most original records can be purchased from the Minnesota State Registrar of Vital Records, or the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred. See also Minnesota Vital Records.
Birth[edit | edit source]
- 1900-1934 Minnesota, Birth Index, 1900-1934 at MyHeritage($) — index
Marriage[edit | edit source]
- 1850-2019 WEB: Minnesota, Marriages from the Minnesota Official Marriage System, 1850-2019 at Ancestry($) — index
- 1860 - 1949 Minnesota, County Marriages, 1860-1949 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1976-2003 Minnesota, Marriages, 1976-2003 at MyHeritage($) — index
Death[edit | edit source]
- 1850-2001 - Minnesota, County Deaths, 1850-2001 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1887-2001 - Minnesota Deaths, 1887-2001 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1904-2001 Minnesota, Death Index, 1904-2001 at MyHeritage($) — index
Societies and Libraries[edit | edit source]
- Historical and Cultural Society of Clay County
The Hjemkomst Center
202 First Avenue North
Moorhead, MN 56560
- Barnesville Heritage Society
PO Box 126
412 6 St NE
Barnesville, MN 56514
- Ulen Historical Museum
PO Box 182
Ulen MN 56585
Phone: 218 596-8121
- Red River Valley Genealogical Society
PO Box 9284
112 N University Drive, Suite L116
Fargo, ND 58106
Northwest Minnesota Historical Center Minnesota State University 1104 7th Avenue South Moorhead, MN 56563 Phone: 800-593-7246
Family History Centers[edit | edit source]
Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance, free access to center-only databases, and to premium genealogical websites.
FamilySearch Affiliate Libraries have access to most center-only databases, but may not always have full services normally provided by a family history center.
Local Centers and Libraries
Websites[edit | edit source]
- Minnesota Genealogy Network Group on Facebook
- FamilySearch Catalog
- Clay County GenWeb
- Cyndi's List: Clay County
References[edit | edit source]
- Wikipedia contributors, "Clay County, Minnesota" in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clay_County,_Minnesota accessed 8 Nov 2018
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Clay County, Minnesota. Page 362-370 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002; Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Third ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 2004), 362-365.
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Clay County, Minnesota page 363, At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- "Henry Clay," Wikipedia.
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Wikipedia contributors, "Clay County, Minnesota," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clay_County,_Minnesota, accessed 23 January 2020.