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El Dorado County was founded on February 18, 1850 as one of the original 27 counties . This county was named for the meaning “the gilded one” in Spanish, appears at the beginning of the 16th century as that of a mythical Indian chief who was said to have been covered with gold dust during the performance of religious rites. When the discovery of gold by James W. Marshall at Coloma in January 1848 became known to the world, California, and particularly that section where gold was discovered, was called “El Dorado.” From this fact the county received its name .
Other Communities in El Dorado County include Cameron Park, Diamond Springs, El Dorado Hills, Georgetown, Pollock Pines, Shingle Springs, Camino, Coloma, Cool, El Dorado .
Since its creation El Dorado County boundries have changed to include these:
El Dorado County vital records can be found at the California Office of Vital Records has copies of birth, marriage, divorce and death records. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in California for current fees and application process.
You can search online for El Dorado County Birth, Marriage, Divorce or Death Records. You can also Order Electronically Online or can download an application for California Birth Certificate, Marriage or Divorce Certificate, Death Certificate Applications to mail.
El Dorado County consists of Federal Census Schedules to guide in looking into your family tree. Federal Population Schedules can be found for 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.
El Dorado Co. Mortality Schedules can be found for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. El Dorado Co. Industry and Agriculture can be obtained for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. El Dorado Co. Union Veterans Schedules is available for 1890. One can find free online and printable census forms to help you with your research.
A list of El Dorado County Historical and Genealogical Societies, Forums, Message Boards, Libraries, Archives.
Researchers often overlook the advantages of El Dorado County court, probate, and land files as a useful resource of genealogical details. Hidden away in California courthouses and archives everywhere tend to be the dreams and frustrations of the many California inhabitants.
The possibilities are great that your potential forefathers have left a detailed document of at least a number of facets of their lives in the El Dorado County court records. Even if your ancestors is not mentioned in a Court case, contemplate all of the other methods that could have lead to her or him showing up in court records.
Courthouse History - After several unsuccessful electoral efforts to move the county seat from Coloma to their town, citizens of Placerville in 1857 successfully lobbied the state Legislature to order the move. This two-story building was constructed in Placerville, which prior to 1853 was known as Hangtown because of its reputation for lynchings. The building and its additions burned in 1910, and a new concrete-and-steel courthouse was built on the site.
Some counties encompass land settled in the eighteenth century; their records pre-date county formation. Land transactions and vital records recorded in the county are at the county recorder's office. The county clerk general has probate books and files from the county's superior court, civil court records, and naturalizations. Divorces may be in either place, depending on how filed.
The following facts indicates whatever marriage, birth, death, land, wills, and court records will be in El Dorado County. The years indicated below are considered the first widely known records for this county. Land from Placer County was added in 1863. A fire in 1910 & 1920 destroyed most courthouse records. For probate records prior to 1951, write County Nuseum, 100 Placerville Drive, Placerville, California 95667; for probate after 1951, write to Judicial Section, 495 Main Street, Placerville, California 95667.
The following are web links to Genealogy, Records and Resources relevant to El Dorado County. A majority of these genealogy links fall into 3 categories: Business Sites, Private Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some require a payment. This is basically a listing which has been gathered or submitted. I do not recommend or promote one genealogy site above another. Feel free to suggest your own preferred El Dorado County genealogy or family history associated sites.