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San Bernardino County, California

San Bernardino County

San Bernardino County was founded on April 26, 1853 from Los Angeles County . This county was named for the Saint Bernard is the patron saint of mountain passes. The name Bernardino means “bold as a bear.” The Spanish gave the name San Bernardino to the snowcapped peak in southern California, in honor of the saint; from him the county derived its name. .

The San Bernardino County Seat is located in  San Bernardino also, the county government website is

Areas bordering to San Bernardino County are Inyo County (north), Clark County, Nevada (northeast), Mohave County, Arizona (east), La Paz County, Arizona (southeast), Riverside County (south), Orange County (southwest), Los Angeles County (west), Kern County (west) .

Cities and towns located in San Bernardino County include Adelanto, Apple Valley, Barstow, Big Bear Lake, Chino, Chino Hills, Colton, Fontana, Grand Terrace, Hesperia, Highland, Loma Linda, Montclair, Needles, Ontario, Rancho Cucamonga, Redlands, Rialto, San Bernardino, Twentynine Palms, Upland, Victorville, Yucaipa, Yucca Valley .

Other Communities in San Bernardino County include Amboy, Angelus Oaks, Baker, Blue Jay, Cadiz, Calico, Cima, Daggett, Devore, Essex, Fort Irwin, Goffs, Green Valley Lake, Halloran Springs, Helendale, Hinkley, Kelso, Landers, Lucerne Valley, Lytle Creek, Nipton, Phelan, Pinon Hills, Pioneertown, Rice, Sugarloaf, Sunfair, Sunfair Heights, Trona, Vidal, Yermo, Zzyzx. CDPs ( census-designated place) include Big Bear City, Big River, Bloomington, Bluewater, Crestline, Joshua Tree, Lake Arrowhead, Lenwood, Mentone, Morongo Valley, Mountain View Acres, Muscoy, Nebo Center, Running Springs, San Antonio Heights, Searles Valley, Twentynine Palms Base, Wrightwood. .

Since its creation San Bernardino County boundries have changed to include these:

  1. Most of San Bernardino County territory had been in San Diego County from 1850 to 1851 and then in Los Angeles County from 1851 to 1853 when it was moved to the new county.
  2. A smaller territory was in Mariposa County from 1850 to 1851, then in Los Angeles County from 1851 to 1853 when it was moved to San Bernardino County.
  3. A third territory had been in Los Angeles County from 1850 to 1853 when it was moved to the new county.
  4. Territory in Mariposa County from 1850 to 1851, was in Los Angeles County from 1851 to 1878*, when it was added to San Bernardino County.
  5. Territory in Los Angeles County from 1850 to 1878* was added to San Bernardino County.
  6. Territory which at one time was in San Bernardino County is now in Inyo County and Riverside County

San Bernardino 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 San Bernardino 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.

San Bernardino County consists of Federal Census Schedules to guide in looking into your family tree. Federal Population Schedules can be found for 1860, 1870, 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.

San Bernardino Co. Mortality Schedules can be found for 1860, 1870 and 1880. San Bernardino Co. Industry and Agriculture can be obtained for 1860, 1870 and 1880. San Bernardino Co. Union Veterans Schedules is available for 1890. One can find free online and printable census forms to help you with your research.

San Bernardino County Societies and Family History Resources

A list of San Bernardino County Historical  and Genealogical Societies, Forums, Message Boards, Libraries, Archives.

San Bernardino County Courthouse and Government Records

SanBernardino County Courthouse

Researchers often overlook the advantages of San Bernardino 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 San Bernardino 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 supervisors approved a $40,000 tax to construct a new Hall of Records in the late 1880s, south county residents voted to separate from San Bernardino and formed Riverside County in 1893. Undeterred, San Bernardino supervisors approved another tax to finance the construction of this Romanesque Revival building, which was demolished in 1928 after the construction of the current courthouse. The clock in this photo was removed and stored for more than 40 years until it was reinstalled in a new tower a half block from the site of the old courthouse.

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 San Bernardino County. The years indicated below are considered the first widely known records for this county. Land was added from Los Angeles County in 1878.

Remember to get in touch with the clerk's dept to verify hours, mailing address, fees and other specifics prior to visiting or seeking information because of in some cases changing contact details. The Department Offices DO NOT DO RESEARCH. The data files are readily available to interested parties, barring private issues. A good number of employees will assist persons in obtaining the materials, but it's up to the person to do the research.
  • San Bernardino County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
  • San Bernardino County Recorder-Clerk is s responsible for examination and recording of all documents presented for recording that deal with establishing ownership of land in the County or as required by statute; administers the real property transfer tax law and maintains a permanent record and indexes of all documents for public viewing plus providing certified copies requested by the public; recording of all lawful documents such as deeds, deeds of trust, judgments, liens, affidavits, Uniform Commercial Code Financial Statements, etc; and the filing of Births, Deaths, and Marriages.
    • Address: 222 West Hospitality Lane, First Floor, San Bernardino, CA 92415-0022
    • Phone: 855-REC-CLRK
    • Birth / Death Records: 1854 / 1873
    • Marriage Records: 1854
    • Land Records: 1854
  • San Bernardino County Clerk of Superior Court has probate books and files from the county's superior court, civil court records, and naturalizations. Divorces may be here or in the Recorders Office, depending on how it was filed.
    • Probate Records: 1856 
    • Court Records: 1853 
  • San Bernardino County County Treasurer / Tax Collector
  • Local Registrar of Births and Deaths, 340 North Mountain View Avenue, San Bernardino, CA 92415-0038; Office (909) 387-4247

San Bernardino County Links

The following are web links to Genealogy, Records and Resources relevant to San Bernardino 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 San Bernardino County genealogy or family history associated sites.

San Bernardino Co. CA Books, Newspapers & Publications

San Bernardino Co. CA Birth, Marriage & Death Records

San Bernardino Co. CA Court, Probate Land and Tax Records

San Bernardino Co. CA Census Records

San Bernardino Co. CA Cemeteries & Graveyards

San Bernardino Co. CA Church & Bible Records

San Bernardino Co. CA Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

San Bernardino Co. CA General and History Websites

San Bernardino Co. CA Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

San Bernardino Co. CA Military Records

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