DeSoto County, Florida

DeSoto County

DeSoto County was created on May 19, 1887 from Manatee County. This county was named for Hernando de Soto (c. 1496/1497–1542), a Spanish explorer and conquistador.

The DeSoto County Seat is located in Arcadia also, the county government website is www.co.desoto.fl.us/.

Areas bordering to DeSoto County are Hardee County (north), Highlands County (east), Glades County (southeast), Charlotte County (south), Sarasota County (west), Manatee County (northwest).

Incorporated Cities and Towns located in DeSoto County include Arcadia.

DeSoto County vital records can be found at the Florida Office of Vital Records which has copies of Birth & Deaths reported 1917 to present and Divorce & Marriages since June 6, 1927. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in Florida for current fees and application process.

You can search online for DeSoto County Birth, Marriage, Divorce or Death Records. You can also Order Electronically Online or can download an application for Florida Birth Certificate, Marriage Certificate, Divorce Certificate, Death Certificate Application to mail.

DeSoto County vital records can be found at the Florida Office of Vital Records which has copies of Birth & Deaths reported 1917 to present and Divorce & Marriages since June 6, 1927. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in Florida for current fees and application process.

You can search online for DeSoto County Birth, Marriage, Divorce or Death Records. You can also Order Electronically Online or can download an application for Florida Birth Certificate, Marriage Certificate, Divorce Certificate, Death Certificate Application to mail.

DeSoto County consists of Federal Census Schedules to guide in looking into your family tree. Federal Population Schedules can be found for 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.

One can find free online and printable census forms to help you with your research.

DeSoto Co. Historical Events (published in 1944):

  • When this county was first formed it was the leading cattle raising county in the State. Its early history is the same as that of the parent county of Manatee.
  • Fort Ogden founded 1861.
  • Arcadia incorporated December 8, 1886.

DeSoto County Societies and Family History Resources

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

DeSoto County Courthouse and Government Records


DeSoto County Courthouse

Researchers often fail to notice the importance of DeSoto County court, probate, and land documents as a source of family history and genealogy information and facts. Hidden away in Florida courthouses and archives everywhere tend to be the desires and worries of the many Florida residents.

The chances are great that your chosen ancestors have left a detailed record of at least a number of factors of their lives in the DeSoto County court records. Even if your forefathers is not referred to in a Court case, take into consideration all of the other methods which could have lead to her or him to appear in court records.

The following indicates what vital, land, probate, and court records are in DeSoto county. The date listed for each category of record is usually the earliest registration filed. The earliest date does not indicate that there are numerous records for that year and does not mean that all such events were actually registered.

Make sure you call the clerk's department to confirm hours, mailing address, fees and other details before visiting or inquiring about information because of in some cases changing contact details. The Department Offices DO NOT DO RESEARCH. The records are available to interested parties, barring confidential issues. A lot of employees will assist individuals in obtaining the materials, but it is up to the person to undertake the researching.
  • DeSoto County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
    • Address: 115 East Oak Street, Arcadia, FL 34266-2401
  • DeSoto County Clerk of the Circuit Court / County Clerk is custodian of all records of all predecessor courts, whether justice of the peace, city, county, probate, civil, or criminal.
    • Phone: (863) 993-4876
    • Marriage Records: 1887
    • Land Records: 1887
    • Probate Records: 1887 
    • Court Records: 1887
  • DeSoto County Tax Collector collects all real estate taxes including postponed and delinquent, all county revenues in addition to the research and issue tax deed applications. Our department is the holder of tax records and assessed values.
  • DeSoto County Health Department has copies of Birth & Death certificates. Also has computer access from 1917 to present for birth records for the entire state as well as births that occurred in this county.

DeSoto County Links

The following are links to Family history and genealogy, Records and Resources relevant to DeSoto County. A lot of these genealogy links fall into 3 categories: Business oriented Sites, Private Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some require a fee. This is just a directory which has been collected or submitted. I do not endorse or promote one genealogy site over another. Feel free to submit your own preferred DeSoto County genealogy or family history affiliated sites.

DeSoto Co. FL Books, Newspapers & Publications

DeSoto Co. FL Birth, Marriage & Death Records

DeSoto Co. FL Court, Probate Land and Tax Records

DeSoto Co. FL Census Records

DeSoto Co. FL Cemeteries & Graveyards

DeSoto Co. FL Church & Bible Records

DeSoto Co. FL Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

DeSoto Co. FL General and History Websites

DeSoto Co. FL Immigration & Naturalization

DeSoto Co. FL Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

DeSoto Co. FL Military Records

DeSoto Co. FL Schools & Directories

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