Decatur County, Iowa
Genealogy, History & Facts
Decatur County, Iowa Facts
When was Decatur County, IA Created?
Decatur County was established on January 13, 1846 (Organized in March 6, 1850) from Unorganized Territory. The county was named in honor of Stephen Decatur (1779–1820), a naval hero of the War of 1812
What is the County Seat of Decatur County, IA?
The County Seat is located in Leon and the county government website is http://www.decaturcountydevelopment.org/county.htm
What counties are adjacent to Decatur County, IA?
Bordering Counties are Clarke County (north), Wayne County (east), Mercer County, Missouri (southeast), Harrison County, Missouri (southwest), Ringgold County (west).
What cities and towns are in Decatur County, IA?
Cities and towns located in the County include Davis City, Decatur City, Garden Grove, Grand River, Lamoni, Leon, Pleasanton, Van Wert, Weldon.
Decatur County, IA Vital Records
Where can find Decatur County Birth, marriage, Divorce and Death Records?
Decatur County vital records can be found at the Iowa Office of Vital Records which has copies of birth, marriage and death records from July 1880. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in Iowa for current fees and application process.
You can search online for Decatur County Birth, Marriage, Divorce or Death Records. You can also Order Electronically Online or can download an application for Iowa Birth Certificate, Marriage Certificate, Death Certificate Application to mail.
- U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007
- Social Security Death Index
- USGenweb Archives Iowa Marriage Project
- Iowa, Births and Christenings, 1830-1950
- Iowa, Births and Christenings Index, 1857-1947
- Iowa, County Births, 1880-1935
- Iowa State Court System; Divorce Records 1992 to December 2008
- Iowa State Public Record Offices; Marriage Records 1834 – 1900
- Iowa, County Marriages, 1838-1934
- Iowa Marriages to 1850
- Iowa, Marriages, 1851-1900
- Iowa, Marriages, 1809-1992
- Iowa, Deaths and Burials, 1850-1990
Decatur County, IA Census Records
What Decatur County, IA census records are available?
There are many types of census records for Decatur County guide you in researching your family tree. Federal Population Schedules are available for 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.
Decatur Co. Mortality Schedules can be found for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Decatur Co. Industry and Agriculture can be obtained for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Decatur Co. Union Veterans Schedules is available for 1890.
Another Iowa census is the Iowa State Census Collection from 1836-1925. One can find free online and printable census forms to help you with your research. See Also Iowa Census Records Research Guide
Decatur County, IA Courthouse and Government Records
Decatur County Courthouse
What genealogical records can I find in the Decatur County Courthouse?
The below facts shows exactly what death, marriage, birth, property, wills, and court records are typically in Decatur County. The years listed below are the first noted records with this county. See Also Iowa Corthouse Records Research Guide.
PLEASE READ FIRST!!! Please call the clerk's department to confirm hours, mailing address, fees and other specifics before visiting or requesting information because of sometimes changing contact information. The Department Offices DO NOT DO RESEARCH. The files are available to interested parties, barring private issues. Many staff will guide individuals in locating the materials, however it's up to the person to carry out the research. Decatur County was attached to Davis County for a breif time prior to organization March 6, 1850. Some early records may be found there.
The Second Courthouse was destroyed by a windstorm before it could be finished. The 3rd Courthouse was destroyed by a fire on March 31, 1874 (One book from the auditor's office and one book from the clerk's office survived). The 4th Courthouse was blown up on April 1, 1877 destroying the entire west side of the courthouse.
- Decatur County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
- Address: 207 N. Main St, Leon, IA 50144
- Phone: (641) 446-4331
- Decatur County Recorder's Office maintains official records of documents affecting title to real estate. Every real estate transaction that takes place begins in the Recorder's Office. One of the major duties of the office is the management of public records. As a result, accuracy and preservation of records are a must in the Recorder's Office. In addition to real estate transactions, the Recorder's Office issues titles and liens; records veterans discharge papers; processes passport applications; accepts marriage applications and issues the subsequent license; issues certified copies of birth, death and marriage records as well as other numerous duties.
- Birth / Death Records: 1880
- Marriage Records: 1874
- Land Records: 1851
- Decatur County Clerk of Court manages and maintains all trial court records, including pleadings, evidence and orders. The clerks of court have hundreds of administrative duties. They accept and process fines, fees and court costs owed to the state, child support checks, and civil judgments owed to litigants. They maintain a record of liens on all real estate in the county. Clerks help with involuntary hospitalization cases. They have the authority to dispose of scheduled violations which are not contested and do not require a court hearing. Clerks are also responsible for informing state and local government agencies of court orders.
- Probate Records: 1871
- Court Records: 1871
- BLM Land Records
Decatur County, IA Societies and Family History Resources
What genealogical and historical societies, archives, museums, associations and libraries are available for Decatur County, IA?
A list of Decatur County Historical and Genealogical Societies, Libraries, Archives. See also list of Statewide Iowa Archives, Historical & Genealogical Societies.
- Decatur County Genealogical Society, Lamoni Public Library, Lamoni, IA 50140
- Decatur County Historical Society, 100 block of North Main in Leon, Iowa, 50140; (641) 446-3297
- Iowa State Archives & Records Program
- State Historical Society of Iowa, Capitol Complex, Des Moines, IA 50319
- Iowa Genealogical Society, 628 E. Grand Ave., Des Moines, Iowa 50309
Where can I connect with other Decatur County, IA Researchers through message boards and forums?
What other genealogical resources are available in Decatur County, IA?
The following are web links to Genealogy, Records and Resources pertaining to Decatur County. Many of these genealogy links fall into 3 categories: Business oriented Sites, Private Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some have to have a cost. This is simply a list which has been compiled or submitted. I do not endorse or promote one genealogy site over another.
Decatur Co. IA Books, Newspapers & Publications
Decatur Co. IA Cemeteries & Church Records
- Iowa Cemetery Research Guide (raogk.org)
- Iowa Cemetery Records (search.ancestry.com) This collection is the largest compilation of the Iowa WPA cemetery records found in one single place.
- Decatur Co., Iowa Graves (findagrave.com)
- Iowa WPA Graves Registration Survey (iagenweb.org) These records contain burials throughout much of Iowa that were compiled by WPA workers in the 1930 s, including grave markers which no longer exist today. Records may be searched within a county or state-wide.
- Decatur County Tombstone Transcription Project (usgwtombstones.org)
- Decatur Co., Iowa Cemeteries (Internment.net)
- Iowa Civil War Soldier Burial Records (search.ancestry.com) At least 75,000 soldiers enlisted from the state of Iowa during the Civil War and thousands more who served from other states settled in Iowa following the Rebellion. This database currently contains a listing of over 18,800 of these service men (and a few women) who died and were buried in the state, or who enlisted from the state of Iowa and are buried elsewhere.
- Topographic Cemetery List and Map for Decatur County, Iowa
- Decatur Co., Iowa Cemetery Books (amazon.com)
- Iowa Church & Bible Research Guide (raogk.org)
- Topographic Church List and Map for Decatur County, Iowa
- Decatur County, Iowa Church Books (amazon.com)
Decatur Co. IA Family Websites, Pictures & Histories
Decatur Co. IA General and History Websites
Decatur Co. IA Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers
Decatur Co. IA Military Records
- Iowa Military Records Research Guide (raogk.org)
- Iowa Military Records (fold3.com) provides you with easy access to military records, stories, photos, and personal documents belonging to the Iowa both males and females which served. Just the thing for Decatur County genealogists, researchers, historians and more.
- Iowa Soldiers, Sailors, and Marines, 1885 (search.ancestry.com) This database contains a list of ex-soldiers, sailors, and marines who were living in Iowa in 1885.
Decatur Co. IA Schools & Directories
- Iowa Gazetteer and Business Directory, 1884-1885 (search.ancestry.com) This database contains the 1884-85 Iowa gazetteer and business directory. The gazetteer covers each city, town, village, and settlement in Iowa and includes a description of each place and a directory of the people engaged in business or the professions located there.