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Des Moines County, Iowa
Genealogy, History & Facts

Des Moines County, Iowa Facts

Des Moines County

When was Des Moines County, IA Created?
Des Moines County was established on October 1, 1834 from Michigan Territory. The county was named for the Des Moines River, river that once ran through the county

What is the County Seat of Des Moines County, IA?
The County Seat is located in Burlington and the county government website is

What counties are adjacent to Des Moines County, IA?
Bordering Counties are Louisa County (north), Mercer County, Illinois (east), Henderson County, Illinois (southeast), Lee County (south), Henry County (west).

What cities and towns are in Des Moines County, IA?
Cities and towns located in the County include Burlington, Danville, Mediapolis, Middletown, West Burlington.

Des Moines County, IA Vital Records

Where can find Des Moines County Birth, marriage, Divorce and Death Records?
Des Moines 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 Des Moines 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.

Des Moines County, IA Census Records

What Des Moines County, IA census records are available?
There are many types of census records for Des Moines County guide you in researching your family tree. Federal Population Schedules are available for 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.

Des Moines Co. Mortality Schedules can be found for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Des Moines Co. Industry and Agriculture can be obtained for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Des Moines 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

Des Moines County, IA Courthouse and Government Records

Des Moines County Courthouse

What genealogical records can I find in the Des Moines County Courthouse?
The below facts shows exactly what death, marriage, birth, property, wills, and court records are typically in Des Moines County. The years listed below are the first noted records with this county. See Also Iowa Corthouse Records Research Guide.

  • Des Moines County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
    • Address: 513 N Main St, Burlington, IA 52601
    • Phone: (319) 753-8203
  • Des Moines 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: 1835
    • Land Records: 1837
  • Des Moines 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: 1835 
    • Court Records: 1835 
  • BLM Land Records

Des Moines County, IA Societies and Family History Resources

What genealogical and historical societies, archives, museums, associations and libraries are available for Des Moines County, IA?
A list of Des Moines County Historical  and Genealogical Societies, Libraries, Archives. See also list of Statewide Iowa Archives, Historical & Genealogical Societies.

Where can I connect with other Des Moines County, IA Researchers through message boards and forums?

What other genealogical resources are available in Des Moines County, IA?
The following are web links to Genealogy, Records and Resources pertaining to Des Moines 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.

Des Moines Co. IA Books, Newspapers & Publications

Des Moines Co. IA Cemeteries & Church Records

Des Moines Co. IA Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

Des Moines Co. IA General and History Websites

Des Moines Co. IA Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

Des Moines Co. IA Military Records

Des Moines Co. IA Schools & Directories

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