Search For Your Ancestors in Historical Documents




Rowan County, Kentucky

Rowan County was established on May 1, 1856 from Fleming County and Morgan County. Currently the county was named in honor of John Rowan, Congressman from Kentucky (1809–1811; 1825–1831) .

Currently the Rowan County Seat is situated in Morehead additionally, the county government website is

Locations adjacent to Rowan County happen to be Lewis County (north), Carter County (northeast), Elliott County (east), Morgan County (south), Menifee County (southwest), Bath County (west), Fleming County (northwest).

Cities and towns to be found in Rowan County comprise of Lakeview Heights, Morehead, Clearfield, Farmers, Elliotville, Haldeman, Sharkey.

Rowan County vital records can be found at the Kentucky Department of Health (VDH) Office of Vital Records which has copies for of birth & deathe certificates (1911 - present), marriage licenses & divorce decrees (since June 1958). There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in Kentucky for current fees and application process.

You can search online for Rowan County Birth, Marriage, Divorce or Death Records. You can also Order Electronically Online or you can download an application for Birth CertificateMarriage / Divorce Certificate or Death Certificates to mail.

Rowan County consists of Federal Census Schedules to guide in researching your family tree. Government Population Schedules are present for 1860, 1870, 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.

Rowan Co. Slave Schedules can be obtained for 1860. Rowan Co. Mortality Schedules can be acquired for 1860, 1870 and 1880. Rowan Co. Industry and Agriculture Schedules can be acquired for 1860, 1870 and 1880. Rowan Co. Union Veterans Schedules can be obtained for 1890. One can find free down loadable and also printable census forms that can help with your research.

Rowan County Societies and Family History Resources

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

Rowan County Courthouse and Government Records

Genealogist frequently fail to notice the advantages of Rowan County court, probate, and land files as a useful resource of genealogical information and facts. Buried away in Kentucky courthouses and archives just about everywhere tend to be the dreams and frustrations of the many Kentucky citizens.

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

Please make sure to speak to the clerk's dept to affirm hours, mailing address, fees and other particulars in advance of visiting or inquiring about information because of sometimes changing contact information. The Department Offices DO NOT DO RESEARCH. The files are available to interested parties, barring confidential issues. A lot of staff will help people in locating the materials, however it is up to the individual to do the researching.

The following facts indicates what death, marriage, birth, land, probate, and legal records are located in Rowan county.  The dates indicated below are the first known records for each county. Courthouse fires on 21 Mar 1864 and in the 1890s destroyed many records.

  • Rowand County Clerk has three main responsibilities. One is the recording of Land records (the most common documents recorded are deeds, mortgage releases, entries, warrants, surveys, mortgages, assignments, and indexes), Probate records (may include such documents as wills, estates, letters of administration, administrators, executors, probate journals, probate packets, inventories, settlements, sales, accounts, guardianship, orphans, insolvent estates, bastardy, apprentices, insanity and adoptions) and Marriage Liscenses
    • Address: 627 East Main Street, Morehead, KY, 40351
    • Phone: (606) 784-5212
    • Marriage Records: 1880
    • Land Records: 1866
    • Probate Records: 1853
  • Rowan County Clerk of the Circuit Court has countywide jurisdiction over major civil and criminal cases, divorces, and appeals from inferior courts.
    • Address: Rowan County Judicial Center, 700 W. Main St., Morehead, KY 40351
    • Phone: (606) 783-8505
    • Court Records: 1880
  • Rowan County Tax Information and Contacts. Some early tax schedules list watercourse, value and acreage of real estate, men over age twenty-one, young men between the ages of sixteen and twenty-one, slaves, and horses.
  • Rowan County Elected Officials (

Rowan County Links

The following are links to Genealogy, Records and Resources pertaining to Rowan County. These genealogy links fall into 3 categories: Professional Sites, Private Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some have to have a payment. This is basically a collection that has been gathered or submitted. I do not endorse or promote one genealogy site over another. Feel free to submit your own preferred Rowan County genealogy or family history associated sites.

Rowan Co. KY Books, Newspapers & Publications

Rowan Co. KY Birth, Marriage & Death Records

Rowan Co. KY Court, Probate Land and Tax Records

Rowan Co. KY Census Records

Rowan Co. KY Cemeteries & Graveyards

Rowan Co. KY Church & Bible Records

Rowan Co. KY Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

Rowan Co. KY General and History Websites

Rowan Co. KY Immigration & Naturalization

Rowan Co. KY Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

Rowan Co. KY Military Records

Copyright © 2014,