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Ottawa County, Michigan
Genealogy, History & Facts

Ottawa County, Michigan Facts

Ottawa County

When was Ottawa County, MI Created?
Ottawa County was created on March 2, 1831 (Organized on December 19, 1837) from Mackinac County and unorganized territory . This county was named for the Native American Ottawa people.

What is the County Seat of Ottawa County, MI?
The County Seat is located in Grand Haven also, the county government website is

What counties are adjacent to Ottawa County, MI?
Bordering Counties are Muskegon County, Kent County, Allegan County.

What cities and towns are in Ottawa County, MI?
Cities and towns located in the County include  Coopersville, Ferrysburg, Grand Haven, Holland, Hudsonville, Zeeland, Spring Lake.

What Townships are in Ottawa County, MI?
Townships located in the County include  Allendale Charter, Blendon, Chester, Crockery, Georgetown Charter, Grand Haven Charter, Holland Charter, Jamestown Charter, Olive, Park, Polkton Charter, Port Sheldon, Robinson, Spring Lake, Tallmadge Charter, Wright, Zeeland Charter.

Ottawa County, MI Vital Records

Where can find Ottawa County Birth, marriage, Divorce and Death Records?
Ottawa County vital records can be found at the Michigan Office of Vital Records has copies of birth, marriage, divorce and death records since 1867. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in Michigan for current fees and application process.

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

Ottawa County, MI Census Records

What Ottawa County, MI census records are available?
There are many types of census records for Ottawa 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.

Ottawa Co. Mortality Schedules can be found for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Ottawa Co. Industry and Agriculture can be obtained for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Ottawa Co. Union Veterans Schedules is available for 1890. One can find free online and printable census forms to help you with your research. See Also Michigan Census Records Research Guide

Ottawa County, MI Courthouse and Government Records

Ottawa County Courthouse

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

  • Ottawa County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here unless otherwise noted)
    • Address: 12220 Fillmore Street, West Olive, MI 49460
  • Ottawa County Clerk is responsible for keeping records of births, deaths, assumed names, co-partnerships, issuing and filing marriage licenses, gun permits, notary bonds and processing passports. The date listed for each category of record is the earliest record known to exist in that county. It does not indicate that there are numerous records for that year and certainly does not indicate that all such events that year were actually registered. Ottawa County Clerk Information for Genealogists
    • Phone: 616-994-4531
    • Births & Deaths: 1866
    • Marriage Records: 1848
  • Ottawa County Register of Deeds is the official recording officer for all legal documents pertaining to the transfers and encumbrances of all real estate property within the County. The Register also provides permanent storage for approved original subdivision plats, condominiums, land surveys and section corners.
    • Phone: (616) 994-4510
    • Land Records: 1834
  • Ottawa County Clerk of the Probate Court responsibilities include adjudicating and disposes of cases involving property of persons who have died or become incompetent, interprets wills and trusts, commits the mentally ill when necessary and appoints guardians and conservators for minors, incapacitated individuals and individuals with developmental disability.
    • Phone: (616) 786-4110
    • Probate Records: 1844 
  • Ottawa County Clerk of the Circuit Court provides a variety of functions for the court such as, but not limited to: filing and maintaing the official record for all cases that come before the court; providing staff to assist in the operation of the court; working with the Jury Commission and notifying all potential jurors to appear for jury duty; and, processing felony criminal cases bound over from the District Court.
    • Phone: (616) 846-8320
    • Court Records: 1839 
  • Michigan Land Records
  • Michigan Probate Records 1797-1973  
  • BLM Land Records

Ottawa County, MI Societies and Family History Resources

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

Where can I connect with other Ottawa County, MI Researchers through message boards and forums?

What other genealogical resources are available in Ottawa County, MI?
The following are web links to Genealogy, Records and Resources pertaining to Ottawa County. Most of these genealogy links fall into 3 categories: Commercial Sites, Private Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some have to have a fee. This is just a list that has been compiled or submitted. I do not endorse or promote one genealogy site above another.

Ottawa Co. MI Books, Newspapers & Publications

Ottawa Co. MI Cemeteries & Church Records

Ottawa Co. MI Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

Ottawa Co. MI General and History Websites

Ottawa Co. MI Immigration & Naturalization

Ottawa Co. MI Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

Ottawa Co. MI Military Records

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