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Van Buren County, Michigan

VanBuren County

Van Buren County was founded on October 29, 1829 (Organized on April 3, 1837) from unorganized territory . This county was named for Martin Van Buren (1782-1862): Secretary of State in the Jackson Administration, later Vice President and eighth President of the United States.

The Van Buren County Seat is located in Paw Paw also, the county government website is

Counties bordering Van Buren County Allegan County (northeast), Kalamazoo County (east), St. Joseph County (southeast), Cass County (south), Berrien County (southwest).

Incorporated Cities & Villages located in Van Buren County include  Bangor, Gobles, Hartford, South Haven, Bloomingdale, Breedsville, Decatur, Lawrence, Lawton, Mattawan, Paw Paw.

Townships located in Van Buren County include  Almena, Antwerp, Arlington, Bangor, Bloomingdale, Columbia, Covert, Decatur, Geneva, Hamilton, Hartford, Keeler, Lawrence, Paw Paw, Pine Grove, Porter, South Haven Charter, Waverly.

Van Buren 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 Van Buren 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.

Van Buren County consists of Federal Census Schedules to guide in looking into your family tree. Federal Population Schedules can be found for 1830, 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.

Van Buren Co. Mortality Schedules can be found for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Van Buren Co. Industry and Agriculture can be obtained for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Van Buren Co. Union Veterans Schedules is available for 1890. One can find free online and printable census forms to help you with your research.

Van Buren County Societies and Family History Resources

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

Van Buren County Courthouse and Government Records

Van Buren County Courthouse

Genealogist often overlook the importance of Van Buren County court, probate, and land records as a source of genealogy and family history information. Hidden away in Michigan courthouses and archives just about everywhere tend to be the hopes and dreams and worries of countless Michigan citizens.

The chances are very good that your potential ancestors and forefathers have left a in-depth document of at least several elements of their lives in the Van Buren County court records. Even if your ancestors and forefathers is not discussed in a Court case, consider all of the other procedures which may have lead to her or him showing up in court records.

The following specifics indicates exactly what birth, death, marriage, property, probate, and legal records are in Van Buren County. The dates pointed out below are considered the first known records with this county.

Some early records  prior to organization on April 3, 1837 may be located in Cass County and Leeawee County

You need to contact the clerk's office to verify hours, mailing address, fees and other details prior to visiting or seeking information because of in some cases changing contact info. The Department Offices DO NOT DO RESEARCH. The records and documents are readily available to interested parties, barring private issues. Most staff will guide persons in locating the resources, but it's up to the man or women to carry out the researching.
  • Van Buren County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here unless otherwise noted)
    • Address: 212 Paw Paw Street, Paw Paw, MI 49079
  • Van Buren 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. Van Buren County Clerk Information for Genealogists
    • Phone: 269-657-8218
    • Births & Deaths: 1867
    • Marriage Records: 1836
  • Van Buren 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: (269) 657-8242
    • Land Records: 1836
  • Van Buren 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: (269) 657-8225
    • Probate Records: 1837 
  • Van Buren 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: (269) 657-8218
    • Court Records: 1844 

Van Buren County Links

The following are links to Genealogy and family history, Records and Resources related to Van Buren 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. Feel free to provide your own most liked Van Buren County genealogy or family history associated sites.

Van Buren Co. MI Books, Newspapers & Publications

Van Buren Co. MI Birth, Marriage & Death Records

Van Buren Co. MI Court, Probate Land and Tax Records

Van Buren Co. MI Census Records

Van Buren Co. MI Cemeteries & Graveyards

Van Buren Co. MI Church & Bible Records

Van Buren Co. MI Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

Van Buren Co. MI General and History Websites

Van Buren Co. MI Immigration & Naturalization

Van Buren Co. MI Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

Van Buren Co. MI Military Records

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