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Clay County, Minnesota
Genealogy, History & Facts

Clay County, Minnesota Facts

Clay County

When was Clay County, MN Created?
Clay County was created on March 18, 1858 (Organized in 1872) from Pembina County. The county was named in honor of Henry Clay (1777-1852), American statesman. U.S. Senator and Congressman from Kentucky variously during the period 1806-52; U.S. Secretary of State, 1825-29; three times Speaker of the House, and three times a candidate for president.

What is the County Seat of Clay County, MN?
The County Seat is located in Moorhead and the county government website is

What counties are adjacent to Clay County, MN?
Bordering Counties are Norman County, Becker County, Otter Tail County, Wilkin County, Richland County, North Dakota, Cass County, North Dakota.

What cities and towns are in Clay County, MN?
Cities and towns located in the County include Barnesville, Comstock, Dilworth, Felton, Georgetown, Glyndon, Hawley, Hitterdal, Moorhead, Sabin, Ulen.

Clay County, MN Vital Records

Where can find Clay County Birth, marriage, Divorce and Death Records?
Clay County vital records can be found at the Minnesota Office of Vital Records which has copies of birth resords from 1900 and death records from 1908. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in Minnesota for current fees and application process.

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

Clay County, MN Census Records

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

Clay Co. Mortality Schedules can be found for 1860, 1870 and 1880. Clay Co. Industry and Agriculture Schedules can be found for 1860, 1870 and 1880. Clay Co. Union Veterans Schedules can be acquired for 1890.

Clay Co. territorial and state censuses exist for the years 1849-1905.. There is free down-loadable and also printable census forms to help you with your research. See Also Minnesota Census Records Research Guide

Clay County, MN Courthouse and Government Records

Clay County Courthouse

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

  • Clay County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
    • Address: 807 N. 11th Street, Moorhead , MN 56560
    • Phone: (218) 299-5065
  • Clay County Recorder is responsible for all the real estate records for properties located in the County. Permanent records of deeds, mortgages and other various real estate records are recorded/filed in this office. As Local Registrar, the office protects and issues certified copies of Birth and Death records, Marriage Certificates & Military Discharge Records.
    • Birth / Death Records: 1872 (It is no longer necessary to go to the registrar's office of the county where the birth or death took place. You may go to a registrar's office in any county in Minnesota for births that took place during of after 1900 and for deaths that took place during or after 1997)
    • Marriage Records: 1872
    • Land Records: 1864
  • Clay County Court Administrator maintains court files for Civil, Criminal, Traffic, Probate, Conciliation, Juvenile, Tax and Family Court matters.
    • Probate Records: 1872 
    • Court Records: 1872 
  • Clay County Land and Property Records, 1872-1947
  • Minnesota, Will Records, 1849-1985
  • Minnesota Land Records
  • BLM Land Records

Clay County, MN Societies and Family History Resources

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

Where can I connect with other Clay County, MN Researchers through message boards and forums?

What other genealogical resources are available in Clay County, MN?
The following are web links to Genealogy, Records and Resources pertaining to Clay County. Each of these genealogy links fall into 3 categories: Professional Sites, Personal Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some have to have a fee. This is simply a list which has been gathered or submitted. I do not endorse or promote one genealogy site above another.

Clay Co. MN Books, Newspapers & Publications

Clay Co. MN Cemeteries & Church Records

Clay Co. MN Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

Clay Co. MN General and History Websites

Clay Co. MN Immigration & Naturalization

Clay Co. MN Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

Clay Co. MN Military Records

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