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Clay County, Minnesota

Clay County

Clay County was founded 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.

The Clay County Seat is situated in Moorhead and the county government website is

Locales adjacent to Clay County are Norman County (north), Becker County (east), Otter Tail County (southeast), Wilkin County (south), Richland County, North Dakota (southwest), Cass County, North Dakota (west).

Cities and towns to be found in Clay County are made up of Barnesville, Comstock, Dilworth, Felton, Georgetown, Glyndon, Hawley, Hitterdal, Moorhead, Sabin, Ulen.

Townships Include Alliance, Barnesville, Cromwell, Eglon, Elkton, Elmwood, Felton, Flowing, Georgetown, Glyndon, Goose Prairie, Hagen, Hawley, Highland Grove, Holy Cross, Humboldt, Keene, Kragnes, Kurtz, Moland, Moorhead, Morken, Oakport, Parke, Riverton, Skree, Spring Prairie, Tansem, Ulen, Viding Townships.

Clay County vital records can be found at the Minnesota Office of Vital Records which has copies of birth and death records. 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. Birth, marriage, and death records are connected with central life events.

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 does have Federal Census Schedules to help in finding out about your family tree. Federal government Population Schedules are present 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 following years: 1865, 1875, 1885, 1895 and 1905. There is free down-loadable and also printable census forms to aid with your research.

Clay County Society and Family History Resources

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

Clay County Courthouse and Government Records

Clay County Courthouse

Genealogist frequently overlook the benefits of Clay County court, probate, and land documents as a source of genealogy and family history information. Buried away in Minnesota courthouses and archives just about everywhere tend to be the aspirations and worries of many Minnesota men and women.

The chances are great that your particular ancestors and forefathers have left a in-depth record of at least some aspects of their lives in the Clay County court records. Even if your ancestors and forefathers is not brought up in a Court case, consider all of the other procedures which may have lead to him or her showing up in court records.

The below details shows whatever marriage, birth, death, property, probate, and court records will be in Clay County. The dates indicated listed below are the first widely known records data in this county. At some time Clay County was attached to Stearns County, Crow Wing County, Douglas County and Becker County for county and or judicial purposes. Some early records may be found there.

You need to get in touch with the clerk's office to confirm hours, mailing address, fees and other facts in advance of visiting or seeking information because of occasionally changing contact info. The Department Offices DO NOT DO RESEARCH. The data files are available to interested parties, barring confidential issues. Many staff will help persons in locating the resources, however it's up to the man or women to perform the researching.
  • 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 Treasurers Office is responsible for keeping a complete accounting of all monies collected and expended by all the county departments. This includes the investing of available funds and accurately distributing the interest received. The department is also responsible for the collection of taxes and distribution to the various taxing entities within the County.

Clay County Links

The following are links to Genealogy and family history, 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. Feel free to furnish your own preferred Clay County genealogy or family history affiliated sites.

Clay Co. MN Books, Newspapers & Publications

Clay Co. MN Birth, Marriage & Death Records

Clay Co. MN Court, Probate Land and Tax Records

Clay Co. MN Census Records

Clay Co. MN Cemeteries & Graveyards

Clay Co. MN Church & Bible 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

Clay Co. MN Schools & Directories

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