State of Oklahoma Genealogy

Francisco Vásquez de Coronado first explored the region for Spain in 1541. The U.S. acquired most of Oklahoma in 1803 in the Louisiana Purchase from France; the Western Panhandle region became U.S. territory with the annexation of Texas in 1845.

Set aside as Indian Territory in 1834, the region was divided into Indian Territory and Oklahoma Territory on May 2, 1890. The two were combined to make a new state, Oklahoma, on Nov. 16, 1907.

On April 22, 1889, the first day homesteading was permitted, 50,000 people swarmed into the area. Those who tried to beat the noon starting gun were called “Sooners,” hence the state's nickname. See also Oklahoma History Page for more Details

The State of Oklahoma was organized as Indian Territory in 1834, the region was divided into Indian Territory and Oklahoma Territory on May 2, 1890. It entered the union as the 46th state on November 16, 1907. It currently has 77 Counties.

Select a Oklahoma County Below

Getting Started with Oklahoma Family Trees and Genealogy

Oklahoma Genealogy Tips & Hints - Most research begins in public records, since these are the most readily available of the online resources for Oklahoma genealogy. One of the most unique states has to be Oklahoma simply because it contains such a wide array of cultures. Equal parts farming and prairie as well as highlands and mountains, it has witnessed a lot of growth, immigration, and different periods of history. This is why people in search of their Native American, agricultural, or even military heritage will do a search for Oklahoma genealogy information.

Searching for Oklahoma Genealogy Data - Because most people head to their computer to do research, a lot of archives and libraries have ensured that access is available to their materials through the Internet. While it is a very effective way of allowing the most people to do their research, it is not yet something available with all resources; though most websites will identify the contents of their collections.

This means that it is necessary to spend time learning which resources for Oklahoma genealogy will be primarily online tools, and which require some sort of trip in order to retrieve the genealogy materials.

Resources for Oklahoma Genealogy Materials - Most state research tends to begin with public records, and these are usually divided into three categories. You should know the differences as you begin looking for Oklahoma genealogy materials.

  • Local Records – state research will normally start at a county clerk's office or website, and will then head on to the small local libraries, historical societies, local genealogical societies, and school or college libraries for Oklahoma genealogy materials. These are items that are usually offline and viewable by appointment or special arrangement.
  • Vital Records – these cover the birth, marriage, divorce and death records from county, state, and national archives. They can also include immigration and naturalization details, cemetery or obituary information, census records, newspaper items, military records, and passenger lists and records as well. These tend to be available as online or offline resources for Oklahoma genealogy.
  • State Records – from probate information to private manuscripts, surname lists, newspapers, state census information, marriage details, military or veterans information, land records, maps, estate information, genealogical folders, death records, deeds, birth certificates, cemetery information and more; these are available as online and offline resources for Oklahoma genealogy.

Modern Tools for Oklahoma Genealogy Information - Where can you begin to find these records? Below is a list of the primary online resources for information for Oklahoma genealogy:

  • Vital Records Service, State Department of Health, 1000 Northeast 10th Street, Oklahoma City, OK 73117; Website: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/w2w/oklahoma.htm. This is the location or website in which anyone can order birth, death, marriage and divorce records via a written request or even through an online form.

Additional state and local records can be found at the:

  • Oklahoma State Archives, State Records Center, 426 East Hill Street, Oklahoma City, OK 73105-3298

All other collections and services are housed in the

  • Allen Wright Memorial Library, 200 N.E. 18th Street., Oklahoma City, OK 73105-3298; Website: http://www.odl.state.ok.us/oar/resources/genealogy.htm.

Also, consider using the resources in the Oklahoma Genealogical Society website at: http://www.okgensoc.org/.

The three websites below will give researchers a large amount of state-specific details for those in search for Oklahoma genealogy data.

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