Columbia County, Washington
Genealogy and Facts

Columbia County

Columbia County was founded on November 11, 1875 from Walla Walla County. The county was named for the Columbia River.

The Columbia County Seat is situated in Dayton (originally called Williamson) and the county government website is http://www.columbiaco.com/

Locations bordering Columbia County are Whitman County (north), Garfield County (east), Wallowa County, Oregon (southeast), Umatilla County, Oregon (southwest), Walla Walla County (west), Franklin County (northwest).

Cities and towns found in Columbia County consists of Dayton, Starbuck

In 1806 the Lewis and Clark expedition crossed the county and later in the century, in the year 1860, the residents of the county witnessed the first steam navigation of the Snake River. Today Columbia County bases its economy on agriculture, with wheat and vegetable production leading its output.

Columbia County has Federal Census Schedules to assist in researching your family tree. Federal government Population Schedules exist for 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.

Columbia Co. Mortality Schedules can be acquired for 1880. Columbia Co. Industry and Agriculture Schedules can be found for 1880. Columbia Co. Union Veterans Schedules can be acquired for 1890. You'll find free down loadable in addition to printable census forms that can help with your research.

Columbia County Society and Family History Resources

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

Columbia County Courthouse and Government Records

Genealogist often forget the benefits of Columbia County court, probate, and land files as a source of genealogy information and facts. Buried away in Washington courthouses and archives everywhere tend to be the desires and frustrations of countless Washington men and women.

The possibilities are great that your ancestors have left a in-depth record of at least a few factors of their lives in the Columbia County court records. Even if your forebears is not discussed in a Court case, contemplate all of the other methods which could have lead to her or him appearing in court records.

Please make sure to speak to the clerk's department to confirm hours, mailing address, fees and other details prior to visiting or seeking information because of sometimes changing contact information. The Department Offices DO NOT DO RESEARCH. The documents are accessible to interested parties, barring private issues. A lot of workers will help individuals in finding the resources, however it is up to the man or women to complete the research. Although originally held in the county seat, many county land, probate, and court records have been transferred to the state archive's regional branches.

The below specifics denotes exactly what death, marriage, birth, property, wills, and court records will be in Columbia County. The dates pointed out below could be the first noted records for this particular county.

  • Columbia County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
    • Address: 341 E Main St., Dayton 99328-1361
    • Courthouse hours: 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
  • Columbia County Auditor has many responsibilities which include the recording of real property documents such as deeds and other recorded documents, issuing various licenses such as marriage liscense.
    • Birth and Death Records: 1891 to 1907 
    • Marriage Records: 1876 
    • Land Records: 1864
  • Columbia County Clerk is the administrator of the Superior Court Clerk's Office. The Clerk's Office is responsible for keeping the permanent records of all cases filed in Superior Court. The type of cases filed are felony criminal cases, civil lawsuits, petitions for protection from domestic violence, family law matters (dissolutions 3rd Party Custody, parenting plans, modifications) probates, guardianships, Last Will & Testaments, paternities, adoptions and mental commitments.
    • Court Records: 1878 
    • Probate Records: 1874 
  • Columbia County Treasurer is the property tax collector for the County. Property Taxes are levied on the property by the various taxing authorities based on the valuation and current property usage as set by the Assessor's Office.
  • Washington Office of Vital Records has copies of birth, marriage, divorce and death records. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in Washington for current fees and application process. Birth, marriage, and death records are connected with central life events.

Columbia County Links

The following are links to Family history and genealogy, Records and Resources pertaining to Columbia County. Most of these genealogy links fall into 3 categories: Commercial Sites, Private Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some require a fee. This is simply a directory that has been gathered or submitted. I do not endorse or promote one genealogy site above another. Feel free to present your own favorite Columbia County genealogy or family history affiliated sites.

Columbia Co. WA Books, Newspapers & Publications

Columbia Co. WA Birth, Marriage & Death Records

Columbia Co. WA Court, Probate Land and Tax Records

Columbia Co. WA Census Records

Columbia Co. WA Church & Cemeteries

Columbia Co. WA Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

Columbia Co. WA General and History Websites

Columbia Co. WA Immigration & Naturalization

Columbia Co. WA Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

Columbia Co. WA Military Records

Columbia Co. WA Schools & Directories

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