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Pottawattamie County, Iowa
Genealogy, History & Facts

Pottawattamie County, Iowa Facts

When was Pottawattamie County, IA Created?
Pottawattamie County was established on September 21, 1848 from Unorganized Territory. The county was named in honor of the Potawatomi (Pottawattamie) Native American term meaning “Blowers of Fire, ” “Keepers of the Council Fires, ” or “Makers of Fire.”

What is the County Seat of Pottawattamie County, IA?
The County Seat is located in Council Bluffs and the county government website is

What counties are adjacent to Pottawattamie County, IA?
Bordering Counties are Harrison CountyShelby CountyCass CountyMontgomery CountyMills CountySarpy County, Nebraska, Douglas County, Nebraska, Washington County, Nebraska.

What cities and towns are in Pottawattamie County, IA?
Cities and towns located in the County include Avoca, Carson, Carter Lake, Council Bluffs, Crescent, Hancock, Macedonia, McClelland, Minden, Neola, Oakland, Treynor, Underwood, Walnut.

Pottawattamie County, IA Vital Records

Where can find Pottawattamie County Birth, marriage, Divorce and Death Records?
Pottawattamie County vital records can be found at the Iowa Office of Vital Records which has copies of birth, marriage and death records from July 1880. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in Iowa for current fees and application process.

You can search online for Pottawattamie County Birth, Marriage, Divorce or Death Records. You can also Order Electronically Online or can download an application for Iowa Birth CertificateMarriage CertificateDeath Certificate Application to mail.

Pottawattamie County, IA Census Records

What Pottawattamie County, IA census records are available?
There are many types of census records for Pottawattamie County guide you in researching your family tree. Federal Population Schedules are available for 1850186018701880 (free index)1890 (fragment)19001910192019301940.

Pottawattamie Co. Mortality Schedules can be found for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Pottawattamie Co. Industry and Agriculture can be obtained for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Pottawattamie Co. Union Veterans Schedules is available for 1890.

Another Iowa census is the Iowa State Census Collection from 1836-1925. One can find free online and printable census forms to help you with your research. See Also Iowa Census Records Research Guide

Pottawattamie County, IA Courthouse and Government Records

Pottawattamie County Courthouse

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

  • Pottawattamie County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
    • Address: 227 S 6th St, Council Bluffs, IA 51503
    • Phone: (712) 328-5604
  • Pottawattamie County Recorder’s Office maintains official records of documents affecting title to real estate. Every real estate transaction that takes place begins in the Recorder’s Office. One of the major duties of the office is the management of public records. As a result, accuracy and preservation of records are a must in the Recorder’s Office. In addition to real estate transactions, the Recorder’s Office issues titles and liens; records veterans discharge papers; processes passport applications; accepts marriage applications and issues the subsequent license; issues certified copies of birth, death and marriage records as well as other numerous duties.
    • Birth / Death Records: 1880
    • Marriage Records: 1848
    • Land Records: 1849
  • Pottawattamie County Clerk of Court manages and maintains all trial court records, including pleadings, evidence and orders. The clerks of court have hundreds of administrative duties. They accept and process fines, fees and court costs owed to the state, child support checks, and civil judgments owed to litigants. They maintain a record of liens on all real estate in the county. Clerks help with involuntary hospitalization cases. They have the authority to dispose of scheduled violations which are not contested and do not require a court hearing. Clerks are also responsible for informing state and local government agencies of court orders.
    • Probate Records: 1846
    • Court Records: 1876
  • BLM Land Records

Pottawattamie County, IA Societies and Family History Resources

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

Where can I connect with other Pottawattamie County, IA Researchers through message boards and forums?

What other genealogical resources are available in Pottawattamie County, IA?
The following are web links to Genealogy, Records and Resources pertaining to Pottawattamie County. Many of these genealogy links fall into 3 categories: Business oriented Sites, Private Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some have to have a cost. This is simply a list which has been compiled or submitted. I do not endorse or promote one genealogy site over another.

Pottawattamie Co. IA Books, Newspapers & Publications

Pottawattamie Co. IA Cemeteries & Church Records

Pottawattamie Co. IA Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

Pottawattamie Co. IA General and History Websites

Pottawattamie Co. IA Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

Pottawattamie Co. IA Military Records

Pottawattamie Co. IA Schools & Directories