Cowlitz County, Washington
Cowlitz County was founded on April 21, 1854 as an Original county.
The Cowlitz County Seat is situated in Kelso and the county government website is http://www.co.cowlitz.wa.us/. Past county seats were Monticello (1854-1865), Freeport (1865-1872), Kalama (1872-1922).
Cowlitz County vital records can be found at the 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.
You can search online for Cowlitz County Birth, Marriage, Divorce or Death Records. You can also Order Electronically Online or can download an application for Washington Birth or Death Certificate and Marriage or Divorce Certificate Applications to mail.
Cowlitz County has Federal Census Schedules to assist in researching your family tree. Federal government Population Schedules exist for 1870, 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.
Cowlitz Co. Mortality Schedules can be acquired for 1870 and 1880. Cowlitz Co. Industry and Agriculture Schedules can be found for 1870 and 1880. Cowlitz 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.
Cowlitz County Society and Family History Resources
A list of Cowlitz County Historical and Genealogical Societies, Forums, Message Boards, Libraries, Archives.
- Washington State Genealogy Network (facebook.com)
- Washington State Archives, Southwest Regional Branch. 1129 Washington Street SE, PO Box 40238, Olympia, WA 98504. Phone 360) 753-1684.
- Lower Columbia Genealogical Society, PO Box 472, Longview, WA 98632-0472. Involved in ongoing collection and publication of local records. Purchases materials that available for use at the Longview Public Library.
- Cowlitz County Historical Society & Museum, 405 Allen St, Kelso, WA 98626; Exhibits of 1884 log cabin, Native American artifacts, and photography collection tell the story of the many centuries of life in the Cowlitz Valley.
- Castle Rock Exhibit Hall, 147 Front Ave, Castle Rock, WA 98611. Phone 360-274-6603. Featuring exhibits that convey the impact of the Mount St. Helens eruptions on the area. Recordings offer oral histories from eyewitnesses. Other exhibits include logging equipment and historical photographs.
- The Daily News Library, 770 11th Ave, PO Box 189, Longview, WA 98632-0017. Phone 360-577-2511. Over 70 years of newspapers on microfilm. Records (births) computerized format since 1991.
- Longview Family History Center, 1721 30th Ave, Longview, WA 98632. Phone 360-577-8234.
- Cowlitz County, Washington Message Boards (boards.ancestry.com)
- Cowlitz County, Washington Genealogy Forum (genforum.genealogy.com)
- Washington State Digital Archives (digitalarchives.wa.gov)
- USGenWeb Archives for Cowlitz County (usgwarchives.net)
Cowlitz County Courthouse and Government Records
Genealogist often forget the benefits of Cowlitz 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 Cowlitz 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.
The dates pointed out below could be the first noted records for this particular county.
- Cowlitz County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
- Address: County Administration Building, 207 4th Ave N, Kelso 98626-4124
- County Administration Building hours: 8:30 am – 5:00 pm
- Cowlitz County Auditor
- Birth and Death Records: 1891 to 1907
- Marriage Records: 1854
- Land Records: 1854
- Cowlitz County Clerk Records through 1983 are available on film and accessed through reader/printer in our office. If interested in records from 1984-1992, it is suggested that a phone call to our Records Management Clerk ahead of time would assure the availability of the files when the party comes in – if they know exactly while file they need. Hours: 8:30am – 4:30pm. For judicial purposes, many of the Washington counties were attached to other counties.
- Court Records: 1860
- Probate Records: 1872
- Cowlitz County Treasurer Need owner’s name or address to locate on a map. Busy the last half of October and all of April and June. Phone calls acceptable.
Cowlitz County Links
The following are links to Family history and genealogy, Records and Resources pertaining to Cowlitz 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 Cowlitz County genealogy or family history affiliated sites.