Hardin County, Tennessee Genealogy

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Guide to Hardin County, Tennessee ancestry, family history and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

Hardin County, Tennessee
Boundary map of Hardin County, Tennessee
Map of Tennessee highlighting Hardin County
Location in the state of Tennessee
Map of the U.S. highlighting Tennessee
Location of Tennessee in the U.S.
Founded: November 13, 1819
County Seat Savannah
Website: www.tourhardincounty.org
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Description[edit | edit source]

The County was named for Col. Joseph Hardin, a Revolutionary War soldier and a legislative representative for the Province of North Carolina; the State of Franklin; and the Southwest Territory. The County is located in the southwest area of the state. [1]

Hardin County, Tennessee Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[2]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1881 1864 1881 1820 1820 1825 1810
Statewide registration for births and deaths began in 1914. General compliance by 1927.

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]


Hardin County Courthouse, Savannah, Tenn. Courtesy: Collection: County Court Houses, Flickr by Jimmy Emerson. Used by permission.

Hardin County Courthouse
 601 Main Street;
Savannah, TN 38372
Phone: 901.925.8166 

County Clerk has marriage records from 1864,
divorce, land, probate and court records. [3]

Hardin County Clerk
Marriage, probate, land and court records
500 Court Street
Savannah, TN 38372
Phone: 1-731-925-3921

Mon., Tues., Thurs., Fri. 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Wed. and Sat. 8 a.m.-noon

History[edit | edit source]

West Tennessee county. Established 1819.

The county is named after "Joseph Hardin legislator of the Southwest Territory and State of Franklin."[4]

Parent County[edit | edit source]

1819--Hardin County was created 13 November 1819 from Chickasaw Indian Lands.
County seat: Savannah[5]

County Pronunciation[edit | edit source]

  1. Hear it spoken[6] (female)
  2. Hear it spoken[7] (male)

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

For animated maps illustrating Tennessee county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Tennessee County Boundary Maps" (1777-1985) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]


1859, 1864, 1949 Fires damaged courthouse records.[8]

  • Lost marriage records: 1819 to 1863
  • Lost probate records: 1819 to 1836

For suggestions about research in places that suffered historic record losses, see:

Places/Localities[edit | edit source]

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit HomeTown Locator. The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county:[9]

Unincorporated communities
Census-designated places

Neighboring Counties[edit | edit source]

Resources[edit | edit source]

Getting Started[edit | edit source]

Use the free Search for Surnames at Mountain Press's website to quickly search a variety of published Hardin County biography, cemetery, and history records. To determine which books are being searched, or to search each publication's index individually, click here. You are now equipped with a checklist of books to pull off the shelves at a genealogy library, or a wish list for your personal book collection.

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

African American[edit | edit source]

United States African Americans Gotoarrow.png Tennessee African Americans

Census takers found no free African Americans living in Hardin County, Tennessee in 1820.[10]

Resources include:

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Tombstone Transcriptions Online Tombstone Transcriptions in Print List of Cemeteries in the county
Findagrave.com Family History Library Findagrave.com
TNGenWeb WorldCat BillionGraves
TNGenWeb Archives Linkpendium
Tombstone Project Gravestones
TNGenWeb Cemeteries Interment
See Tennessee Cemeteries for more information.

Additional Cemetery Resources

Census[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1820 1,462
1830 4,868 233.0%
1840 8,245 69.4%
1850 10,328 25.3%
1860 11,214 8.6%
1870 11,768 4.9%
1880 14,793 25.7%
1890 17,698 19.6%
1900 19,246 8.7%
1910 17,521 −9.0%
1920 17,291 −1.3%
1930 16,213 −6.2%
1940 17,806 9.8%
1950 16,908 −5.0%
1960 17,397 2.9%
1970 18,212 4.7%
1980 22,280 22.3%
1990 22,633 1.6%
2000 25,578 13.0%
2010 26,026 1.8%
Source: "Wikipedia.org".

1820, 1830, 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, and 1940 federal population censuses of Hardin County are available online. For tips on accessing census records online, see Tennessee Census. If you're having trouble finding your ancestors in online indexes, try checking printed indexes. Created by local experts familiar with the area's families, these indexes are often transcribed more accurately than nationwide online indexes.

See Tennessee Population Schedule Indexes: Fiche, Film, or Book for more information about statewide printed indexes.

See Hardin County, TN census assignments, including links to transcribed files. The USGenWeb Census Project®

1810 - 1891


  • Bentley, Elizabeth P. Index to the 1820 Census of Tennessee. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1981. FHL 976.8 X22b 1820


  • Brown, Albert The 1833 census of males 21 and over, Hardin Co., Tennessee Bethel Springs, Tennessee: History and genealogy, c1994. FHL US/CAN book 976.831 X28


  • Curtis, Janet Austin 1840 U.S. census, Hardin County, Tennessee Fort Worth, Texas : American Reference Publishing Company, 1972 FHL US/CAN book 976.8 A1

1840 Pensioners




  • Sistler, Barbara 1880 census Hardin County, Tennessee Nashville, Tennessee : B. Sistler and Associates, 2001 FHL US/CAN book 976.831 X2
  • Brown, Albert The 1880 Census of Hardin County, Tennessee Bethel Springs, Tennessee : A. Brown, c1994 FHL US/CAN book 976.831 X28

1890 - Lost, but substitutes are available:

  • Burress, Reita Jones. "1890 Civil War Veterans Census of Hardin County, Tennessee," available online.

1891 Male Voters

Church[edit | edit source]

Court[edit | edit source]

DNA[edit | edit source]

DNA Double Helix.png
DNA has been collected from men claiming descent from the following Hardin County residents. Attempts have not been made to verify the lineages of those tested.
  • Doss - Descendant of Reuben Jackson Doss (1820-1910), resident of Shelby, Colbert, and Marion counties, Alabama and Hardin County, Tennessee. Y-DNA 67 Marker Test, FTDNA (Kit 76381). Genetic signature available online (labeled Wi-1), genealogical description available online, courtesy: The Doss DNA Project, World Families. Matches have been found.

Family Histories[edit | edit source]

It is anticipated that this bibliography will eventually identify all known family histories published about residents of this county. Use this list to:

  • Locate publications about direct ancestors
  • Find the most updated accounts of an ancestor's family
  • Identify publications, to quote Elizabeth Shown Mills, about an ancestor's "FAN Club" (Friends, Associates, and Neighbors)


As of August 2010, a query for persons born in Hardin, Tennessee at World Connect, results in more than 45,000 entries.


  • Bratton - Jones, Louise Brint Family History of our Brattons, Masseys and Martins Salt Lake City, Utah? : L.B. Jones, 1985. Available at the Family History Library FHL book 929.273 B737j.
  • Brooks - Brooks, Moses Edward. Descendants of James Brooks. Unknown: unknown, 1974. Available at Heritage Quest Online ($).
  • Cook - See Grimes
  • Grimes - Grimes, Jay Cook. Grimes, Cook and Related Families of Wayne County, Tennessee: A Genealogy. Related Families, Johnson, Morris, Montague, 1800-1960. Auburn, Alabama: J.C. Grimes, 1960. Available at FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 G883gc and FHL US/CAN Film 1321218 Item 4; digital versions available at Ancestry ($); Heritage Quest Online ($); and World Vital Records ($).
  • Johnson - See Grimes
  • Martin - See Bratton
  • Massey - See Bratton
  • McDougal - The McDougal Family in Hardin County, Tennessee. MSS., Paducah, Ky. Microfilmed in 1963. FHL US/CAN Film 301102 Item 53.
  • Montague - See Grimes
  • Morris - See Grimes
  • Rose - Rose, Christine. Ancestors and Descendants of Frederick Rose : of Sussex County, Virginia, Orange County, North Carolina, and Wayne and Hardin Counties, Tennessee. San Jose, Calif.: C.C. Rose, 1980. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 R72rch.

Land[edit | edit source]

  • Hardin County Register of Deeds has Land Records from 1835 and is located at the Courthouse, 601 Main St., Savannah, TN 38372-2061; Telephone: (731) 925-3921.Land and property records include transfer of real estate or personal property, mortgages, leases, surveys, and entries.
  • The Family History Library has microfilmed copies of deeds 1835-1892 with indexes1835-1903; land entries 1820-1820-1853, tax sales to the state 1896-1913; and survey books1824-1934.

Law and Legislation[edit | edit source]

  • Tennessee State Library and Archives, Acts of Tennessee 1796-1850: Index to Names. January 25, 2005. In addition to creating new laws, legislative acts were often required to obtain a divorce, grant legitimacy to a child, or for appointments to or grant payments for public service. The TSLA has created an index to names that appear in these acts covering the years 1796 to 1850. To read more about this valuable resource Click here. The searchable index is available at the TSLA; another version is available at World Vital Records.

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Maps[edit | edit source]

Decatur CountyWayne CountyLauderdale CountyTishomingo CountyMcNairy CountyChester CountyHenderson CountyTN HARDIN.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

[edit | edit source]

Revolutionary War[edit | edit source]

The following Hardin County Revolutionary War records are available online through TNGenWeb:

Additional resources include:

War of 1812[edit | edit source]
Civil War[edit | edit source]

Online Records

Regiments. Civil War service men from Hardin County served in various regiments. Men often joined a regiment or a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are the military units that were formed in or had many men from Hardin County:

Confederate Soldiers

Union Soldiers

Additional sources for Civil War soldiers from Hardin County:

The Civil War Battle of Shiloh took place in Hardin County, a few miles southwest of Savannah,on the Tennessee River near an area called Pittsburg Landing. Shiloh Military Park occupies this site today.

Civil War Battle[edit | edit source]

The following Civil War Battles were fought in Hardin County:

  • April 6 - 7, 1862 = Shiloh[11]
  • April 29 - June 10, 1862 = Corinth[12] See [http://www.nps.gov/hps/abpp/battles/MSmap.htm Map showing battle taking place in Mississippi.
Map showing Civil War battles in Tennessee.

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Many Tennessee newspapers are filmed and available at the TSLA. Most of these newspapers may be accessed by interlibrary loan to libraries within Tennessee, although there are some newspapers which are not available in or outside of Tennessee. For further information regarding interlibrary loan policies and newspapers not available for interlibrary loan click here. For a list of newspapers available at the archives for Hardin County click on the following city:

Occupations[edit | edit source]

  • Miller, Alan N. West Tennessee's Forgotten Children: Apprentices from 1821 to 1889. Baltimore, Md.: Printed for Clearfield Company, Inc., by Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 2006. FHL US/CAN 976.8 U2man. Purchase at Genealogical.com. Includes Hardin County.

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Tap into the minds of local experts. Editors of genealogical periodicals publish unique sources that researchers who are new to their area would not likely discover. This type of material may be found in local, regional, or statewide genealogical society journals. The following periodicals cover this county:

Ansearchin' News
Genealogical articles with abstracts of Hardin County, Tennessee Genealogy records have been published in Ansearchin' News, the quarterly magazine of the Tennessee Genealogical Society. To view a list of these articles, visit their county index. To read digitized versions of the first 36 years of articles (Vols. 1-36), browse their archive or conduct a surname search. The Family History Library has a complete collection of the Ansearchin' News quarterly FHL Book 976.8 B2a.

Family Findings
Genealogical articles with abstracts of Hardin County, Tennessee records have been published in Family Findings, the quarterly of the Mid-West Tennessee Genealogical Society (42+ vols.). The Family History Library has most issues of this quarterly FHL US/CAN 976.8 B2f.
Tables of contents for some volumes are available online, courtesy: TNGenWeb Project:
Many articles from this publication have been reproduced on the TNGenWeb Project website, try this specialized Google search.
Hardin County Historical Quarterly
Indexed in the PERiodical Source Index (PERSI)
West Tennessee Historical Society Papers
Family History Library has Volumes 1 - 16 and 30 FHL US/CAN Book 976.81 B5w. The West Tennessee Historical Society Papers are indexed in PERiodical Source Index (PERSI)
To view Table of Contents and complete articles from 1947 - 2005 see Shelby County Register of Deeds

Prisons[edit | edit source]

Learn if your Hardin County, Tennessee Genealogy ancestors went to prison!

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

The County Court has responsibility for the probate records of Hardin County.

Online Records

FamilySearch has placed scans of the following records online in the Tennessee, Probate Court Books, 1795-1927 collection. These are browse-only collections. Handwritten indexes may be found at the front or back of some volumes:

  • Wills, 1838-1921 (2 vols.)
  • Settlements, Wills, 1842-1848 ("Vol. D")
  • Inventories, Wills, 1836-1842 ("Vol. B")
  • Administrator records, 1873-1878
  • Bonds, 1895-1927
  • Bonds, Letters, 1874-1915 (3 vols.)
  • Insolvent estate records, 1873-1896
  • Inventories, 1865-1916 (3 vols.)
  • Settlements, 1836-1916 (4 vols.)

The following Hardin County probate records have been indexed:

  • 1779 - 1861 Sistler, Byron and Barbara Sistler. Index to Tennessee Wills & Administrations 1779-1861. Nashville, Tenn. Byron Sistler & Associates, Inc., 1990. FHL US/CAN 976.8 P22s. Includes an index to this county's probate records.
  • 1866 - 1902 Brown, Albert. Index to Guardians Settlement Records, Jul 1866 - Jul 1902. Bethel Springs, Tennessee: A. Brown, 1994. (FHL 976.829 P28b.)
  • USGenWeb's Hardin County page has links to some wills and estate records.

Taxation[edit | edit source]

The original Hardin County Record of Tax Sales to the State records 1896-1913 were microfilmed by the TSLA. FHL copy: FHL US/CAN Film 983534 Item 1.

The original Hardin County State Tax on Mortgage records 1917-1928 were microfilmed by TSLA. FHL copy: FHL US/CAN Film 983534 Item 2.

The following Hardin County tax records have been abstracted:[13]

  • 1821 - 1823 "Hardin County Sheriff Seeks to Collect Three Years of Unpaid Taxes," (1821-1823) Ansearchin' News, Vol. 47, No. 1 (Spring 2000):17-18. For access, see Periodicals.
  • 1833 "1833 Enumeration, Hardin County, Tennessee," Ansearchin' News, Vol. 30, No. 4 (Winter 1983):159-163. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 B2a v. 29-30 (1982-1983); free digital version at society's website. For further access, see Periodicals.
  • 1836 - 1837 "Hardin County, Tennessee 1836 Civil District Map" and "Hardin County, Tennessee 1836 and 1837 Tax Lists," Ansearchin' News, Vol. 37, No. 1 (Spring 1990):20-26; Vol. 37, No. 2 (Summer 1990):81-87. For access, see Periodicals.
  • 1836 - 1837 Brown, Albert. 1836 & 1837 Tax List Hardin Co., Tennessee. Bethel Springs, Tenn.: History & Genealogy, 1994. FHL US/CAN Book 976.831 R49b.
  • 1862 - 1866 Direct Tax Assessment List, 1862-66, Hardin County Historical Quarterly, Vol. 1, No. 1 (Jul. 1982); Vol. 1, No. 2 (Oct. 1982); Vol. 1, No. 4 (Apr. 1983); Vol. 21, No. 1 (Jan. 1984); Vol. 2, No. 2 (Apr. 1984); Vol. 2, No. 4 (Oct. 1984); Vol. 3, No. 2 (Apr. 1985); Vol. 3, No. 3 (Jul. 1985); Vol. 3, No. 4 (Oct. 1985); Vol. 4, No. 1 (Jan. 1986); Vol. 4, No. 2 (Apr. 1986); Vol. 4, No. 3 (Jul. 1986); Vol. 4, No. 4 (Oct. 1986).

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

See also How to order Tennessee Vital Records or order electronically online.

Birth[edit | edit source]
Marriage[edit | edit source]

Marriages were not officially recorded in Hardin County during the first few years of its existence. In 1838, a law was passed mandating the practice.[14] The following publication, based on early newspapers, helps to alleviate this genealogical obstacle:

The following Hardin County Courthouse marriage records have been abstracted and/or indexed:

  • 1859 - 1881 - Brewington, Tonney R. Marriage records of Hardin County, Tennessee, 1859-1881: a listing of marriage data taken directly from the marriage registers found in the Hardin County courthouse Enville, Tennessee: Brewington Genealogical Services, c1991. FHL US/CAN Book 976.831 V2b
  • 1859 - 1887 - Brown, Albert Hardin County, Tennessee, marriages index, 1859-1887 Bethel Springs, Tennessee: A. Brown, c1994. FHL US/CAN Book 976.831 V28b
  • 1863 - 1958 - Hardin County (Tennessee) County Court Clerk Marriage records (Hardin County, Tennessee), 1863-1958 Nashville, Tennessee: Tennessee State Library and Archives, (197-?-1988). FHL US/CAN Film 981000, 879045-48, 1928699-701
  • 1865 - 1868 - Historical Records Survey (Tennessee) Marriage records, 1865-1868, Hardin County, Tennessee Salt Lake City, Utah: Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 1939. FHL US/CAN Film 24684 item 3
Divorce[edit | edit source]

In 1940 and 1941, W.P.A. workers pinpointed the location of Hardin County divorce papers in diverse manuscript collections, see the following records:

  • W.P.A. Guide to Public Vital Statistics in Tennessee. Nashville, Tenn.: The Tennessee Historical Records Survey, 1941. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 A3gp.
Death[edit | edit source]

For deaths of Methodists in Hardin County between the 1830s and the 1920s, try searching the following resources:

Societies and Libraries[edit | edit source]

See also a List of Tennessee Archives, Libraries, Publications, Historical & Genealogical Societies

Hardin County Library
1365 Pickwick St
Savannah, TN 38372
Mon, Tues, Thurs 9 am - 8 pm
Wed 9 am - 12 pm, Fri 9 am - 5 pm
Sat 9 am - 1 pm
Genealogical Resources: Census Records, Birth, Marriage, and Death Records, Probate Records, Newspapers including The Savannah Courier, Deeds, Court Minutes, Tax Lists, etc.
Hardin County Historical Society
P.O. Box 1012
Savannah, TN 38372
West Tennessee Heritage Study Center
Paul Meek Library
University of Tennessee at Martin
Hours vary by semester
The Heritage Study Center holds a variety of genealogical resources including materials relating to the following counties in Tennessee: Benton, Carroll, Chester, Crockett, Decatur, Dyer, Fayette, Gibson, Hardin, Haywood, Henderson, Henry, Houston, Humphreys, Lake, Lauderdale, Madison, McNairy, Obion, Perry, Shelby, Stewart, Tipton, Wayne, Weakley and Carlisle, Fulton, and Hickman counties in Kentucky.
West Tennessee Historical Society
P.O. Box 111046
Memphis, TN 38111

Family History Centers[edit | edit source]

Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance, free access to center-only databases, and to premium genealogical websites.
FamilySearch Affiliate Libraries have access to most center-only databases, but may not always have full services normally provided by a family history center.

Local Centers and Libraries

Websites[edit | edit source]

Wikipedia has more about this subject: Hardin County, Tennessee

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Wikipedia contributors, "Hardin, Tennessee" in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hardin_County,_Tennessee accessed 21 Dec 2018
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Hardin County, Tennessee. Page 638-645 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002; Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Third ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 2004), 637-640.
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Hardin County, Tennessee page 640, At various libr40ries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  4. "List of counties in Tennessee," Wikipedia.
  5. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), 640. (FHL Book 973 D27e 2002). WorldCat entry.
  6. Voice of Lynnae Weller, Kingsport, Tenn. (2010).
  7. Voice of Gene Black, FamilySearch employee, former resident of Bristol, Tenn. (2010).
  8. Lost Records: Courthouse Fires and Disasters in Tennessee in Tennessee State Library and Archives in Tennessee Secretary of State (accessed 13 March 2016).
  9. Wikipedia contributors, "Hardin County, Tennessee," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hardin_County,_Tennessee, accessed 17 November 2019.
  10. *Waldrep, G.C. "'Free Colored' Heads of Household in the 1820 Tennessee Census," available online, courtesy: Free African Americans website.
  11. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State.
  12. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State.
  13. The Heritage Quest Online version of PERSI aided in the compilation of this list.
  14. Gale Williams Bamman, C.G., "Research in Tennessee," National Genealogical Society Quarterly, Vol. 81, No. 2 (June 1993):105. FHL 973 B2ng v. 81
  15. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/images/d/d3/Igitennesseef.pdf.