Minnesota, County Marriages - FamilySearch Historical Records

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Minnesota, County Marriages, 1860-1949
This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
United States
Minnesota flag.png
Flag of Minnesota
US Locator Minnesota.png
Location of Minnesota
Record Description
Record Type Marriage Records
Collection years 1860-1949
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Multiple county courthouses

What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]

This collection consists of an index and images of county marriage records for Minnesota. It covers the years 1860 to 1949.

Most of this collection consists of marriage licenses, applications, records, registers, and certificates. The records are arranged by county, then by volume and year range. The form type varies between register style and certificate style. County clerks usually used the same printed form during the same time periods. Marriage records were generally well preserved, although fires, floods, or other disasters may have destroyed some records.

The earliest marriage bonds and licenses were usually handwritten on loose papers that were later bound into lettered volumes. Some marriage records had multiple entries on each page, while others had single records per page.

Civil marriage records were created to legalize marital relationships and to protect the interests of the wife and other heirs to legal claims on property.

The marriage date, place, residence of the bride and groom, and occupations are relatively reliable. Other information, such as age or birthplace, is dependent on the knowledge, memory, and accuracy of the informants, usually the bride and groom.

Image Visibility[edit | edit source]

Whenever possible FamilySearch makes images and indexes available for all users. However, rights to view these data are limited by contract and subject to change. Because of this there may be limitations on where and how images and indexes are available or who can see them. Please be aware some collections consist only of partial information indexed from the records and do not contain any images. For additional information about image restrictions see Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections.

What Can These Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]

The following information may be found in these records:

  • Date and place of marriage
  • Name and residence of groom
  • Name and residence of bride
  • Names of witnesses
  • Name of person officiating at marriage

Collection Content[edit | edit source]

Sample Images[edit | edit source]

Coverage Table[edit | edit source]

The table shows the number of records for each county in this collection as of 18 June 2016.

County Records
Aitkin 0
Anoka 28,387
Becker 0
Beltrami 0
Benton 0
Big Stone 0
Blue Earth 28,448
Brown 26,822
Carlton 0
Carver 31,579
Cass 0
Chippewa 0
Chisago 4
Clay 0
Clearwater 0
Cook 0
Cottonwood 4,311
Crow Wing 0
Dakota 14
Dodge 6,166
Douglas 1
Faribault 32,857
Fillmore 17,192
Freeborn 16,182
Goodhue 12,838
Grant 0
Hennepin 192,510
Houston 6,099
Hubbard 0
Isanti 2
Itasca 0
Jackson 3,626
Kanabec 5,046
Kandiyohi 5
Kittson 0
Koochiching 0
Lac qui Parle 0
Lake 0
Lake of the Woods 0
Le Sueur 7,406
Lincoln 2,535
Lyon 4,354
McLeod 2
Mahnomen 0
Marshall 0
Martin 55,318
Meeker 1
Mille Lacs 0
Morrison 2
Mower 18,249
Murray 0
Nicollet 5,312
Nobles 3,774
Norman 0
Olmsted 20,292
Otter Tail 0
Pennington 0
Pine 0
Pipestone 3,353
Polk 0
Pope 0
Ramsey 71,204
Red Lake 0
Redwood 4,887
Renville 0
Rice 12,308
Rock 17,066
Roseau 0
St. Louis 0
Scott 13,336
Sherburne 0
Sibley 51,929
Stearns 13,666
Steele 38,112
Stevens 0
Swift 0
Todd 0
Traverse 0
Wabasha 8,058
Wadena 9,575
Waseca 28,393
Washington 61,609
Watonwan 15,323
Wilkin 0
Winona 17,154
Wright 14
Yellow Medicine 0

Digital Folder Number List[edit | edit source]

This collection was published as a DGS browse collection. The list does not contain any description of the DGS folder's content. A table listing each DGS number and its contents can be found at Minnesota, County Marriages Digital Folder Number List.

How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

  • The name of your ancestor
  • The date of marriage
  • The place of marriage
  • The name of the intended spouse

Search the Index[edit | edit source]

Search by name on the Collection Details Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes in the Search Collection section with the information you know
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

View the Images[edit | edit source]

To view images in this collection:
  1. Look at the Digital Folder Number List article to determine the folder/film number for the images you want to see
  2. Go to the Browse Page
  3. Select the Film number to view the images

How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next?[edit | edit source]

When you have located your ancestor’s marriage record, carefully evaluate each piece of information about them. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors.

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Add any new information to your records
  • Use the marriage date and place as the basis for compiling a new family group or for verifying existing information
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth of each partner to find a couple's birth records and parents' names
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth to find the family in census records
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate church and land records
  • The name of the officiator is a clue to their religion or area of residence in the county. However, ministers may have reported marriages performed in other counties

I Can't Find the Person I'm Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Your ancestor may have used different names or variations of their name throughout their life
  • If your ancestor used an alias or a nickname, be sure to check for those alternate names
  • Even though these indexes are very accurate they may still contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned
  • Don't forget to check all variations of the ancestor's name
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct
  • Consult the Minnesota Record Finder to find other records

Research Helps[edit | edit source]

The following articles will help you in your research for your family in the state of Minnesota.

Known Issues[edit | edit source]

Click here for a list of known issues with this collection.

Citing This Collection[edit | edit source]

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation:
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.
Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation can be viewed by clicking the drop-down arrow next to Document Information.
Image Citation:
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.