Pennington County, Minnesota Genealogy

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

County Facts
County seat: Thief River Falls[1]
Organized: November 8, 1910[2]
Parent County(s): Red Lake [3]
Neighboring Counties
Beltrami  • Clearwater  • Marshall  • Polk  • Red Lake
See County Maps
Courthouse
Minnesota, Pennington County Courthouse.png
Location Map
Minnesota Pennington County Map.svg.png
Adoption

County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The County was named for Edmund Pennington, a longtime railroad operator. The County is located in the northwest area of the state.[4]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Pennington County Courthouse
141 Main Ave S
Thief River Falls, MN 56701
Phone: 218-684-7000
Pennington County Website

County Recorder has birth, marriage, death and burial, land and military records from 1910.
Court Administrator has divorce, probate and court records.[5]

Pennington County, Minnesota Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Information for this chart was taken from various sources, often containing conflicting dates. This information should be taken as a guide and should be verified by contacting the county and/or the state government agency.

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[6]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1910 1910 1910 1910 1880 1910 1836
*Statewide registration started for births in 1900 and deaths in 1908. General compliance by 1915.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.

Boundary Changes[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]

Cities
Unincorporated communities
  • Carpenters Corner
  • Dakota Junction
  • Erie
Townships


History Timeline[edit | edit source]

Resources[edit | edit source]

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Biographies[edit | edit source]

Business, Commerce, and Occupations[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries of Pennington County, Minnesota online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See Minnesota Cemeteries for more information.

 

Census Records[edit | edit source]

For links to Federal, State, and Territorial censuses, see Minnesota Census.

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1910 9,376
1920 12,091 29.0%
1930 10,487 −13.3%
1940 12,913 23.1%
1950 12,965 0.4%
1960 12,468 −3.8%
1970 13,266 6.4%
1980 15,258 15.0%
1990 13,306 −12.8%
2000 13,584 2.1%
2010 13,930 2.5%
Source: "Wikipedia.org".

State Census

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Most church records are held by individual churches. Some denominations are gathering their records into a central repository. For more information, see Minnesota Church Records.

Court Records[edit | edit source]

Directories[edit | edit source]

Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups[edit | edit source]

Funeral Homes[edit | edit source]

Genealogies[edit | edit source]

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]

The county register of deeds keeps land records once the land was transferred to private ownership. Abstracts and indexes for these records are generally available at the county courthouse.

Online Land Indexes and Records

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Local histories are available for Pennington County. County histories may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories, see the wiki page section Minnesota Local Histories.

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Marshall CountyBeltrami CountyClearwater CountyRed Lake CountyPolk CountyMN PENNINGTON.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Migration[edit | edit source]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Multiple Wars

Civil War

Spanish-American War

World War I

World War II

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Online Naturalization Indexes and Records

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Probate records may include wills, bonds, petitions, accounts, inventories, administrations, orders, decrees, and distributions. They may include the decedent’s date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, etc. See Minnesota Probate Records for additional information.

Online Probate Indexes and Records

School Records[edit | edit source]

Social Security Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

Since Minnesota tax records include only persons who owned taxable property, many residents were not included. Still they complement land records and can be used in place of missing censuses or the years between censuses. There may also be gaps. For more information, see the wiki page Minnesota Taxation.

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents.

A copy or an extract of most original records can be purchased from the Minnesota Department of Health, Office of Vital Records, or the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred. See also Minnesota Vital Records.

Birth[edit | edit source]

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Death[edit | edit source]

Divorce[edit | edit source]

Research Facilities[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]

Listed below are archives in Pennington County. For state-wide archival repositories, see Minnesota Archives and Libraries.

Family History Centers[edit | edit source]

Family History Center and Affiliate Library Locator map - search for local Family History Centers or Affiliate Libraries

  • 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 Affiliate Libraries

Libraries[edit | edit source]

Listed below are libraries in Pennington County. For state-wide library facilities, see Minnesota Archives and Libraries.

Thief River Falls Public Library
PO Box 674
102 First St E
Thief River Falls, MN 56701
218-681-4325
E-mail: trfcirc@gsuite.nwrlib.org
Website

Museums[edit | edit source]

Peder Engelstad Pioneer Village and the Inga Geving Museum
825 Oakland Park Rd
Thief River Falls, MN 56701
218-861-5767E-mail: pchsadmin@pchs.org
Website

Societies[edit | edit source]

Listed below are societies in Pennington County. For state-wide genealogical societies, see Minnesota Societies.

Pennington County Historical Society
PO Box 127
825 Oakland Park Rd
Thief River Falls, MN 56701
218-681-5767
Email: pchsadmin@pchs.org
Website

Goodridge Area Historical Society
Goodridge City Hall
21625 330th Avenue NE
Goodridge, MN 56725-8860
218-378-4385
Facebook

Websites[edit | edit source]

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Minnesota.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Minnesota.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. Minnesota Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library; accessed 2/21/2021.
  4. Wikipedia contributors, "Pennington County, Minnesota" in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pennington_County,_Minnesota accessed 14 Nov 2018
  5. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Minnesota.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  6. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Minnesota.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  7. Minnesota Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library; accessed 2/21/2021.
  8. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Minnesota.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  9. Wikipedia contributors, "Pennington County, Minnesota," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pennington_County%2C_Minnesota, accessed 15 February 2020.