Meade County, South Dakota Genealogy
Guide to Meade County, South Dakota ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.
- 1 County Information
- 2 Resources
- 2.1 Bible Records
- 2.2 Biographies
- 2.3 Business, Commerce, and Occupations
- 2.4 Cemeteries
- 2.5 Census Records
- 2.6 Church Records
- 2.7 Court Records
- 2.8 Directories
- 2.9 Emigration and Immigration
- 2.10 Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups
- 2.11 Funeral Homes
- 2.12 Genealogies
- 2.13 Guardianship
- 2.14 Land and Property Records
- 2.15 Local Histories
- 2.16 Maps and Gazetteers
- 2.17 Migration
- 2.18 Military Records
- 2.19 Naturalization and Citizenship
- 2.20 Newspapers
- 2.21 Obituaries
- 2.22 Other Records
- 2.23 Periodicals
- 2.24 Probate Records
- 2.25 School Records
- 2.26 Social Security Records
- 2.27 Tax Records
- 2.28 Vital Records
- 3 Research Facilities
- 4 Societies
- 5 Websites
- 6 Research Guides
- 7 References
The county is named after Fort Meade, which was garrisoned as a United States military post in the area in 1878 and was named for General George Meade. It is located in the western area of the state.
Meade County Courthouse
1425 Sherman Street; PO Box 939
Sturgis, SD 57785
Register of Deeds has marriage (as early as 1905) and land records and land records;
Clerk Court has probate and court records.
Meade County, South Dakota Record Dates
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.
Compliance for recording births was 1906 and 1932 for deaths.
There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.
The following are locations in the county
Business, Commerce, and Occupations
Before South Dakota was a state in 1889, parts of South Dakota were included in the 1836 Iowa Territory census (also known as Wisconsin Territory), 1840 Iowa Territory census, 1850 Minnesota Territory census, and the 1860-1880 Dakota Territory censuses. See links listed below.
Territory and State Census Records
- 1836 - 1836 Wisconsin Territory Census – index only; South Dakota was included in the 1836 Wisconsin Territory Census
- 1840 - United States Census, 1840 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images - How to Use this Collection; South Dakota was included in the 1840 Iowa Territory Census
- 1850 - United States Census, 1850 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images - How to Use this Collection; South Dakota was included in the 1850 Minnesota Territory Census
- 1860 - United States Census, 1860 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images - How to Use this Collection; South Dakota was included in the 1860 Dakota Territory Census
- 1870 - United States Census, 1870 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images - How to Use this Collection; South Dakota was included in the 1870 Dakota Territory Census
- 1880 - United States Census, 1880 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images - How to Use this Collection; South Dakota was included in the 1880 Dakota Territory Census
- 1885 - South Dakota, Territorial Census, 1885 at Ancestry — ($); index and images
- 1895 - South Dakota, State Census, 1895 at Ancestry — ($); index and images
- 1905 - South Dakota State Census, 1905 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images - How to Use this Collection
- 1915 - South Dakota State Census, 1915 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images - How to Use this Collection
- 1925 - South Dakota State Census, 1925 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images - How to Use this Collection
- 1935 - South Dakota State Census, 1935 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images - How to Use this Collection
- 1945 - South Dakota State Census, 1945 at FamilySearch Historical Records — index and images - How to Use this Collection
Federal Census Records
Federal Censuses were taken for the state of South Dakota starting in 1890, although only one page survived. The 1900 Census is the next Federal Census available. For links to Federal census indexes, see South Dakota Census.
Church records vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. They may contain information about members of the congregation, such as age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information and maiden names; and death date. For general information about South Dakota denominations, view the South Dakota Church Records wiki page.
Online Church Records
- 1875-1940 - U.S., Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, Records, 1875-1940 at Ancestry — ($); Index and images; Dates vary for each county
- 1701-1970 - U.S., Presbyterian Records, 1701-1970 at Ancestry — ($); Index and images; Dates vary for each county
List of Churches and Church Parishes
Emigration and Immigration
Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups
Land and Property Records
Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents.
See South Dakota Land and Property for additional information about early South Dakota land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse, where records are currently housed.
Online Land Records
- Land Patent Search - index to federal patents and homesteads on the Bureau of Land Management website, some images available
- 1796 - 1907 - U.S. General Land Office Records, 1796-1907 at Ancestry - index, info taken from Bureau of Land Management website
- 1863 - 1908 - U.S. Homestead Records 1863-1908 at Ancestry.com - ($), index and images
Local histories are available for Meade County, South Dakota Genealogy. County and town histories may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories, see the wiki page section South Dakota Local Histories.
- Central Meade County, South Dakota, 1903-1963. 1964. By Ella Wahl. Stoneville, South Dakota : Stoneville Steadies Extension Club. Online at: ; At various libraries (WorldCat).
- Mato Paha - land of the pioneers : northwest Meade County, South Dakota. 1969. [S.l.] : Alkali Community Club. At various libraries (WorldCat).
Maps and Gazetteers
- FamilySearch Places:Cities and Towns- How to Use FS Places
- Interactive Formation Boundary Map of South Dakota - shows boundary changes for South Dakota Counties
- Historical Maps and Atlases of South Dakota - maps and atlases of South Dakota
- 1861 - 1941 South Dakota, Grand Army of the Republic Membership Records, 1861-1941 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
- 1940 - 1941 South Dakota, Veteran Graves Registration Records, 1940-1941 at FamilySearch — index and images - How to Use this Collection
- 1861 - 1865 Dakota Territory Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, 1861-1865 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection.
- 1885 Civil War Veteran's 1885 Census in South Dakota - Index only, Union and Confederate included
- 1890 United States Census of Union Veterans and Widows of the Civil War, 1890 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection.
World War I
World War II
For further information see South Dakota Military Records.
Naturalization and Citizenship
- 1904 - 1928 South Dakota, Federal Naturalization Records, 1904-1928 at Ancestry — index and images ($)
- 1865 - 1972 South Dakota County Naturalization Records, 1865-1972 at FamilySearch — images - How to Use this Collection
- South Dakota Naturalization Records Index:First Papers — index
- South Dakota Naturalization Records Index:Second Papers — index
- Name Index to Naturalization Records from Dakota Territory and South Dakota at National Archives, Kansas City — index
For more information, see South Dakota Newspapers.
South Dakota Newspapers Online
- GenealogyBank - ($), contains images of South Dakota newspapers
- Newspaper Archive - ($), contains images of South Dakota newspapers
- Chronicling America - contains images of some South Dakota newspapers; searching tips
- Elephind - Free; search engine that retrieves newspaper images from other free newspaper websites
South Dakota Newspaper Catalogs
- U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690-Present on Chronicling America - contains a list of all known newspapers and the dates they cover; once you locate a newspaper name, contact the local library to see if they have copies of the newspaper.
In most counties in South Dakota, probate records have been kept by the county judge. They include wills, fee books, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, probate ticklers, and dockets. The records are available at the county courthouse.
The FamilySearch Catalog lists films of probate records. To find the records for this county, use the Place Search for South Dakota, Meade then click Probate records.
- 1800 – 1985 North Dakota and South Dakota Wills and Probate Records 1800-1985 at Ancestry.com — index and images $
- 1879 - 1970 South Dakota, School Records, 1879-1970 at FamilySearch — index and images - How to Use this Collection
- 1879 - 1970 South Dakota, School Records,1879-1970 at Ancestry — images
Social Security Records
- 1935-2014 United States Social Security Death Index at FamilySearch - How to use this collection; index. Also at Ancestry, findmypast, Fold3, GenealogyBank, MyHeritage, and Steve Morse. Click here for more information.
- 1936-2007 U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 at Ancestry ($) — index, click here for more information.
South Dakota tax records complement land records and can be used to supplement the years between censuses. There may be gaps of several years in the records.
Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents. See the CDC Where to Write website for information on acquiring copies of these records.
- 1843 - 1914 South Dakota, Department of Health, Index to Births 1843-1914 and Marriages 1950-2014 at FamilySearch — index - How to Use this Collection
- 1856 - 1950 South Dakota, Birth Index, 1856-1915 at Ancestry — index ($)
- Birth Record Search Site For South Dakota Birth Records With Birth Dates Over 100 Years — index
- 1950 - 2014 South Dakota, Department of Health, Index to Births 1843-1914 and Marriages 1950-014 — index - How to Use this Collection
- 1905 - 2013 South Dakota, Marriages, 1905-2013 at Ancestry — index and images ($)
Listed below are archives in Meade County. For state-wide archival repositories, see South Dakota Archives and Libraries.
Family History Centers
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
Listed below are societies in Meade County. For state-wide genealogical societies, see South Dakota Societies.
- Meade County SDGenWeb
- USGenWeb project. May have maps, name indexes, history or other information for this county. Select the state, then the county.
- FamilySearch Catalog
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meade_County,_South_Dakota accessed 1/31/2017
- http://genealogytrails.com/sdak/meade/ accessed 1/31/2017
- South Dakota Department of Health, “Meade County Resources”, http://doh.sd.gov/records/county/meade.aspx/ accessed 21 June 2017.
- The Handybook for Genealogists : United States of America, 10th ed., (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002)Meade County, South Dakota, p.626
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Meade County, South Dakota. Page 626 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), 622.
- Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Rev. ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 1992), 671; Alice M. Hetzel, U.S. Vital Statistics System: Major Activities and Developments, 1950-95 (Hyattsville, Md.: U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics, ), 58.
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Wikipedia contributors, "Meade County, South Dakota," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meade_County%2C_South_Dakota accessed 6 November 2016.
- ’'Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), 617. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.