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

County Facts
County seat: Independence
Organized: December 21, 1837
Parent County(s): Dubuque
Neighboring Counties
Benton  • Black Hawk  • Bremer  • Clayton  • Delaware  • Fayette  • Linn
See County Maps
Courthouse
Iowa, Buchanan County Courthouse.png
Location Map
Iowa Buchanan Map.png
Adoption

County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The County was named for US president James Buchanan. The County has Independence as its seat and the County was created 1837. The County is located in the northeast area of the state.[1]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Clerk District Court has Birth and Death Records from 1880, Marriage Records from 1848, Divorce, Probate and Clerk Records from 1845.

Buchanan County, Iowa 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[2]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1880 1848 1880 1845 1846 1845 1847
* Statewide registration started for births in July 1880 and for deaths Jan 1891. General compliance by 1924.

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:[4]

Cities
Unincorporated communities
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 Buchanan County, Iowa online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See Iowa Cemeteries for more information.

 

Census Records[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1850 517
1860 7,906 1429.2%
1870 17,034 115.5%
1880 18,546 8.9%
1890 18,997 2.4%
1900 21,427 12.8%
1910 19,748 −7.8%
1920 19,890 0.7%
1930 19,550 −1.7%
1940 20,991 7.4%
1950 21,927 4.5%
1960 22,293 1.7%
1970 21,746 −2.5%
1980 22,900 5.3%
1990 20,844 −9.0%
2000 21,093 1.2%
2010 20,958 −0.6%
Source: "Wikipedia.org".

Iowa recorded not only the federal census but state census through out the years too. The state census contains very valuable genealogical information. Where the census information can be found, what years it was taken, mortality schedules, census substitutions and much more is discussed in the very informative Iowa Census article.

United States Census

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 about these major repositories, see Iowa Church Records.

United Methodist

  • Iowa Churches: A File at the Iowa Wesleyan College in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa. Films 31 films arranged by towns or by the name of the church. Value: history and names of early members.
  • Ministerial Biographies: A File in the Iowa Wesleyan College in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa. Films 25 films

Lutheran
Aurora

  • Records of the American Lutheran Church, Aurora, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).

Independence

  • Records of the American Lutheran Church, Independence, in Evangelical Lutheran Church in America database at Archives.com ($).

Court Records[edit | edit source]

  • Many Court records for Buchanan County have been microfilmed or abstracted. Some of those copies are available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. For a listing of their holdings, see the topic detailsfrom their catalog.
  • Many Guardianship records for Buchanan County have been microfilmed or abstracted. Some of those copies are available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. For a listing of their holdings, see the topic details from their catalog.

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]

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. They include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents.

See Iowa Land and Property for information about early Iowa land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, transactions were usually recorded and housed at the county courthouse.

  • Many Plat Book records for Buchanan County have been microfilmed or abstracted. Some of those copies are available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. For a listing of their holdings, see the topic details from their catalog.
  • Many Land and Property records for Buchanan County have been microfilmed or abstracted. Some of those copies are available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. For a listing of their holdings, see the topic details from their catalog.

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Local histories are available for Buchanan County, which may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories, see Iowa Local Histories.

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Bremer CountyFayette CountyClayton CountyDelaware CountyLinn CountyBenton CountyBlack Hawk CountyIA BUCHANAN.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Migration[edit | edit source]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Civil War
Civil War service men in this county served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in

- 4th Regiment, Iowa Cavalry, Company B
- 5th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company E
- 6th Regiment, Iowa Cavalry, Company G
- 27th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Companies C and H
- 47th Regiment, Iowa Infantry (100 days, 1864), Company D
- 27th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company C
:- 27th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company H
:- 47th Regiment, Iowa Infantry (100 days, 1864), Company D
:- 4th Regiment, Iowa Cavalry,
:- 5th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company E
:- 6th Regiment, Iowa Cavalry, Company G

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

  • NewspaperArchive.com ($) has historical newspapers online including Cedar Rapids newspapers and Waterloo newspapers that may have included Buchanan County residents. This database is free at some libraries.
  • Bulletin Journal. 1947, 1955, 1962, 1966 Independence, IA, USA Online at: Ancestry($)
  • Winthrop News. 1957 Winthrop, IA, USA Online at: Ancestry($)

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Burials
WPA 1930's Graves Registration Survey

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Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

In most counties in Iowa, 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.

  • 1758-1997 Iowa, U.S., Wills and Probate Records, 1758-1997 at Ancestry — ($)
  • Many Probate records for Buchanan County have been microfilmed or abstracted. Some of those copies are available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. For a listing of their holdings, see the topic details from their catalog..

School Records[edit | edit source]

Social Security Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

Iowa tax records complement land records and can supplement the years between censuses. Iowa's unique Old Age Assistance tax gives names, addresses and birth years. There may be gaps of several years. For more information, see the wiki page Iowa Taxation.

Many Taxation records for Buchanan County have been microfilmed or abstracted. Some of those copies are available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. For a listing of their holdings, see the topic details from their catalog.

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Vital Records consist of births, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded by civil officials on registers, certificates, and other documents. Copies or extracts may be purchased from the Iowa Department of Public Health or the County Clerk's office. See also Iowa 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]

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 Affiliate Libraries

Libraries[edit | edit source]

Buchanan County Genealogical Society
103 4th Ave. SE
Independence, IA 50644
Telephone:319-334-9333
E-mail: buchanancoia@yahoo.com
Website
Buchanan County Iowa Historical Society
P.O. Box 321
Independence, Iowa 50644
Telephone:319-334-4616
E-mail: bchs.lkh@gmail.com
Website
Independence Public Library
805 1st Street East
Independence, IA 50644
Telephone:319-334-2470
E-mail: indylib@indytel.com
Website

Museums[edit | edit source]

Societies[edit | edit source]

Websites[edit | edit source]

  • FamilySearch Catalog – The FamilySearch catalog contains descriptions and access information for all genealogical materials (including books, online materials, microfilm, microfiche, and publications) in their collection.  Use Historical Records to search for specific individuals in genealogical records.

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Wikipedia contributors, "Buchanan, Iowa," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buchanan_County,_Iowa.
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Iowa.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Iowa.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  4. Wikipedia contributors, "Buchanan County, Iowa," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buchanan_County,_Iowa, accessed 24 August 2019.