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Minnesota Genealogy and Family History Research

A guide to Minnesota genealogy and family history records such as, birth and death records, marriage records, land and census records, military records, family pedigrees, and much more.

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Minnesota River
Welcome to
Welcome to
The land of "clear blue water" 
The land of "clear blue water" [1]
Kittson CountyRoseau CountyLake of the Woods CountyMarshall CountyBeltrami CountyPolk CountyPennington CountyRed Lake CountyClearwater CountyNorman CountyMahnomen CountyClay CountyBecker CountyHubbard CountyKoochiching CountySt. Louis CountyLake CountyCook CountyItasca CountyCass CountyCarlton CountyWilkin CountyOtter Tail CountyWadena CountyCrow Wing CountyAitkin CountyPine CountyTraverse CountyGrant CountyDouglas CountyTodd CountyMorrison CountyMille Lacs CountyKanabec CountyBig Stone CountyStevens CountyPope CountyStearns CountyBenton CountySherburne CountyIsanti CountyChisago CountyAnoka CountyWashington CountyRamsey CountySwift CountyKandiyohi CountyChippewa CountyRenville CountyMeeker CountyWright CountyHennepin CountyMcLeaod CountySibley CountyCarver CountyNicollet CountyScott CountyDakota CountyLac qui Parle CountyYellow Medicine CountyLincoln CountyLyon CountyRedwood CountyBrown CountyBlue Earth CountyLe Sueur CountyRice CountyGoodhue CountyWabasha CountyWinona CountyHouston CountyPipestone CountyRock CountyMurray CountyNobles CountyCottonwood CountyJackson CountyWatonwan CountyMartin CountyFaribault CountyWaseca CountySteele CountyFreeborn CountyDodge CountyOlmsted CountyMower CountyFillmore CountyMinnesota-county-map.gif
Minnesota River near Granite Falls, MN.
Records research
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the Research Wiki can also help locate:
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Research tools
 • Midwest Research videos: #1, #2, & #3
 • Where to look for the right records
 • Check state and county boundaries
Newberry Library [2] or
 • Explore MN & USA migration patterns

 • See all of the Minnesota wiki pages.

Research help
List of Counties
Extinct or Renamed Counties:
State capital of Minnesota in St. Paul
Fort Snelling in 1843
Duluth, Minnesota near Lake Superior
Saint Paul Cathedral in St. Paul, Minnesota
Duluth Lake Superior

Minnesota's most unique Genealogical feature

Minnesota was formerly claimed by France, Spain, the United Kingdom, Quebec, unorganized U.S., Northwest, Indiana, Louisiana, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, Iowa, and Wisconsin territories.[4]

Lost relatives?

By studying the Minnesota population migration patterns using the railroads, Mississippi and Minnesota River travel, ship travel across the Great Lakes, entry to the US from Canada via the Red River, the westward expansion across the St._Croix_River from Wisconsin and early trails and roads in combination with known immigration settlements for various nationalities it may be possible to pin down areas within the state where they may have traveled. Travel through or beyond the state can also be aided by using the railroad migration routes which headed westward during the 1800s.

Did you know?

The largest ethnic groups in Minnesota are Germans, Swedes, and Norwegians. By 1880 the foreign-born population in Minnesota included nearly 108,000 Scandinavians, many of whom were Norwegians; 66,000 Germans; and about 39,000 British, most of whom were Irish. Nearly 30,000 Minnesotans had come from Canada, most of whom were British and French Canadians. There were nearly 8,000 Bohemians (mostly Czechs) and 1,000 or 2,000 each from Switzerland, Poland, Russia, and France.

Duluth, Minnesota near Lake Superior
Saint Paul Cathedral in St. Paul, Minnesota
State capital of Minnesota in St. Paul
Minnesota River
Fort Snelling in 1843
Ojibwa Indian Chief
  1. The name Minnesota comes from the Dakota word (Mnisota) which translates to "clear blue water" or "clouded blue water" (referring to the reflection of the clouds). "Mnisota" Dakota Dictionary Online. 2010. (September 7, 2013).
  2. [http://historical-county./website/Minnesota/viewer.htm Minnesota Atlas of Historical County Boundaries, John H. Long, Editor; Peggy Tuck Sinko, Associate Editor; Gordon DenBoer, Historical Compiler; Douglas Knox, Book Digitizing Director and Digital Compiler; Emily Kelley, Research Associate; Laura Rico-Beck, GIS Specialist; Peter Siczewicz, ArcIMS Interactive Map Designer; Robert Will, Cartographic Assistant. Copyright The Newberry Library 2008.
  3. St. Croix County covered much of north eastern Minnesota in 1840 and is now an existing county in western Wisconsin. See St. Croix County
  4. Alice Eichholz, ed. Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources. 3rd ed (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 2004), 350. (FHL Collection 973 D27rb 2004). WorldCat entry.
State of Minnesota
United States flag
Minnesota flag.png
Land of 10,000 Lakes
North Star State
The Gopher State
Origin of the Mississippi River Rivers and Lakes.png
Motto(s): L'Étoile du Nord
(French: The Star of the North)
Minnesota Seal 1858-1971
Minnesota flag.png
Demonym: Minnesotan
State Capital:
Saint Paul, since 1849

Largest cities:
1st - Minneapolis
2nd - Saint Paul
3rd - Rochester
4th - Duluth

Note: ~60% of the State's population lives in the Twin Cities Metro area
Ranked 21st
5,420,380 (2013 est)
Before statehood:
Minnesota Territory
Admission to Union:
May 11, 1858 (32nd)
Time zone: Central: UTC −6/−5
(UTC: Universal Time Coordinated)
Tuesday, 10:18  (UTC)
MN, Minn. US-MN
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