Cedar County, Iowa

Genealogist Research Guide
to County Court Records

Submitted by Lynn McCleary, May 1, 2011

CEDAR COUNTY COURT HOUSE
400 Cedar Street
Tipton, IA 52772
Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Web site: http://www.cedarcounty.org/

RECORDERS' OFFICE ~ 2nd floor
(563) 886-2230

The office of the County Recorder will NOT answer any inquiry,
by phone or mail, pertaining to genealogical purposes.
One must walk-in and conduct the search themself.
For Research Services see Libraries & Societies.

VITAL RECORDS COPIES: For Genealogical Purposes are $1.00. Certified copies are $15.00

BIRTH

Registration of Births began at the State level, on July 1, 1880. At the time the law was loosely enforced. It wasn’t mandated until January 1, 1917, when births were to become certified to the clerk of the district court. Click HERE to view announcement of "New Law Makes It Necessary To File A Record".

When the Social Security program was enacted, many people had to apply for a “Delayed Birth Certificate”. Applicants had to show three documents that attested to the who, where and when of their births. Acceptable were affidavits by those who had personal knowledge about the applicant such as page from a Family Bible, First Grade enrollment in school, insurance policy, marriage license, military papers, voting records or census records.

The Cedar County Registrar will NOT HAVE:
          Adoptions - sealed
          Births between the years of 1921 - 1941
          Delayed Birth Certificates
          Record of Single parent births prior to July 1, 1995

For these records one must contact the Iowa Department of Public Health, Bureau of Health Statistics in Des Moines. Web site: http://www.idph.state.ia.us

MARRIAGE

Marriage Records in Cedar County begin 1839. This was because couples were required to purchase a marriage license. Earlier years only recorded name of Groom and Bride, the date they were married and who performed the ceremony. In later years more information about the couple was noted.

Indexed from 1839 to 1920 and 1941 to present.

For the years of 1921 – 1941 one must contact the Iowa Department of Public Health, Bureau of Health Statistics in Des Moines. Web site: http://www.idph.state.ia.us

DEATH

Death Records begin July 1, 1880. Some years only recorded name of the deceased, date of death and attending physician. Then other years offered more information. (If death occurred before 1880, try searching Probate Records at the County Clerks Office.)

Indexed from 1880 to 1920 and 1941 to present.

For the years of 1921 – 1941 one must contact the Iowa Department of Public Health, Bureau of Health Statistics in Des Moines.

REAL ESTATE DEEDS AND LAND TRANSFERS
Copies are $0.25 per page

Mortgage Agreements, Warranty Deeds, Quit Claim Deeds, Sheriff Sales, Assigning and Revocations of Agents to manage the Land, Leases and more.

CEDAR COUNTY GENERAL INDEX OF LOTS - begins about 1839. Included is property located within the city limits of Bennett, Clarence, Durant, Lowden, Mechanicsville, Stanwood, Tipton, West Branch.

CEDAR COUNTY INDEX TO LANDS - begins about 1838. Includes real estate transactions throughout the county.

Both indexes sort transactions by first letter of the Surname of the Grantor [person(s) selling land] and Grantee [person(s) buying it]
          Date of file (at county level)
          Date of Instrument (date transaction actually occurred)
          Transaction Type:
          The Volume Title and Page(s) where recorded
          A brief description of the location and size of the land (Example: East 2/3, Lot 4 in Block 30, City of Tipton)

BOOK OF ORIGINAL LAND GRANTS

This book records transactions where the U.S. Government (agents) was the Grantor. Some early settlers walked into the Land Office and made a purchase. For others, they were given a tract of land in payment for their service in the United States Armed Forces.

These Land Grants transactions are indexed by location ie. Range and Township.

These records may be found on-line by going to The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) at http://www.glorecords.blm.gov/search/default.aspx

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CEDAR COUNTY AUDITOR OFFICE ~ 1st floor
563-886-3168

MINUTE BOOKS OF COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

PLAT MAPS

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CEDAR COUNTY CLERK OFFICE ~ 2nd floor
563-886-2101

Please note that the office of the County Clerk will NOT answer any inquiry, by phone or mail, pertaining to genealogical purposes. One must walk-in and conduct the search themself.

CIVIL AND CRIMINAL COURT CASE RECORDS

DIVORCE RECORDS - Divorce decree was filed with the county clerk in the county where the divorce was granted. They were not filed at the State level until 1906.

Indexed - Sorted by Surname of Husband. Information includes:
          Case Number
          Name of Husband & Age
          Marriage Date & Place
          Grounds of Divorce
          Name of Wife & Age
          Date of Divorce Decree
          Number of times married
          Number of dependent children

PROBATE, WILLS AND GUARDIANSHIP RECORDS

Records begin about 1839 and there is an index.

For genealogists, Probate records are a great way to narrow in on a death date, especially if it occurred before 1880. At time of death if someone had any $$$ in their holdings, their Estate would be appraised through Probate and their Heirs taxed. Holdings would include household items, house, land, livestock, vehicles, bank accounts etc. Names of the heirs and their addresses may also be found.

NATURALIZATION RECORDS

Petitions for Citizenship and Oaths of Allegiance. Records begin about 1840 and there is an index.


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