Mississippi County records differ widely from county to county in either quality as well as quantity. Some have already been carefully maintained while others have been much mistreated and uncared for. A certain amount of Mississippi records have purely vanished. For genealogists doing research in Mississippi there is no valuable replace to have an on-site search of county court house records.
A large collection of county records from Mississippi can be found at the Mississippi Department of Archives and History on microfilm. However, it is not a complete collection. The FHL can also provide copies of those records on microfilm. However, the various courthouses in each county should still be consulted, since some records may not have been moved to the archives yet. Many of those records, including probate records and marriage licenses, can contain genealogical data.
Researchers should note that marriage records for both African Americans and white people can be found at the chancery clerk’s office at the county courthouse in each county, along with probate records and deeds.
Deeds, probate records, and divorces may be found at the chancery clerk at the county courthouse. Microfilmed marriage books for both whites and blacks are indicated, in that order, under “Marriages” and can be found in the county Clerk of Circuit Court. Court records may be found in the appropriate clerk’s office at the courthouse. See also a list of links to county and county seat government run websites.
List of Mississippi Counties
|County||Date Formed||Parent County||County Seat|
|Adams||1799||One of two original counties||Natchez|
|Alcorn||1870||Tippiah and Tishomingo Counties||Corinth|
|Benton||1870||Marshall and Tippah Counties||Ashland|
|Bolivar||1836||Tallahatchie and Washington Counties||Cleveland and Rosedale|
|Calhoun||1852||Chickasaw, Lafayette and Yalobusha Counties||Pittsboro|
|Carroll||1833||Lowndes, Monroe, Washington and Yazoo Counties||Carrollton and Vaiden|
|Chickasaw||1836||Monroe County and Un-Organized||Houston|
|Choctaw||1833||Lowndes, Madison, Monroe and Yazoo Counties||Ackerman|
|Claiborne||1802||Jefferson (Pickering) County||Port Gibson|
|Clay||1871||Chickasaw, Lowndes, Monroe and Oktibbeha Counties (formerly (Colfax County)||West Point|
|Copiah||1823||Franklin and Hinds Counties||Hazlehurst|
|Covington||1819||Lawrence and Wayne Counties||Collins|
|Desoto||1836||Monroe and Washington Counties||Hernando|
|George||1910||Greene and Jackson Counties||Lucedale|
|Grenada||1870||Carroll, Choctaw, Tallahatchie and Yalobusha Counties||Grenada|
|Hancock||1812||Un-Organized||Bay Saint Louis|
|Harrison||1841||Hancock County||Gulfport and Biloxi|
|Hinds||1821||Un-Organized (Choctaw Cession of 1820)||Jackson and Raymond|
|Humphreys||1918||Holmes, Sunflower, Washington and Yazoo Counties||Belzoni|
|Jasper||1833||Jones and Wayne Counties||Bay Springs|
|Jefferson||1799||One of two original Counties (formerly Pickering)||Fayette|
|Jeffrson Davis||1906||Covington and Lawrence Counties||Prentiss|
|Jones||1826||Covington and Wayne Counties (formerly Davis (1865-1869 (Civil War))||Laurel|
|Kemper||1833||Lowndes, Rankin and Wayne Counties||De Kalb|
|Lamar||1904||Marion and Pearl River Counties||Purvis|
|Lauderdale||1833||Rankin and Wayne Counties||Meridian|
|Leake||1833||Madison and Rankin Counties||Carthage|
|Lee||1866||Itawamba and Pontotoc Counties||Tupelo|
|Leflore||1871||Carroll and Sunflower Counties||Greenwood|
|Lincoln||1870||Amite, Copiah, Franklin, Lawrence and Pike Counties||Brookhaven|
|Lowndes||1830||Monroe County and Un-Organized||Columbus|
|Marion||1811||Amite, Franklin and Wayne Counties||Columbia|
|Marshall||1836||Monroe County||Holly Springs|
|Monroe||1821||Un-Organized (Chickasaw Cession of 1816)||Aberdeen|
|Montgomery||1871||Carroll and Choctaw Counties||Winona|
|Neshoba||1833||Jones, Madison, Rankin and Wayne Counties||Philadelphia|
|Noxubee||1833||Lowndes and Rankin Counties||Macon|
|Panola||1836||Monroe and Washington Counties||Batesville|
|Pearl River||1890||Hancock and Marion Counties||Poplarville|
|Perry||1820||Greene County||New Augusta|
|Prentiss||1870||Itawamba and Tishomingo Counties||Booneville|
|Quitman||1877||Coahoma, Panola, Tallahatchie and Tunica Counties||Marks|
|Scott||1833||Covington, Jones and Rankin Counties||Forest|
|Sharkey||1876||Issaquena, Warren and Washington Counties||Rolling Fork|
|Smith||1833||Covington, Jones and Rankin Counties||Raleigh|
|Tallahatchie||1833||Washington and Yazoo Counties||Charleston|
|Tate||1873||DeSoto and Marshall Counties||Senatobia|
|Tunica||1836||Washington County and Un-Organized||Tunica|
|Union||1870||Lee, Pontotoc and Tippah Counties||New Albany|
|Walthall||1912||Marion and Pike Counties||Tylertown|
|Washington||1827||Warren and Yazoo Counties||Greenville|
|Wayne||1809||Washington County (AL)||Waynesboro|
|Webster||1874||Chickasaw, Choctaw and Montegomery Counties (formerly Sumner County)||Walthall|
|Winston||1833||Lowndes, Rankin, and Wayne Counties||Louisville|
|Yalobusha||1833||Monroe, Washington and Yazoo Counties||Water Valley|
|Yazoo||1823||Hinds County||Yazoo City|
List of Mississippi Extinct Counties
Mississippi contains counties that no longer exist. They were organized by the state, provincial, or territorial governing administration. Most of these counties were established and disbanded in the Nineteenth century; county borders have changed little since 1900 in the vast majority of states. These counties needs to be considered when you are performing family history and genealogy research. Pay close attention where the courthouse records went to if the county was abolished or consolidated with another county.
- Bainbridge County: Formed from Lawrence County and Wayne County renamed Covington County
- Bourbon County: Organized by Georgia in 1785 out of disputed Yazoo lands in present day Mississippi; dissolved in 1788.
- Colfax County: Formed in 1871, renamed Clay County in 1876
- Davis County: Originally called Jones Co; name changed to Davis Co. in 1865; name changed back to Jones Co. in 1869
- Pickering County: Formed in 1799 from the Natchez District , renamed Jefferson County in 1802
- Pearl County: 1872-1878, later reformed as Pearl River County, Mississippi
- Sumner County: Formed in 1874 from Montgomery County and Choctaw County , renamed Webster County in 1882
List of Mississippi Counties with Burned Courthouses
The harm to Mississippi courthouses tremendously has a effect on family historians in almost every way. Not only are these historic structures torn from each of our lifetimes, so are the archives they kept: marriage, wills, probate, land records, as well as others. Once destroyed they are lost forever. Despite the fact that they happen to have been placed on mircofilm, computers and film burn too. The most tragic side of this is the reason why almost all of our courthouses are destroyed as a result of arsonist. Though, don’t assume all records were destroyed. Many Mississippi counties have dealt with a loss of records due to courthouse fires, floods, and theft.
- Alcorn County Courthouse – Corinth – Record Loss in 1917
- Attala County Courthouse – Kosciusko – 1858, 1860 and 1896
- Bolivar County Courthouse – Rosedale and Cleveland – Fire in 1863, Flood in 1865
- Calhoun County Courthouse – Pittsboro – Fire in 1922
- Chickasaw County Courthouse – Houston – Fire in 1863
- Choctaw County Courthouse – Ackerman – Fire 1874, 1888
- Covington County Courthouse – Collins – Record loss in 1904
- Desoto County Courthouse – Hernando – Record loss in 1940
- Franklin County Courthouse – Meadville – Fire in 1877
- Greene County Courthouse – Leakesville – Fire in 1875
- Holmes County Courthouse – A courthouse fire in 1884 destroyed many of the records, but the deeds were housed in a separate building and Will Book I was rescued.
- Jackson County Courthouse – Pascagoula – Fire in 1875
- Jefferson County Courthouse – Fayette – Record loss in 1904, Fire in 1990
- Jones County Courthouse – Laurel and Ellisville – Unknown Date
- Kemper County Courthouse – DeKalb – Fire in 1882
- Lee County Courthouse – Tupelo – Fire in 1873 & 1904
- Lincoln County Courthouse – Brookhaven – Unknown 1893
- Montgomery County Courthouse – Winona – Record loss, 1903.
- Newton County Courthouse – Decatur – Record loss, 1877 and 1910.
- Oktibbeha County Courthouse – Starkville – Record loss, 1880.
- Panola County Courthouse – Sardis – Record loss, 1886
- Perry County Courthouse – New Augusta – Record loss, 1877
- Pike County Courthouse – Magnolia – Record loss, 1882
- Prentiss County Courthouse – Booneville – Record loss, 1912.
- Simpson County Courthouse – Mendenhall – Record loss, 1840, 1872
- Smith County Courthouse – Raleigh – Record loss, 1892, 1915
- Sunflower County Courthouse – Indianola – Record loss, 1870.
- Tallahatchie County Courthouse – Charleston/Sumner – Record loss at Sumner, 1908
- Tippah County Courthouse – Ripley – Record loss, 1863
- Union County Courthouse – New Albany – Record loss, 1882
- Wayne County Courthouse – Waynesboro – Record loss, 1892