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Oklahoma Counties and Historical Facts


Oklahoma County records vary widely from county to county both in quality as well as quantity. Some are already very carefully preserved while others have been much abused and mistreated. Some Oklahoma records have merely vanished. For genealogists carrying out research in Oklahoma there’s no effective substitute for an on-site search of county court house records. For Definitions of all court terms see the Genealogy Encyclopedia

Oklahoma originally had seven counties when it was first organized as the Oklahoma Territory. These counties were designated numerically, first through seventh. New counties added after this were designated by letters of the alphabet. The first seven counties were later renamed. The Oklahoma Constitutional Convention named all of the counties that were formed when Oklahoma entered statehood in 1907. Only two counties have been formed since then.

Oklahoma is divided into 77 counties. Oklahoma deeds, probates, and civil court records are located at the county clerk’s or clerk of the courts office. Marriage records before statewide recording may be found at the county clerk as well, but records of births and deaths are not available until statewide recording began. Official certificates come from the State Department of Health. The largest percentage of Oklahoma’s extant public records were generated in the twentieth century and are generally intact. Send inquiries to the county official at the courthouse address for the appropriate county. See also a list of links to county and county seat government run websites.

List of Oklahoma Counties

CountyDate FormedParent CountyCounty Seat
Adair1907Cherokee LandsStilwell
Alfalfa1907Woods CountyCherokee
Atoka1907Choctaw LandsAtoka
Beaver1890Oklahoma TerritoryBeaver
Beckham1907Roger Mills CountySayre
Blaine1892Cheyenne, Arapaho landWatonga
Bryan1907Choctaw LandsDurant
Caddo 1901Kowa, Comanche,Apache, Wichita, Caddo landsAnadarko
Canadian1890Oklahoma TerritoryEl Reno
Carter1907Chickasaw landsArdmore
Cherokee1907Tahlequah DistrictTahlequah
Choctaw1907Choctaw landsHugo
Cimarron1907Beaver CountyBoise City
Cleveland1890Oklahoma TerritoryNorman
Coal1907Choctaw landsCoalgate
Comanche 1901Kiowa County, Comanche landsLawton
Cotton1912Comanche CountyWalters
Craig1907Cherokee landsVinita
Creek1907Creek landsSapulpa
Custer1892Cheyenne & Arapaho land openingArapaho
Dewey1892Cheyenne & Arapaho land openingTaloga
Ellis1907Day, WoodwardArnett
Garfield1893Cherokee Outlet landEnid
Garvin1907Chickasaw landsPauls Valley
Grady1907Caddo, Comanche landsChickasha
Grant1893Cherokee OutletlandMedford
Greer1886Cherokee landsMangum
Harmon1909Greer, JacksonHollis
Harper1907Indian lands, Woods, WoodwardBuffalo
Haskell1907Choctaw landsStigler
Hughes1907Creek landsHoldenville
Jackson1907Greer CountyAltus
Jefferson1907Comanche, Chickasaw landsWaurika
Johnston1907Chickasaw landsTishomingo
Kay1893Cherokee Outlet landNewkirk
Kingfisher1890Oklahoma TerritoryKingfisher
Kiowa1901Kiowa, Comanche, Apache, Wichita, Caddo landsHobart
Latimer1907Choctaw landsWilburton
Le Flore1907Choctaw landsPoteau
Lincoln1893Oklahoma TerritoryChandler
Logan1890Oklahoma TerritoryGuthrie
Love1907Chickasaw TerritoryMarietta
Major1907Woods CountyFairview
Marshall1907Chickasaw landsMadill
Mayes1907Cherokee landsPryor
McClain1907Chickasaw landsPurcell
McCurtain1907Choctaw landsIdabel
McIntosh1907Creek lansEufaula
Murray1907Chickasaw landsSulphur
Muskogee1907Creek landsMuskogee
Noble1893Cherokee Outlet landPerry
Nowata1907Cherokee landsNowata
Okfuskee1907Creek landsOkemah
Oklahoma1890Oklahoma TerritoryOklahoma City
Okmulgee1907Creek landsOkmulgee
Osage1907Osage landsPawhuska
Ottawa1907Cherokee NationMiami
Pawnee1893Cherokee Outlet landPawnee
Payne1890Original CountyStillwater
Pittsburg1907Choctaw landsMcAlester
Pontotoc1907Chickasaw landsAda
Pottawatomie1891Oklahoma TerritoryShawnee
Pushmataha1907Choctaw landsAntlers
Roger Mills1892Cheyene, Araphoe landCheyenne
Rogers1907Cherokee NationClaremore
Seminole1907Seminole landsWewoka
Sequoyah1907Cherokee landsSallisaw
Texas1907Beaver CountyGuymon
Tillman1907Comanche CountyFrederick
Tulsa1907Creek landsTulsa
Wagoner1907Creek landsWagoner
Washington1907Cherokee landsBartlesville
Washita1892Cheyenne, ArapahoCordell
Woods1893Cherokee Outlet landAlva
Woodward1893Cherokee Outlet landWoodward

>List of Oklahoma Extinct Counties

Oklahoma contains counties that no longer exist. They were organized by the state, provincial, or territorial governing administration. Many of these counties were created and disbanded in the 19th century; county boundaries have changed little since Nineteen hundred in the great majority of states. These counties need to be researched when performing ancestors and family history research. Pay attention where the courthouse records went to if the county was eliminated or merged with a different county.

  • Day County Formed in 1892 from Cheyenne & Arapaho lands. Abolished in 1907; now Ellis County area. Day County in Oklahoma Territory, was abolished at statehood, comprising the northern portion of Roger Mills County and the southern portion of Ellis County. Named for William R. Day
  • A County “A County” was the original designation for Lincoln County, Oklahoma Territory. It included some of the former Absentee Shawnee, Iowa, Kickapoo, and Sac & Fox Lands administered by the Sac & Fox Agency.
  • B County “B County” was the original designation for Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma Territory. It included some of the former Absentee Shawnee, Kickapoo, and Pottawatomie Lands administered by the Sac & Fox Agency.
  • C County “C County” was the original designation for Blaine County, Oklahoma Territory
  • D County “D County” was the original designation for Dewey County, Oklahoma Territory
  • E County “E County” was the original designation for Day County, Oklahoma Territory
  • F County “F County” was the original designation for Roger Mills County, Oklahoma Territory.
  • G County “G County” was the original designation for Custer County, Oklahoma Territory.
  • H County “H County” was the original designation for Washita County, Oklahoma Territory.
  • I County “I County” was the original designation for Caddo County, Oklahoma Territory
  • K County “K County” was the original designation for Kay County, Oklahoma Territory
  • L County “L County” was the original designation for Grant County, Oklahoma Territory.
  • M County “M County” was the original designation for Woods County, Oklahoma Territory.
  • N County “N County” was the original designation for Woodward County, Oklahoma Territory.
  • O County “O County” was the original designation for Garfield County, Oklahoma Territory.
  • P County “P County” was the original designation for Noble County, Oklahoma Territory.
  • Q County “Q County” was the original designation for Pawnee County, Oklahoma Territory.

>List of Oklahoma Counties with Burned Courthouses

The destruction to Oklahoma courthouses drastically has a affect on genealogists in almost every way. Not only are these kinds of historic structures ripped from our lifetimes, so are the documents they stored: marriage, wills, probate, land records, among others. Once destroyed they are lost permanently. Although they have been put on mircofilm, computers and film burn as well. The most heartbreaking aspect of this is the reason that almost all of our courthouses are destroyed as a result of arsonist. Though, don’t assume all records were destroyed. Numerous Oklahoma counties have suffered a loss of records due to courthouse fires, floods, and theft.

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