Ventura County, California Genealogy Guide
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Ventura County, California (Map It) was created on March 22, 1872 from Santa Barbara County . Ventura County was named for the Mission San Buenaventura (was founded in 1782 now known as Ventura). Buenaventura is composed of two Spanish words, buena meaning “good” and ventura meaning “fortune.” Learn More About State of California History
Ventura County Cities and Towns include Camarillo, Fillmore, Moorpark, Ojai, Oxnard, Port Hueneme, Santa Paula, Simi Valley, Thousand Oaks, Ventura .
Since its creation Ventura County boundries have changed to include these:
- Most of the county came from territory in Santa Barbara County from 1850 to 1872 when it was moved to Ventura County.
- Territory was in San Luis Obispo County from 1850 to 1872 when it was moved to Ventura County.
- Territory in Los Angeles County from 1850 to 1851, was in Santa Barbara County from 1851 to 1872 when it was moved to Ventura County.
- Territory in Santa Barbara County from 1850 to 1872, was in Los Angeles County from 1872 to 1881, when it was added to Ventura County.
- Territory in Los Angeles County from 1850 to 1851, and in Santa Barbara County from 1851 to 1872, was in Los Angeles County again from 1872 to 1881, when it was added to Ventura County.
Ventura County, California Courthouse Records
Ventura County, CA Courthouse
Old Ventura County Courthouse
Courthouse History - The second of Ventura County's courthouses was turned over to the City of San Buenaventura for use as its city hall after construction of a new county center in 1978. This ornate building, which features a series of gargoyle-like monks' faces along the façade and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is dramatically situated on a hill with full views of the city and the Channel Islands. One of the most celebrated defense attorneys who practiced at the courthouse was Erle Stanley Gardner, the creator of the Perry Mason mystery series, who worked here in the 1920s and 1930s.
Please contact the each clerk's department to confirm mailing address, hours, fees and other information before visiting or requesting information because contact information sometimes changes. The Clerk's Office DOES NOT DO RESEARCH. The documents are available to interested parties, barring confidential issues. Most staff will assist people in finding the materials, but it is up to the individual to do the research. Some early court records from the various courts may have been sent to the California State Archives. Besides court minutes and judgements, these records include tax lists, wills, deeds, estate inventories, and marriage bonds. The California State Archives has microfilm of selected county records, 1850–1919.
The following dates indicates what vital, land, probate, and court records are in Ventura county. The date listed for each category of record is usually the earliest registration filed. The earliest date does not indicate that there are numerous records for that year and does not mean that all such events were actually registered. Some counties encompass land settled in the eighteenth century; their records pre-date county formation. Land transactions and vital records recorded in the county are at the county recorder's office. The county clerk general has probate books and files from the county's superior court, civil court records, and naturalizations. Divorces may be in either place, depending on how filed.
- Ventura County Recorder-Clerk has Birth / Death Records from 1872, Marriage Records from 1873 and Land Records from 1871. The County Recorder-Clerk is s responsible for examination and recording of all documents presented for recording that deal with establishing ownership of land in the County or as required by statute; administers the real property transfer tax law and maintains a permanent record and indexes of all documents for public viewing plus providing certified copies requested by the public; recording of all lawful documents such as deeds, deeds of trust, judgments, liens, affidavits, Uniform Commercial Code Financial Statements, etc; and the filing of Births, Deaths, and Marriages.
- Ventura County Clerk of Superior Court has Probate Records from 1873 and Court Records from 1873. The County Clerk of Superior Court has probate books and files from the county's superior court, civil court records, and naturalizations. Divorces may be here or in the Recorders Office, depending on how it was filed.
- Ventura County County Treasurer / Tax Collector
- Local Registrar of Births and Deaths, 2240 East Gonzales Road, Suite 150, Oxnard, CA 93036; Office (805) 981-5172
Ventura County, California Census Records
- Learn More: State of California Census Records
- U.S. Federal Population Schedules: 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragmented), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940
- State Population Schedules: Voter Registers, 1866-1898, Voter Registrations, 1900-1968
- U.S. Federal Census Mortality Schedules: 1880
- Selected U.S. Federal Census Agriculture Schedules: 1880
- Selected U.S. Federal Census Industry Schedules: 1880
- Union Veterans Schedules: 1890
Ventura County, California Vital Records
- Learn More: State of California Vital Records
- Birth Records: from July 1905 to present.
- Marriage Records: Indexes from 1949-1986 and 1998-1999.
- Death Records: from July 1905 to present. See Local County Recorder
- Divorce Records: from 1962 and June, 1984. See local County Circuit or County Chancery Clerk.
- Locations: California Department of Public Health, Vital Records, – MS 5103, 1501 Capitol Avenue, Sacramento, CA 95814; PH (916) 445-1719 or (916) 445-2684
- Vital Records Online: USAVital, VitalChek or Social Security Death Index
- Vital Records by Mail: Birth Certificate, Marriage Certificate, Divorce Certificate, Death Certificate Applications.
Ventura County, California Resources
- Ventura County Genealogical Society; Archives
- Ventura County Historical Society, 100 East Main Street, Ventura 93001-2698; (805) 653-0323
- Moorpark Historical Society
- Ventura County, California Message Boards
- Ventura County, California Genealogy Forum
- Ventura County, California Mailing lists