Montana Counties records vary widely from county to county in both quality as well as quantity. Some have been carefully maintained and some have been much neglected and neglected. A certain amount of Montana records have purely vanished.
County seats in Montana are the location of the county clerk and recorder (vital records and deeds) and the clerk of the district court (probate and court records). The latter includes civil and criminal files and naturalization’s.
Montana has counties that no longer are in existence. They were organized by the state, provincial, or territorial government. A lot of these counties were established and disbanded within the 19th century; county boundaries have modified very little since Nineteen hundred in the vast most of states. These counties need to be checked out when you are performing genealogy research. Pay attention where the courthouse records went to if the county was abolished or combined with some other county.
Big Horn County, Montana: created by the Territorial Legislature in 1865, renamed Custer in 1877
Edgerton County, Montana: created by the Territorial Legislature in 1865, renamed Lewis and Clark County in 1867
List of Montana Counties with Burned Courthouses
The destruction to Montana courthouses significantly has a affect on genealogists in every way. Not only are most of these historic buildings ripped from our lifetimes, so are the records they housed: marriage, wills, probate, land records, and others. Once destroyed they’re gone forever. Even though they have already been put on mircofilm, computers and film burn up as well. The most heartbreaking side of this is the reason that almost all of our courthouses are destroyed at the hands of arsonist. Though, you cannot assume all records were lost. Many Montana counties have experienced a loss of records due to courthouse fires, floods, and theft.