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How Do I Find ... ?

 
 
 
 
 
 
06. deeds   13. tax lists
07. divorce records    

 

01. How do I find ... ADOPTION RECORDS?

Post 1951 Adoption Records
On September 27, 1999 the Supreme Court of Tennessee at Nashville issued an opinion in the case of PROMISE DOE, ET AL., VS. DONALD SUNQUIST, ET. AL and upheld a new adoption records law that was to take effect July 1, 1996. After more than three years of litigation, the Supreme Court concluded that the disclosure of adoption records created on or after March 16, 1951 does not impair the vested rights or violate the right to privacy under the Tennessee constitution. This ruling by the Supreme Court allows the Department of Children’s Services to begin processing requests for services to persons eligible to have access to their adoption records.

The department is able to act under provisions of Tennessee Code Annotated §36-1-12 ( c ) to provide access to adoption records, sealed adoption records, sealed records, post adoption records, or records from any other information source that were created on or after March 16, 1951.

Adoption records may be released pursuant to court order as provided in Tennessee Code §36-1-138. If any adoption was attempted or occurred before March 16, 1951, the law affecting services available to eligible persons was effective July 1, 1995.

Adoption records for eligible persons are available to those surrendered for the purpose of adoption; for adoptions which were filed and dismissed or not completed, and the record was closed or sealed prior to March 16, 1951; and for any records maintained at any time by the Tennessee Children’s Home Society.

The adoption record includes sealed adoption records, post-adoption records, court records, adoption agency and Department of Health Vital records.

Department of Children's Services
Post Adoption Unit
436 6th Avenue, NW
8th Floor, Cordell Hull Building
Nashville, Tennessee 37243-1290
(615)532-5637
Access to Adoption Records: http://www.tn.gov/youth/adoption/recordsaccess.htm

 

 

02. How do I find ... BIRTH CERTIFICATES?

STATE BIRTH RECORDS

The state of Tennessee did not begin keeping birth records state-wide until 1908.

The Tennessee State Library and Archives has state-wide birth records for the years 1908-1912. Instructions & forms for ordering a search of these birth records can be found in Genealogical Services Available by Mail - State Records. TSLA does NOT accept e-mail or telephone request to search the 1908-1912 birth records.

State-wide birth records for the years 1914-2011 are held by the Office of Vital Records, Tennessee Department of Health.

 

CITY BIRTH RECORDS

The four larger cities in Tennessee -- Nashville, Knoxville, Chattanooga and Memphis -- did keep earlier birth records for their specific communities. In most cases, the records cover the cities themselves and do not include suburbs or other communities in the county. The Tennessee State Library and Archives has copies of the early city birth records for Nashville (1881-1907), Knoxville (1881-1907), Chattanooga (1879-1907), and Memphis (1874-1883). Instructions & forms for ordering a search of these birth records can be found in Genealogical Services Available by Mail - State Records. TSLA does NOT accept e-mail or telephone request to search the city birth records.

The Shelby County Register of Deeds has posted an online index to Shelby County birth records for the years 1874-1906.

Memphis city birth records for 1884-1907 can be obtained from the Memphis-Shelby County Health Department, Division of Vital Records, 814 Jefferson Avenue, Memphis TN 38105 or by calling (901) 544-7730.

The Metro Archives of Nashville and Davidson County has posted an online index to Nashville city birth records for 1881 - 1913 and an online index to Davidson County birth records for 1908-1912.

PLEASE NOTE: Ancestry.com, in partnership with the Tennessee State Library and Archives, has added an index to and scanned images of the city birth records of Nashville, Knoxville and Chattanooga for 1881-1915. The indexes to these records at Ancestry.com's Tennessee State Library and Archives web page can be viewed by all. RESIDENTS OF TENNESSEE who are not members of Ancestry.com can view the scanned copies of the records by first going to the Tennessee Electronic Library page at http://tntel.tnsos.org/, clicking on the Genealogy tab, and then clicking on Tennessee Records; the scans of the delayed birth records can then be viewed after a free log-in on the Ancestry site. The indexes and images are free to Tennessee residents. Individuals who subscribe to Ancestry.com can also view the scanned records. 

 

DELAYED BIRTH RECORDS

When the Social Security Administration was created in 1935, the agency asked for birth certificates as proof the applicant qualified for entry into the program. Most Tennesseans who wished to apply, however, were born prior to the 1908 law that first required the keeping of birth certificates. Beginning in 1935, Tennessee began to issue Delayed Birth Certificates. These certificates were not issued automatically; the applicant had to request the record from the state, and must supply supporting documents or letters.

The Tennessee State Library and Archives has copies of the Delayed Birth Certificates for the birth years 1869-1913. TSLA will accept e-mail requests to search the index to the Delayed Birth Certificates. Please include the name of the individual, an approximate date or year of birth, the county of birth (if known), and (if known) the name of the mother. We also ask that you include your name, city and state with your request. TSLA will accept only one request at a time to search for a single record; once you receive a response to your request, you may send in your next request, and so on. TSLA will respond to e-mail requests promptly; response time may vary, depending on the amount of research required to answer your question and the unique nature of your request. If you need immediate assistance you may call the reference desk at (615) 741-2764 or visit us in person.

PLEASE NOTE: Ancestry.com, in partnership with the Tennessee State Library and Archives, has added an index to and scanned images of the 1869-1909 delayed birth records of Tennessee. The indexes to these records at Ancestry.com's Tennessee State Library and Archives web page can be viewed by all. RESIDENTS OF TENNESSEE who are not members of Ancestry.com can view the scanned copies of the records by first going to the Tennessee Electronic Library page at http://tntel.tnsos.org/, clicking on the Genealogy tab, and then clicking on Tennessee Records; the scans of the delayed birth records can then be viewed after a free log-in on the Ancestry site. The indexes and images are free to Tennessee residents. Individuals who subscribe to Ancestry.com can also view the scanned records. 

Delayed Birth Certificates for the birth years following 1913 are held by the Office of Vital Records, Tennessee Department of Health.

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm (Central Time) Tuesday through Saturday to search the birth records yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

 

03. How do I find ... CENSUS RECORDS?

The Tennessee State Library and Archives has microfilmed copies of Tennessee census records. Many of the early census records, however, have been lost or destroyed. (The territorial census of Tennessee and the 1800 census of Tennessee were lost. Nearly all of the 1810 census of Tennessee was destroyed; only the records for Grainger County & Rutherford County have survived. Most of the records for counties in east Tennessee are missing from the 1820 census of Tennessee.) The 1830 census of the state is the first complete census on record for the state. The 1890 census of Tennessee was destroyed in a fire in Washington D.C.

TSLA has published census indexes for many of the census years: some of the indexes cover the entire state, while others cover specific counties. Please check the following pages on our web site for information on the indexes: Making the Best Use of Tennessee Census Index Books, 1820-1840; Making the Best Use of Tennessee Census Index Books, 1850-1880; Using Tennessee Census Records 1880-1940; and Genealogical Fact Sheets About Tennessee Counties.

TSLA will, for a fee, make a photocopy of a specified surname from a census index, or make a photocopy of a specified Tennessee census record. Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - Census Records for instructions on ordering a record.

PLEASE NOTE: RESIDENTS OF TENNESSEE can view scanned copies of Tennessee census records by first going to the Tennessee Electronic Library page at http://tntel.tnsos.org/, clicking on the Genealogy tab, and then clicking on ProQuest's HeritageQuest Online.

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm Central Time Tuesday through Saturday to search the census records yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

 

04. How do I find ... COURT RECORDS?

The Tennessee State Library and Archives has copies of the court minutes for circuit, chancery and county courts in Tennessee. The document Courts Where Tennessee Court Cases Were Tried will explain which court heard a particular type of case during a specified time period. You may wish to check the Index to County Microfilm Reels or the Genealogical Fact Sheets About Tennessee Counties to see what records we have available for a specific county.

TSLA will, for a fee, search a five year date span in the indexed minutes from the County or Quarterly Court, Circuit Court, or Chancery Court. Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - County Records for instructions on ordering a search for a record.

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm (Central Time) Tuesday through Saturday to search the court records yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

 

05. How do I find ... DEATH CERTIFICATES?

STATE DEATH RECORDS

The state of Tennessee did not begin keeping death records state-wide until 1908.

The Tennessee State Library and Archives has state-wide death records for the years 1908-1912 and 1914-1963. Instructions & forms for ordering a search of these death records can be found in Genealogical Services Available by Mail - State Records. TSLA does NOT accept e-mail or telephone requests to search for a death records.

PLEASE NOTE: Ancestry.com, in partnership with the Tennessee State Library and Archives, has added an index to and scanned images of Tennessee death records for the years 1908-1958. The indexes to these records at Ancestry.com's Tennessee State Library and Archives web page can be viewed by all. RESIDENTS OF TENNESSEE who are not members of Ancestry.com can view the scanned copies of the records by first going to the Tennessee Electronic Library page at http://tntel.tnsos.org/, clicking on the Genealogy tab, and then clicking on Tennessee Records; the scans of the delayed birth records can then be viewed after a free log-in on the Ancestry site. The indexes and images are free to Tennessee residents. Individuals who subscribe to Ancestry.com can also view the scanned records. 

The following indexes are available on the TSLA web site: Index to Tennessee Death Records 1908-1912; and Statewide Index to Tennessee Death Records (1914-1933).

An online index to Shelby County death records for the years 1848-1956 and a state-wide index to Tennessee death records for the years 1949-2009 is available on the web site of the Shelby County Register of Deeds.

State-wide death records for the years 1964-2014 are held by the Office of Vital Records, Tennessee Department of Health.

 

CITY DEATH RECORDS

The four larger cities in Tennessee -- Nashville, Knoxville, Chattanooga and Memphis -- did keep earlier death records for their specific communities. In most cases, the records cover the cities themselves and do not include suburbs or other communities in the county. The Tennessee State Library and Archives has copies of the early city death records for Nashville (1874-1907), Knoxville (1881-1907), Chattanooga (1872-1907), and Memphis (1848-1907). (The Shelby County Register of Deeds has posted an online index to Shelby County death records for the years 1848-1956.) Instructions & forms for ordering a search of these death records can be found in Genealogical Services Available by Mail - State Records. TSLA does NOT accept e-mail or telephone request to search the city death records.

PLEASE NOTE: Ancestry.com, in partnership with the Tennessee State Library and Archives, has added an index to and scanned images of the city death records of Nashville, Knoxville and Chattanooga for 1872-1923. The indexes to these records at Ancestry.com's Tennessee State Library and Archives web page can be viewed by all. RESIDENTS OF TENNESSEE who are not members of Ancestry.com can view the scanned copies of the records by first going to the Tennessee Electronic Library page at http://tntel.tnsos.org/, clicking on the Genealogy tab, and then clicking on Tennessee Records; the scans of the delayed birth records can then be viewed after a free log-in on the Ancestry site. The indexes and images are free to Tennessee residents. Individuals who subscribe to Ancestry.com can also view the scanned records. 

Davidson County (as distinct from Nashville) began keeping their own death records in 1900 and continued to do so through 1913. An index to Davidson County Death Records 1900-1913 is available on the TSLA web site.

An online index to Shelby County death records for the years 1848-1956 is available on the web site of the Shelby County Register of Deeds.

 

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm (Central Time) Tuesday through Saturday to search the court records yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

 

06. How do I find ... DEEDS?

 The Tennessee State Library and Archives has microfilmed copies of the deeds for every county in Tennessee. The deeds records are arranged by the name of the seller/buyer  (grantor/grantee).  We do not have a means to search for a deed record by knowing the area or longitude & latitude of the property. Instructions & forms for ordering a search of the deed records can be found in Genealogical Services Available by Mail - County Records. TSLA does NOT accept e-mail or telephone request to search the deed records.

When a deed search is requested, we follow these procedures:

  • We locate the cumulative index (if available), usually in a book separate from the deed books. If there is no cumulative index, we use the index appearing in each volume of deeds.
  • We check to see if the index indicates the date of the deed. If it does, we search the portion of the index covering the dates requested for the name requested.
  • If the dates are not shown in the index entries, we determine which deeds books were in use during the dates requested in the search. For example: if the request is for a deed dated 1860-1865, and we find that Deed Book C covered 1856-1861 and Deed Book D covered 1861-1866, we would search that portion of the index that includes entries for Deed Books C and D.
  • Within the time period requested, we look for deeds matching the name of the person requested. Both grantor (seller) and grantee (buyer) indexes are searched. Deed indexes are not always completely alphabetized, but only grouped under each letter of the alphabet. For example: to locate deeds for Jasper Bates, we scan the entire letter & #8220;B” in the index.
  • If an entry matching the request is found, we copy the deed and mail it to the client.
  • If more than one matching entry is found, we copy the index pages containing them and mail them to the client, with instructions to select one to be copied at the standard fee.
  • If no related entry is found, we advise the client that the index was searched, indicating the dates covered by the search.


 Deeds are not always recorded in the year they are written, so a deed written in 1865 but not recorded until 1875 will not be located using this search strategy. We have no way of ascertaining whether a deed was recorded when it was written. Name of grantor is not always the expected name; some properties are sold by power of attorney, sheriff or court clerk to satisfy a legal judgment, so the deed would be indexed under the name of that person.  

For more information on deeds, visit our web site for a list of early county records that can be loaned to other libraries. You may wish to check the Index to County Microfilm Reels or the Genealogical Fact Sheets About Tennessee Counties to see what deed records we have available for a specific county.

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm (Central Time) Tuesday through Saturday to search the court records yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

 

07. How do I find ... DIVORCE RECORDS?

  In the early days of Tennessee, divorce requests had to be approved by the Tennessee General Assembly.  The Index to Names in the Acts of Tennessee 1796-1850 will allow you to search if there is a listing for a particular individual.  TSLA can, for a fee, copy up to three chapters from the published Acts of Tennessee.  If an act is located, we an also check to see if a legislative petition is on file for the divorce.

  Court minutes are another location to search for records concerning the granting of a divorce.  We recommend that you read the document “Courts Where Tennessee Court Cases Were Tried” to find the types of cases heard by the courts.  The list of Earliest County Records and the Inventory of Local Records on Microfilm will give the dates of the court minutes in our collection for the counties of Tennessee.  You must provide the name of the husband & wife, the year of the divorce (or a five year range to search), specify one county, and specify one court to be searched.      If the divorce took place after 1834, and involved a dispute over the division of property, then it would have been heard in the Chancery Court;   if the divorce did not involve a dispute over the division of property, then it would have been heard in the Circuit Court.  (See the section on ordering a search of the court minutes for additional information.)

  TSLA has a state-wide divorce index for July 1, 1945 - 1963.  To search for a divorce from this time period, you must  provide us with the name of the husband & wife, the date of the divorce or a five year range to search, and (if known) the county where the divorce was granted.

Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - County Records for instructions on ordering a search for a divorce record.

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm (Central Time) Tuesday through Saturday to search the records yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

 

08. How do I find ... LAND GRANTS?

The Tennessee State Library and Archives has a printed index which lists the names of individuals who received North Carolina land grants in Tennessee and land grants obtained directly from the state of Tennessee. E-mail TSLA with the name of the individual, and we will check to see if there is a listing in the index. Please send only one e-mail search request at a time for a single name. TSLA will respond to e-mail requests promptly; response time may vary, depending on the amount of research required to answer your question and the unique nature of your request. If you need immediate assistance you may call the reference desk at (615) 741-2764 or visit us in person.

A copy of the original land grant document can be purchased, once the index has been used to identify the volume, page and district showing where a grant is recorded. Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - State Records for instructions on ordering a search for a land grant.

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm (Central Time) Tuesday through Saturday to search the land grant records yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

 

09. How do I find ... MARRIAGE RECORDS?

The Tennessee State Library and Archives has copies of the early marriage records that are on file at the county where the marriage took place. In many cases, the official marriage record will consist of an entry made into a marriage ledger book by the county court clerk. This record will list only the names of the bride & groom, minister or justice of the peace, and (sometimes) the bondsman. From the 1880s through the 1920s, some counties kept duplicate copies of the marriage licence that was given to the bride & groom.

A list of extant Tennessee marriages before 1861 has been published. E-mail TSLA with the name of the groom and/or bride, and the county (if known). Please send only one e-mail search request at a time for a single marriage.  We will check the index by e-mail at no charge, and notify you if a listing for the marriage is found.   TSLA will respond to e-mail requests promptly; response time may vary, depending on the amount of research required to answer your question and the unique nature of your request. If you need immediate assistance you may call the reference desk at (615) 741-2764 or visit us in person.

Microfilm copies of pre-1861 marriage records are also available free on interlibrary loan. For more information, visit our web site for a list of county records that can be loaned to other libraries. You may wish to check the Index to County Microfilm Reels or the Genealogical Fact Sheets About Tennessee Counties to see what marriage records we have available for a specific county.

Marriages 1861 - June 30, 1945 can be found in the records of each county. There is no state-wide index to marriages during this time period. We can search for a marriage record if given the names of the groom and bride, county of marriage, and the date of the marriage or a 5-year date span. If the marriage occurred in one of the four metropolitan counties (Davidson County, Hamilton County, Knox County and Shelby County), a 3-year date span must be specified. Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - County Records for instructions on ordering a search for a marriage record. PLEASE NOTE that TSLA does not have Davidson County marriage records for May 1941 - June 1945. These records are available through the Metropolitan Archives of Nashville and Davidson County.

For the time period from July 1, 1945 - December 31, 1949, there is a year-by-year statewide index to Tennessee marriage records. The index is arranged by the name of the groom. A request for a marriage record search for the time period July 1, 1945-December 31, 1949 must include the name of the groom. TSLA will search a five year range in this index. The search request requires the name of the groom and the date of the marriage (or we will search the five year range 1945-1949); the name of the bride & the county of marriage are not required, but should be included if known. Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - County Records for instructions on ordering a search for a marriage record.

For the years 1950-1963, there is a year-by-year statewide index to Tennessee marriage records. This index can be searched by either the name of the bride or the name of the groom. The search request should include the name of the bride or groom (or both), the county where the marriage took place (optional), and the date of the marriage (or we will search a five year range). Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - County Records for instructions on ordering a search for a marriage record.

Marriage records for 1964 - present are held by the Office of Vital Records, Tennessee Department of Health.

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm (Central Time) Tuesday through Saturday to search the marriage records yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

 

10. How do I find ... MILITARY RECORDS?

The Tennessee State Library and Archives has copies of military records or published indexes to military records in our collection. Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - Military Records for and select the war or military action for instructions on ordering a military records.

Please note that the Tennessee State Library and Archives does not have copies of military records for World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, or more recent military conflicts. These records can be obtained from the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis.

 

LINKS

 

 

11. How do I find ... NEWSPAPERS?

The Tennessee State Library and Archives has one of the largest collection of Tennessee newspapers in the country. A list of newspapers and available dates, arranged by town of publication, can be consulted to determine what papers are available for searching. This list of Tennessee newspapers on microfilm at TSLA is found on our Web site.

Because the newspapers are not indexed, you must specify the newspaper to be searched, the name or subject of the article,  and the exact date of the event or the issue to be searched. Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - Miscellaneous Records for instructions on ordering a search for a newspaper article.

TSLA will loan newspaper microfilm to libraries located in Tennessee. We do not loan newspaper microfilm to libraries outside of the state. Please see TSLA's Interlibrary Loan Policies & Procedures for information on requesting newspaper microfilm.

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm (Central Time) Tuesday through Saturday to search the newspapers yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

 

12. How do I find ... PROBATE RECORDS?

A list of extant Tennessee wills dated before 1779-1861 has been published. E-mail TSLA with the name of the name of the individual, an approximate year for the will, and the county (if known) where the will was probated. Please send only one e-mail search request at a time for a single probate record.  We will check the index by e-mail at no charge, and notify you if a listing for the will is found.   TSLA will respond to e-mail requests promptly; response time may vary, depending on the amount of research required to answer your question and the unique nature of your request. If you need immediate assistance you may call the reference desk at (615) 741-2764 or visit us in person.

Probate records dated after 1861 can be found in the records of each county. There is no state-wide index to probate records during this time period. We can search for a probate record if given the name of the individual, the county where the will was probated, and the date of the will or a 5-year date span. Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - County Records for instructions on ordering a search for a probate record.

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm (Central Time) Tuesday through Saturday to search the probate records yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

 

13. How do I find ... TAX LISTS?

There are tax lists for scattered dates for most Tennessee counties. Most tax lists are available on microfilm. A list of early Tennessee tax lists at TSLA can be found on our web site. Contact us to inquire what tax lists are available for a particular county. You may wish to check the Index to County Microfilm Reels or the Genealogical Fact Sheets About Tennessee Counties to see what records we have available for a specific county.

Many early tax lists have been published in book form. If the tax list you want checked has been published, we will search for the name of one specified individual. E-mail TSLA with the name of the individual, the county, and the year of the tax list. TSLA will respond to e-mail requests promptly; response time may vary, depending on the amount of research required to answer your question and the unique nature of your request. If you need immediate assistance you may call the reference desk at (615) 741-2764 or visit us in person.

Please go to Genealogical Services Available by Mail - County Records for instructions on ordering a search for a tax record. Most tax lists are not indexed. We cannot search an unindexed tax list for a name.

PLEASE NOTE: Ancestry.com, in partnership with the Tennessee State Library and Archives, has added an index to and scanned images of the early Tennessee Tax List records for 1783-1895. The indexes to these records at Ancestry.com's Tennessee State Library and Archives web page can be viewed by all. RESIDENTS OF TENNESSEE who are not members of Ancestry.com can view the scanned copies of the records by first going to the Tennessee Electronic Library page at http://tntel.tnsos.org/, clicking on the Genealogy tab, and then clicking on Tennessee Records; the scans of the tax lists can then be viewed after a free log-in on the Ancestry site. The indexes and images are free to Tennessee residents. Individuals who subscribe to Ancestry.com can also view the scanned records. 

The records at the Tennessee State Library and Archives are open to the public. You are welcome to come in 8:00am - 4:30pm (Central Time) Tuesday through Saturday to search the tax lists yourself & make your own copies for research. Please see the TSLA Visitors Page for information on directions, parking, and holiday hours.

Please note: Archival materials are available for retrieval between the hours of 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. If you know you will need materials between 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, please call ahead to the Public Services section at 615-741-2764 or e-mail TSLA. We will do our best to accommodate your request.

 

LINKS

 

Updated September 25, 2014

 

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