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Arkansas Genealogy

If you are researching Arkansas genealogy, you will have much to work with including a large amount of Civil War history. The state began collecting vital records in 1914 so the majority of historic material starts from that year but you can also find a lot of records from 1881 (particularly around Little Rock).

Vital Records

These are the documents that mark births, deaths and marriages. When looking up information on Arkansas genealogy, you will most likely be after these at some point. There are going to be some restrictions on ordering these records, so you may nor may not have an easy time making your request.

If you are directly related to the person on the record, then you can order any birth or death record you wish provided you provide proof of relationship along with your application form. If you are not related, then you can only make a records request if they are now public domain. That means 100 years later for birth records, or 50 years later for death records. Marriage records are not made public at any time.

So if you are allowed to make the request, you can get the proper forms from the Arkansas Department of Health website. Fill them out with your own contact information, a copy of your photo ID and all the necessary information about the person on the record. Include that along with the search fee, which is currently $10 for death records and $12 for birth records, and send everything to the Vital Records department of the Arkansas Department of Health. They are located in Little Rock and do allow for counter service if you wish to go in person for faster service.

Birth and death records can provide you with the location and dates of the respective events (death records often include birth dates as well as death dates). Many records can also provide you with occupations, residences, and parent's names.

Marriage records are only issued to the parties on the record, and they are not kept by the Vital Records office. If you are looking for a copy of your own marriage record, contact the local county clerk's office.

State Archives

You don't necessarily have to start making official requests in order to get good Arkansas genealogy material. The Arkansas History Commission and State Archives is a public collection of historic material that can be very helpful. They are located in Little Rock and you can even do some searches through their website to see what material they have. The collection includes court records, tax records, wills, naturalization documents and many vital records that are now public record. The archives are open to public researchers 6 days a week (closed on Sundays) and you can make copies of most material.

Other Sources of Information

If you are going to be doing a lot of Arkansas genealogy research, you should consider joining the Arkansas Genealogical Society. They have regular periodicals that can provide further information for you, and getting in contact with other members can lead you to personal documents that are not really available to the general public.

State Resources 


Census Records




  • 11th/17th Consolidated Infantry  A collection of members of the Arkansas 11th/17th Consolidated Infantry and their Descendants with information submitted by visitors.  If you had an ancestor in this Unit, please fill out the form at the bottom of the page and it will be added as soon as possible.  Also contains a muster roll of the units. 
  • Arkansas Civil War Information   
  • Battleground Upon Wilson's Creek, MO  Find casualty lists, 3rd Regiment State Troops, 1st Regiment of Arkansas Cavalry, State Troops, and 3rd Regiment plus Woodruff's Battery  
  • Civil War in Arkansas  Includes a searchable database so you can find out what happened in various counties during the war in Arkansas, Civil War stories about ancestors of current Arkansans, information about several groups in Arkansas dedicated to recording, reenacting and studying our Civil War heritage, and an interactive message board in which you can share all you know (or would like to know) about the Civil War in Arkansas.    
  • Confederate POW's Listed in Arkansas Units   This information was abstracted from the "Register of Confederate Dead Rock Island Illinois, compiled in the Office of the Commissioner for Marking Graves of Confederate Dead, War Department, 1912".

Native American

  • Creek Census 1860  Free Inhabitants in "The Creek Nation" in the County "West of the" State of "Arkansas" enumerated by me, on the "16th" day of "August" 1860. Signed: "Israel Vine" Asst. Marshal


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