Illinois, Cook County Marriage Records - FamilySearch Historical Records
|Access the Records|
Illinois, Cook County Marriages, 1871-1920
|This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.|
|Cook, Illinois, |
|Flag of Illinois|
|Location of Cook County, Illinois|
|Location of Illinois|
|Record Type||Marriage Index|
|Cook County Clerk, Chicago|
- 1 What is in This Collection?
- 2 What Can These Records Tell Me?
- 3 How Do I Search This Collection?
- 4 What Do I Do Next?
- 5 Known Issues
- 6 Citing This Collection
What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]
This collection consists of a named index to marriages for Cook County, Illinois (including Chicago). It covers the years 1871 to 1920.
Before 1877, couples were not required to obtain marriage licenses. Beginning in 1877, the marriage records were kept in register books. By the early 1900s, most events were recorded on pre-printed forms. In 1962, an Illinois register of marriage began. Marriage records were submitted to the county clerk by the ministers or justices of the peace who performed the marriages.
Most of the marriage records prior to 1871 were destroyed by the Great Chicago Fire. If the marriage occurred before the fire and appeared in a newspaper, it’s possible that the marriage could be listed in the Sam Fink Index (see “Related Websites” on this page). Information within the Sam Fink Index can include the newspaper’s name in which the marriage appeared.
When searching this collection, a record may show a spade icon. This indicates that the record has a numbering discrepancy. A second search may return an unmarked marriage record without the icon.
Image Visibility[edit | edit source]
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What Can These Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]
The following information may be found in these records:
- Names of bride and groom
- Ages of bride and groom
- Town of residence of bride and groom
- Date license was issued
- Date marriage was solemnized
- Name of person officiating at marriage
After 1916, the following information was added:
- Birth date of bride and groom
- Full names of parents
How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]
Before searching this collection, it will be helpful to know:
- The name of your ancestor
- The approximate date of marriage
- The place where the marriage occurred
- The name of the intended spouse
Search the Index[edit | edit source]Search by name on the Collection Details Page.
- Fill in the search boxes in the Search Collection section with the information you know
- Click Search to show possible matches
|More images are available in the FamilySearch Catalog Illinois, Cook County Marriages, 1871-1920. Some catalog records link to multiple references. In this case, click on a reference to find a camera icon to see images.|
How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]
Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.
What Do I Do Next?[edit | edit source]
When you have located your ancestor’s marriage record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors.
I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]
- Add any new information to your records
- Search for other vital records, such as birth and death
- Search the family in census records
- Look for other records in Cook County, such as church, land and probate
I Can't Find the Person I'm Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]
- Check for variant spellings of the surnames
- Search the indexes and records of nearby counties
- If you know their religion, search for the marriage in church records
- Search family records such as a family bible
Research Helps[edit | edit source]
The following articles will help you in your research for your family in the state of Illinois.
Known Issues[edit | edit source]
Citing This Collection[edit | edit source]
Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.
When looking at a record, the citation can be viewed by clicking the drop-down arrow next to Document Information.