Putnam County, Tennessee Genealogy
Guide to Putnam County, Tennessee ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.
- 1 County Information
- 2 Resources
- 2.1 Bible Records
- 2.2 Biographies
- 2.3 Business, Commerce, and Occupations
- 2.4 Cemeteries
- 2.5 Census Records
- 2.6 Church Records
- 2.7 Court Records
- 2.8 Directories
- 2.9 Emigration and Immigration
- 2.10 Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups
- 2.11 Funeral Homes
- 2.12 Genealogies
- 2.13 Guardianship
- 2.14 Land and Property Records
- 2.15 Local Histories
- 2.16 Maps and Gazetteers
- 2.17 Migration
- 2.18 Military Records
- 2.19 Naturalization and Citizenship
- 2.20 Newspapers
- 2.21 Obituaries
- 2.22 Other Records
- 2.23 Periodicals
- 2.24 Probate Records
- 2.25 School Records
- 2.26 Social Security Records
- 2.27 Tax Records
- 2.28 Vital Records
- 3 Research Facilities
- 4 Societies
- 5 Websites
- 6 Research Guides
- 7 References
County Information[edit | edit source]
Description[edit | edit source]
The County was named for Israel Putnam, who was a hero in the French and Indian War and a general in the American Revolutionary War. The County is located in the north-central area of the state. 
County Courthouse[edit | edit source]
Putnam County Courthouse
421 E Spring Street
Cookeville, TN 38501
County Courthouse Phone: 931.526.6321
County Clerk Phone: 931-372-8201
County Register of Deeds Phone: 931-526-7101
County Circuit Court Clerk Phone: 931-528-1508
County Clerk has birth and death 1925-1940, incomplete birth and death records 1908-1912, marriage records from 1879 and probate records from 1876.
Clerk Chancery Court has divorce and court records from 1900.
Register of Deeds has land records from 1854.
Clerk Circuit Court court records from 1900.
County Historian; Rt. 2, Box 408; Cookeville, TN has miscellaneous court records. 
Putnam County, Tennessee Record Dates[edit | edit source]
Information for this chart was taken from various sources, often containing conflicting dates. This information should be taken as a guide and should be verified by contacting the county and/or the state government agency.
Record Loss[edit | edit source]
For suggestions about research in places that suffered historic record losses, see:
Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]
For animated maps illustrating Tennessee county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Tennessee County Boundary Maps" (1777-1985) may be viewed at the MapofUS.org website.
Populated Places[edit | edit source]
For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit HomeTown Locator. The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county:
History Timeline[edit | edit source]
Middle Tennessee county.
Resources[edit | edit source]
Bible Records[edit | edit source]
Biographies[edit | edit source]
Business, Commerce, and Occupations[edit | edit source]
Cemeteries[edit | edit source]
|See Tennessee Cemeteries for more information.|
Additional Cemetery Resources
Census Records[edit | edit source]
1850, 1860, 1870, 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, and 1940 federal population censuses of Putnam County are available online. For tips on accessing census records online, see Tennessee Census. If you're having trouble finding your ancestors in online indexes, try checking printed indexes. Created by local experts familiar with the area's families, these indexes are often transcribed more accurately than nationwide online indexes.
See Tennessee Population Schedule Indexes: Fiche, Film, or Book for more information about statewide printed indexes.
- McComb, Joyce B. The First Putnam County, Tennessee, United States Census, 1860. Lexington, South Carolina J.B. McComb, 1989. FHL 976.867 X2m 1860
- McGee, Norman T. 1870 United States Census of Putnam County, Tennessee. Arrington, Tennessee Lilac Hill Pub., 1989. FHL 976.867 X2m 1870
- McGee, Norman T. 1880 United States Census of Putnam County, Tennessee. Arrington, Tennessee Lilac Hill Pub., 1989. FHL 976.867 X2m 1880
- Sistler, Byron H. and Barbara Sistler. 1880 Census, Putnam County, Tennessee. Nashville, Tennessee: B. Sistler and Associates, 1991. FHL 976.867 X2s 1880
1890 Lost Substitutes are available:
- Reed, Sue S. Enumeration of Male Inhabitants of Twenty-one Years of Age and Upward, Citizens of Tennessee, January 1, 1891, as Provided for by an Act of General Assembly of Tennessee, Passed January 15, 1891, and Approved January 22, 1891. 8 vols. Houston, Texas: S.S. Reed, 1989. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 X2r v. 5 1891. Putnam County is included in Vol. 5.
- Sistler, Byron H. and Barbara Sistler. 1890 Civil War Veterans Census, Tennessee. Evanston, Ill.: Byron Sister and Associates, 1978. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 X2s 1890.
1891 Male Voters
- Clark, Fred L. The United States Twelfth Census of Putnam County, Tennessee, 1900. Quebeck, Tennessee F.L. Clark, 1994. FHL 976.867 X28v 1900
- Wilkerson, Azilee, Fred L. Clark, ed. The United States thirteenth Census of Putnam County, Tennessee, 1910. Quebeck, Tennessee F.L. Clark, 1992. FHL 976.867 X2w 1910
Church Records[edit | edit source]
- Grime, John Harvey. History of Middle Tennessee Baptists: With Special Reference to Salem, New Salem, Enon and Wiseman Associations. Nashville, Tennessee: Baptist and Reflector, 1902.Includes names changes for places in Middle Tennessee. Free digital copy.
- 1873-1886 - First Presbyterian Church, Cookeville, Baptism Index 1873-1886. Batch C711201 in International Genealogical Index at FamilySearch
Court Records[edit | edit source]
Directories[edit | edit source]
Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]
Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups[edit | edit source]
Funeral Homes[edit | edit source]
Genealogies[edit | edit source]
- The Upper Cumberland Genealogical Association, Inc. has uploaded a free "Index to the Charles Leonard Collection" on their website. It contains "a name index to family research files at the Putnam County Library in Cookeville TN."
- As of August 2010, a query for born in Putnam, Tennessee at World Connect, results in more than 30,000 entries.
- Dyer - Preator, Richard E. The Descendants of James Dyer and Jane Finn of Jackson Co. Tennessee. Salem, Mass.: Higginson, 1998. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 D988p.
- Maxwell - Maxwell, Harry L. Descendants of Samuel Maxwell of Putnam County and Jackson County, TN. Cookeville, Tenn.: H.L. Maxwell, [199-?]. FHL FAM HIST Book 929.273 M451mh.
Guardianship[edit | edit source]
Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]
Local Histories[edit | edit source]
Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]
Migration[edit | edit source]
Military Records[edit | edit source]
The following County Revolutionary War records are available online through TNGenWeb:
War of 1812
- Embry, Hermione D. "War of 1812 - Tennessee Pensioners on List - January 2, 1883," Ansearchin' News, Vol. 8, No. 2 (Apr. 1961):49-52. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 B2a v. 8 (1961); digital version at journal website. Includes Putnam County pensioners (p. 50).
- 1861-1865 - Tennessee, Civil War Service Records of Confederate Soldiers, 1861-1865 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
- 1861-1865 - Tennessee, Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, 1861-1865 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
- 1861-1865 - U.S., Confederate Soldiers Compiled Service Records, 1861-1865 at Ancestry — index (free)
- 1861-1865 - U.S., Union Soldiers Compiled Service Records, 1861-1865 at Ancestry — index (free)
- 1861-1865 - U.S., Civil War Soldier Records and Profiles, 1861-1865 at Ancestry
- 1891-1965 - Tennessee, Confederate Pension Applications, Soldiers and Widows, 1891-1965 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
- Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System
Regiments. Men in Putnam County served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (part of a large regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Putnam County:
- 8th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry - CSA - Company G.
- 13th Regiment, Tennessee Cavalry (Gore's) - CSA - Company C.
- 16th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry - CSA - Company F.
- 17th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry - CSA - Company R.
- 22nd Battalion, Tennessee Infantry (Murray's) - CSA - Company H.
- 25th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry - CSA - Companies F, I and K.
- 28th Consolidated Regiment, Tennessee Infantry - CSA - Companies D and H.
- 28th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry (2nd Tennessee Mountain Volunteers) - CSA - Companies E and I.
- 84th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry - CSA - Company D.
Additional sources for Civil War soldiers from Putnam County:
- Head, Thomas A. Campaigns and battles of the Sixteenth Regiment, Tennessee Volunteers, in the war between the states, with incidental sketches of the part performed by other Tennessee troops in the same war.1861-1865. Nashville, Tennessee: Cumberland Presbyterian Publishing House, 1885. Free digital copy.
- USGenWeb Archives, Putnam County Tennessee Archives. Civil War Records.
- Tennessee State Library and Archives, Tennessee Confederate Pension Applications: Putnam County. Includes soldier's name, county, pension #, unit or widow.
- United States Pension Bureau, List of Pensioners on the Roll January 1, 1883: Giving the Name of Each Pensioner, the Cause for... (Washington Printing Office; 1883). Online at Internet Archive. Putnam County, page 369.
- Civil War Soldiers From Putnam County. Compiled by Maurine Ensor Patton & Christine Spivey Jones.
Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]
Newspapers[edit | edit source]
- Extracts taken from the Putnam County Herald (19--?). FHL book 976.867 B38. Digital version available at FamilySearch Digital Library
- Many Tennessee newspapers are filmed and available at TSLA. Most of these newspapers may be accessed by interlibrary loan to libraries within Tennessee, although there are some newspapers which are not available in or outside of Tennessee. For further information regarding interlibrary loan policies and newspapers not available for interlibrary loan click here. For a list of newspapers available at the archives for Putnam County click on the following city or town:
- 1847 - 1851 - Smith, Jonathan K.T. Genealogical Abstracts from Reported Deaths, the Nashville Christian Advocate. [1847-1914] 10 vols. [Jackson, Tenn.]: J.K.T. Smith, 1997-2003. FHL US/CAN Books 976.855/N1 V48s 1847-1851 ff; digital versions at David Donahue Memorial: Tennessee Records Repository. Website expands upon the publications and includes deaths from the 1830s, 1840s, 1910s and 1920s. (Largely Methodist?)
Obituaries[edit | edit source]
Other Records[edit | edit source]
Prisons[edit | edit source]
- 1831-1850 - Inmates of the Tennessee State Penitentiary 1831-1850 at Tennessee State Library and Archives
- 1851-1870 - Inmates of the Tennessee State Penitentiary 1851-1870 at Tennessee State Library and Archives
Periodicals[edit | edit source]
Genealogical periodicals can contain unique sources and can be local, regional, or statewide. The following periodicals cover this county:
- Ansearchin' News: Quarterly magazine of the Tennessee Genealogical Society. For a keyword search, go to the county index. Read previous issues on their website; FHL Book 976.8 B2a.
- The Middle Tennessee Journal of Genealogy and History: Quarterly magazine of the Middle Tennessee Genealogical Society. For surnames, use the volume-by-volume index, or do a keyword search of the Article Index. FHL US/CAN Book 976.85 D25m.
- Overton County, Tennessee Kin: Publication of the Overton County Genealogical Society, covering all the area in Overton, Fentress, and Pickett County, TN along with Monterey in Putnam County, and Clinton, Wayne and Cumberland County in Kentucky. FHL US/CAN 976.8684 B2n
- The Upper Cumberland Researcher: Quarterly magazine of Upper Cumberland Genealogical Association. Articles include abstracts of records of Cannon, Clay, Cumberland, DeKalb, Fentress, Jackson, Macon, Overton, Pickett, Putnam, Smith, Van Buren, Warren, and White counties. Index of first 17 years, with county list starting on page 19. FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 B2u (1975-1993) and FHL US/CAN Book 976.8 B2u (1994-present).
Probate Records[edit | edit source]
The Putnam County Court has responsibility for the probate records.
Online Records and Indexes
- 1779-2008 Tennessee Wills and Probate Records 1779-2008 at Ancestry $
- 1874-1933 - Putnam County portion of Tennessee, Probate Court Books, 1795-1927 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection; handwritten indexes may be found at the front or back of some volumes.
Book Abstracts and Indexes
- Works Progress Administration. Putnam County, Tennessee, Miscellaneous Records. Nashville, Tennessee: Byron Sistler & Assoc., 1936. This indexed book includes diaries, letters, wills, indentures, and other misellaneous records from private collections. (FHL book 976.867 P2p.)
School Records[edit | edit source]
Social Security Records[edit | edit source]
- 1935-2014 United States Social Security Death Index at FamilySearch - How to use this collection; index. Also at Ancestry, findmypast, Fold3, GenealogyBank, MyHeritage, and Steve Morse. Click here for more information.
- 1936-2007 U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 at Ancestry ($) — index, click here for more information.
Tax Records[edit | edit source]
Book Abstracts and Indexes
- 1854-1855 - "Putnam County, Tennessee - Tax Book Index 1854-1855," The Upper Cumberland Researcher, Vol. 1, No. 3 ():10-. For access, see Periodicals.
- 1854-1855 - W.P.A. Putnam County, Tennessee Tax List 1854-1855. 2005 reprint, Signal Mountain, Tenn.: Mountain Press. Free online surname index; purchase details.
- 1855 - Paessler, Jane Park. "Putnam County, Tennessee 1855 Tax List," Ansearchin' News, Vol. 42, No. 1 (Spring 1995):7-12; Vol. 42, No. 2 (Summer 1995):61-63. For possible FHL and online access, as well as indexes, see Periodicals.
- 1858 Tax List, 1858, The Upper Cumberland Researcher, Vol. 24, No. 4 (Winter 1999). For access, see Periodicals.
- 1860's - "Putnam County, Tennessee - Civil War Tax List," The Upper Cumberland Researcher, Vol. 3, No. 3 ():3-. For access, see Periodicals.
- 1870-1872 - Civil District No. 16, 1870-72, The Upper Cumberland Genealogical Association Bulletin, Vol. 17, No. 3 (Fall 1992).
- 1883 - Freeman, Mitzi P. "Putnam County, TN - Tax Records-1883," (6 Districts) available online, courtesy: USGenWeb Archives.
- 1913 Road Taxpayers List, 1913, The Upper Cumberland Researcher, Vol. 23, No. 4 (Winter 1998). For access, see Periodicals.
- Delinquent Railroad Taxes, The Upper Cumberland Genealogical Association Bulletin, Vol. 11, No. 2 (Spring 1986). For access, see Periodicals.
Vital Records[edit | edit source]
Birth[edit | edit source]
- 1828-1939 - Tennessee Births and Christenings 1828-1939 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
- 1869-1909 - Tennessee Delayed Birth Records 1869-1909 at Ancestry $
- 1908-1912 - Tennessee, Birth Records (ER Series), 1908-1912 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
Marriage[edit | edit source]
'Online indexes and Records
- 1625-1966 - Tennessee, United States Marriages at FindMyPast $
- 1780-2002 - Tennessee State Marriages 1780-2002 at Ancestry $
- 1780-2002 - Tennessee State Marriage Index 1780-2002 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
- 1790-1962 - Tennessee County Marriages, 1790-1950 - at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection. Covers all counties in Tennessee.
- 1796-1950 - Tennessee Marriages 1796-1950 (Indexes only) at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
- 1838-1888 - Tennessee Civil Marriages, 1838-1888 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
- 1851-1900 - Tennessee Marriages 1851-1900 at Ancestry $
- 1878-1902 - Putnam County Marriage Index 1878-1902 in International Genealogical Index at FamilySearch.
- Extracts Taken from the Putnam County Herald. Manuscript. FHL Book 976.867 B38b Digital copy.
Death[edit | edit source]
- 1874-1955 - Tennessee Deaths and Burials 1874-1955 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
- 1908-1933 Tennessee Deaths, 1908 - 1933 at MyHeritage ($) — index
- 1908-1958 - Tennessee Death Records 1908 - 1958 at Ancestry $
- 1914-1966 - Tennessee Deaths, 1914-1966 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection
Divorce[edit | edit source]
- W.P.A. Guide to Public Vital Statistics in Tennessee. Nashville, Tenn.: The Tennessee Historical Records Survey, 1941. FamilySearch Books Online
Research Facilities[edit | edit source]
Archives[edit | edit source]
Listed below are archives in Putnam County. For state-wide archival repositories, see Tennessee Archives and Libraries.
Family History Centers[edit | edit source]
Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance, free access to center-only databases, and to premium genealogical websites.
FamilySearch Affiliate Libraries have access to most center-only databases, but may not always have full services normally provided by a family history center.
Local Centers and Libraries
Cookeville Tennessee Family History Center
981 S Walnut
Libraries[edit | edit source]
Listed below are libraries in Putnam County. For state-wide library facilities, see Tennessee Archives and Libraries.
Putnam County Library
50 East Broad St.
Cookeville, TN 38501
- The "Tennessee Room houses many items of interest to those doing research in genealogy."
Museums[edit | edit source]
Societies[edit | edit source]
Listed below are societies in Putnam County. For state-wide genealogical societies, see Tennessee Societies.
Upper Cumberland Genealogical Association, Inc.
P. O. Box 575
Cookeville, TN 38503-0575
Middle Tennessee Genealogical Society
PO Box 330948
Nashville, TN, USA 37203-7507
- The society serves the 40 counties of middle Tennessee of which Putnam County is one. It publishes The Middle Tennessee Journal of Genealogy and History, a quarterly containing articles of genealogical and historical interest. Little-known Tennessee records are published and indexed, along with family genealogies, Bible records and material submitted by members. There is an alphabetical Index to articles in the Journal 1988-summer 2005
Websites[edit | edit source]
- Putnam County, TN Genealogy and Family History (Linkpendium)
- Putnam County, TNGenWeb (USGenWeb)
- Rootwalker: Genealogy Pages for Northern Middle TN Free Genealogy Resources for the Region
- Putnam County TN Genealogy (ldsgenealogy.com)
- FamilySearch Catalog – The FamilySearch catalog contains descriptions and access information for all genealogical materials (including books, online materials, microfilm, microfiche, and publications) in their collection. Use Historical Records to search for specific individuals in genealogical records.
Research Guides[edit | edit source]
Genealogical "Fact Sheets" About Tennessee Counties: Putnam County, courtesy: TSLA. (Identifies published county histories, published local records, census records, newspapers and local records on microfilm, and select manuscripts.)
References[edit | edit source]
- Wikipedia contributors, "Putnam, Tennessee" in wikipedia accessed 03 Jan 2019
- The Handybook for Genealogists : United States of America, 10th ed., (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002) Putnam County, Tennessee, p.643
- Voice of Lynnae Weller, Kingsport, Tenn. (2010).
- Lost Records: Courthouse Fires and Disasters in Tennessee in Tennessee State Library and Archives in Tennessee Secretary of State (accessed 13 March 2016).
- Wikipedia contributors, "Putnam County, Tennessee," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Putnam_County,_Tennessee, accessed 10 December 2019.
- "List of counties in Tennessee," Wikipedia.
- Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at Media:Igitennesseel.pdf.