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Santa Barbara County, California Genealogy

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Guide to Santa Barbara County, California ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

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Santa Barbara County, California
Map
Map of California highlighting Santa Barbara County
Location in the state of California
Map of the U.S. highlighting California
Location of California in the U.S.
Facts
Founded February 18, 1850
County Seat Santa Barbara
Courthouse
CaliforniaSantaBarbaraCourthouse.jpg
Address Hall of Records
1100 Anacapa St.
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Website: www.countyofsb.org
Named for: Saint Barbara
St-barbara.jpg
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County Information[edit | edit source]

Santa Barbara County, California Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Known Beginning Dates for Major Records[1]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1850 1850 1850 1850 1850 1854 1850
Statewide registration for births and deaths started in 1905. General compliance by 1920.

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Ca-santabarbara-ch.jpg

Santa Barbara County Courthouse
105 E Anapamu Rm #204
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Phone 805.568.2550

 
Superior Court has divorce, probate, court and naturalization records
Recorder has birth, marriage, death and land records from 1850[2]

Historical Facts[edit | edit source]

Santa Barbara area Native Americans were first contacted by several early explorers in the 1500s and 1600s but the first moves toward settlement by Europeans were Spanish in 1769. The Santa Barbara mission was founded in 1786 by Franciscan padres who were also the first record keepers.

Wikipedia
Wikipedia has more about this subject: Santa Barbara County, California









Parent County[edit | edit source]

18 February 1850: Santa Barbara was created as an original county when California first became a state. [3]

Description[edit | edit source]

The county was named from Mission Santa Barbara was founded on December 4, 1786 in what is now Santa Barbara. The county derives its name from the mission. The county seat Santa Barbara and the county was created 1856. The County is located in the west central area of the state.[4]

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

1 January 1873: Ventura County was set off.


For animated maps illustrating California county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation California County Boundary Maps" (1850-1925) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Records Loss[edit | edit source]

There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.

Places/Localities[edit | edit source]

The preceding list of places includes incorporated cities and towns, unincorporated towns and communities, and place names that may have been used in family histories. Some have well-organized records and even have websites. Some are simply social communities with no official records, but which may be referenced in small-town newspapers. The list is provided to help researchers identify localities within the county. As records or histories of these localities are identified, a page will be added for each of these place names. Information about the cemeteries can be found in these pages if known.

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:[5]

Cities
Unincorporated communities
Native American communities
Census-designated places


Resources[edit | edit source]

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Biography[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries of Santa Barbara, California online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
TombstoneTranscriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See California Cemeteries for more information

The following web sites may have additional information on Santa Barbara County cemeteries.

Census[edit | edit source]

For tips on accessing Santa Barbara County, California Genealogy census records online, see: California Census.

Church History and Records[edit | edit source]

Church records and the information they provide vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. They may contain information about members of the congregation, such as age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information and maiden names; and death date. For general information about California denominations, view the California Church Records wiki page.

Ward and Branch Records of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

  • Santa Maria

Court Records[edit | edit source]

Crime and Criminals[edit | edit source]

Directories[edit | edit source]

Ethnic, Political, or Religious Groups[edit | edit source]

Germans[edit | edit source]

Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Genealogy[edit | edit source]

The Santa Barbara County Genealogical Society has free online databases and indexes to search at sbgen.org and maintains the Sahyun library open for research at 316 Castillo St., Santa Barbara, CA 93101. Online subscriptions to Ancestry.com, Fold3, and GenealogyBank.com available to members only, or $5 per day.  WiFi available. 

Hours are: Tues., Thurs., Fri. - 10-4, Sun. 1-4.

Summer evening hours beginning in April - Tues. 5-8 p.m.

History[edit | edit source]

Local histories are available for Santa Barbara County, California Genealogy. County histories may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories, see the Wiki page section California Local Histories.

Land and Property[edit | edit source]

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents.

See California Land and Property for additional information about early California land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse and where records are currently housed.

Maps[edit | edit source]

San Luis Obispo CountyKern CountyVentura CountyCA SANTA BARBARA.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources


Migration[edit | edit source]

Military History and Records[edit | edit source]

Civil War[edit | edit source]

Regiments. Service men in Santa Barbara County, California Genealogy served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Santa Barbara County, California Genealogy:

- 1st Battalion, California Native Cavalry (Union), Company A
- 1st Battalion, California Native Cavalry (Union), Company C
World War II[edit | edit source]
Vietnam War[edit | edit source]

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Santa Barbara County, California Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

The county clerk is usually the custodian of probate records. The records include wills, fee books, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, probate ticklers, and dockets.

Content: Probate Records may give the decedent's date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, neighbors, associates, relatives, and their place of residence.

You can obtain copies of the original probate records (such as wills and estate files) by writing to the county clerk at the county courthouse.

The FamilySearch Catalog lists films of probate records. To find the records for this county, use the Place Search for California - Santa Barbara - Probate records.

Online Probate Records

Repositories[edit | edit source]

Archives, Libraries and Museums[edit | edit source]
County Courthouse[edit | edit source]
Family History Centers[edit | edit source]

Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance and free access to premium genealogical websites. In addition, many centers have free how-to genealogy classes.

Societies[edit | edit source]

Taxation[edit | edit source]

California tax records complement land records and can supplement the years between censuses. There may be gaps of several years in the tax records of some counties. For more information, see the wiki page California Taxation.

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents. See the CDC Where to Write website for information on acquiring copies of these records. The State office has records since July 1905. For earlier records, contact the County Recorder. See also How to order California Vital Records

Santa Barbara Mission archives contain early births, baptisms, marriages and deaths.

Birth[edit | edit source]
Marriage[edit | edit source]
Divorce[edit | edit source]
Death[edit | edit source]

Voting Registers[edit | edit source]

Genealogy Societies, Archives and Libraries[edit | edit source]

Santa Barbara County Genealogical Society
316 Castillo Street
P.O. Box 1303
Goleta 93116-1303
Website

Santa Maria Valley Genealogical Society
PO Box 1215
Santa Maria, CA 93456

Vandenburg Genealogical Society
PO Box 81
Lompoc, CA 93438-0081

Websites[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Santa Barbara County, California. Page 84-88 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002; Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Third ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 2004), 81-83.
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Santa Barbara County, California. Page 87At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. WorldCat 50140092FHL CollectionHandybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed.] (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002)
  4. Genealogy Trails History Group, “Santa Barbara County, California Genealogy and History”, http://genealogytrails.com/cal/sbarbara/ 05/08/2017.
  5. Wikipedia contributors, "Santa Barbara County, California," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santa_Barbara_County,_California, accessed 23 September 2019.