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Guide to Benton County, Iowa ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

County Facts
County seat: Vinton
Organized: March 1, 1846[1]
Parent County(s): Dubuque[2]
Neighboring Counties
Black Hawk  • Buchanan  • Iowa  • Johnson  • Linn  • Poweshiek  • Tama
See County Maps
Courthouse
Iowa, Benton County Courthouse.png
Location Map
Iowa Benton Map.png
Adoption

County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The County was named for Thomas Hart Benton. The County is located in the east central area of the state.[3]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Benton County Courthouse
111 East 4th Street
PO Box 719
Vinton, IA 52349-1771
Phone: 319-472-2766
Benton County Website

Benton County, Iowa 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.

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[4]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1880 1852 1880 1850 1846 1872 1847
* Statewide registration started for births in July 1880 and for deaths Jan 1891. General compliance by 1924.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

1853 Courthouse burned but there was no record loss.

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

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:[8]

Cities
Census-designated places
Townships


History Timeline[edit | edit source]

Resources[edit | edit source]

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Biographies[edit | edit source]

Business, Commerce, and Occupations[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries of Benton County, Iowa online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See Iowa Cemeteries for more information.

 

Census Records[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1850 672
1860 8,496 1164.3%
1870 22,454 164.3%
1880 24,888 10.8%
1890 24,178 −2.9%
1900 25,177 4.1%
1910 23,156 −8.0%
1920 24,080 4.0%
1930 22,851 −5.1%
1940 22,879 0.1%
1950 22,656 −1.0%
1960 23,422 3.4%
1970 22,885 −2.3%
1980 23,649 3.3%
1990 22,429 −5.2%
2000 25,308 12.8%
2010 26,076 3.0%
Source: "Wikipedia.org".

Iowa recorded not only the federal census but state census through out the years too. The state census contains very valuable genealogical information. Where the census information can be found, what years it was taken, mortality schedules, census substitutions and much more is discussed in the very informative Iowa Census article.

State Census

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Most church records are held by individual churches. Some denominations are gathering their records into a central repository. For more information about these major repositories, see Iowa Church Records.

Lutheran

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]

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]

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

See Iowa Land and Property for information about early Iowa land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, transactions were usually recorded and housed at the county courthouse.

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Local histories are available for Benton County, which may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories, see Iowa Local Histories.

  • The history of Benton County, Iowa containing a history of the county, its cities, towns, &c., a biographical directory of its citizens, war record of its volunteers in the late rebellion, general and local statistics, portraits of early settlers and prominent men, history of the Northwest, history of Iowa, map of Benton County, Constitution of the United States, miscellaneous matters &c. Chicago, Illinois Western Historical Co., 1878. Reference the book at FamilySearch Catalog
  • Hill, Luther B. History of Benton County, Iowa. From materials in the public archives, the Iowa Historical society's collection, the newspapers, and data of personal interviews. Lewis Pub, Chicago, IL.(1878?) Online at: FamilySearch Digital Library.
  • The history of Benton County, Iowa : containing a history of the county, its cities, towns, &c., a biographical directory of its citizens, war record of its volunteers in the late rebellion, general and local statistics, portraits of early settlers and prominent men... Western Historical Co., Chicago IL, 1878. Online at: Internet Archives, Benton GenWeb.
  • Iowa Indexes at EveryNameIndex.com — Select the county.

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Black Hawk CountyBuchanan CountyLinn CountyJohnson CountyIowa CountyPoweshiek CountyTama CountyIA BENTON.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Migration[edit | edit source]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Multiple Wars

Civil War
Civil War service men in Benton County 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 here:

- 5th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company G
- 8th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company D
- 13th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company G
- 16th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company I
- 18th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Company H
- 28th Regiment, Iowa Infantry, Companies A and D
- 47th Regiment, Iowa Infantry (100 days, 1864), Company C

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Online Naturalization Indexes and Records

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

In most counties in Iowa, probate records have been kept by the county judge. They include wills, fee books, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, probate ticklers, and dockets. The records are available at the county courthouse.

Online Probate Indexes and Records

School Records[edit | edit source]

Social Security Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

Iowa tax records complement land records and can supplement the years between censuses. Iowa's unique Old Age Assistance tax gives names, addresses and birth years. There may be gaps of several years. For more information, see the wiki page Iowa Taxation.

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Vital Records consist of births, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded by civil officials on registers, certificates, and other documents. Copies or extracts may be purchased from the Iowa Department of Public Health or the County Clerk's office. See also Iowa Vital Records.

Birth[edit | edit source]

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Death[edit | edit source]

Divorce[edit | edit source]

Research Facilities[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]

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 Affiliate Libraries

Libraries[edit | edit source]

Vinton Public Library
510 2nd Avenue
Vinton, IA 52349
319-472-4208
Email:vintonpl@vintonlibrary.com
Website

Blairstown Public Library
305 Locust St NW
PO Box 187
Blairstown, IA 52209
319-454-6497
Website

Norway Iowa Public Library
108 Railroad St
Norway, Iowa 52318
319-227-7487
Facebook

Museums[edit | edit source]

Belle Plaine Area Museum
901 Main St
Belle Plaine, IA 52208
319-434-6093
Website

Societies[edit | edit source]

Benton County Historical Society
PO Box 22
Vinton, IA 52349
319-472-4325
Email:bentoncohistorical@gmail.com
Website

Websites[edit | edit source]

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Iowa Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library; accessed on 11 April 2021.
  2. Iowa Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library; accessed on 11 April 2021.
  3. Wikipedia contributors, "Benton, Iowa," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benton_County,_Iowa.
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Iowa.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  5. Iowa Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library; accessed on 11 April 2021.
  6. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Iowa.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  7. Iowa Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library; accessed on 11 April 2021.
  8. Wikipedia contributors, "Benton County, Iowa," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benton_County,_Iowa, accessed 22 August 2019.