Craighead County, Arkansas Genealogy

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United States Gotoarrow.png Arkansas Gotoarrow.png Craighead County

College of Jonesboro, Craighead County, Arkansas

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

County QuickStart:

Craighead County, Arkansas
Map of Arkansas highlighting Craighead County
Location in the state of Arkansas, United States Genealogy
Map of the U.S. highlighting Arkansas
Location of Arkansas in the U.S.
Founded February 19, 1859
County Seat Jonesboro
Address Craighead County Courthouse
511 South Main Street
Jonesboro, AR 72401
Phone: 870.933.4520

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Craighead County Courthouse
511 South Main Street
Jonesboro, AR 72401
Phone: 870.933.4520

County Clerk  has marriage and probate records from 1878 and tax records. Clerk Circuit Court has divorce records from 1878 and land records from 1900[1]

Beginning years for Craighead County, Arkansas Genealogy government records[2]
Birth Marriage Death Court Land Probate
1914* 1878 1914* 1878 1900 1878
*State birth and death records began in 1914. Limited compliance until 1920's

Government and Related Websites[edit | edit source]

County Government and other Local Websites (unofficial site) Clerks have jurisdiction over birth certificates, death certificates, marriage licenses, land use, land rights, real estate, and other court records. Site provides links to unofficial websites with online records (unofficial site) Provides links to County officials and public records

History[edit | edit source]

Parent County[edit | edit source]

County seat: Jonesboro [3]

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

For animated maps illustrating Arkansas county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Arkansas County Boundary Maps" (1813-1925) may be viewed for free at the website.

Variant Spellings[edit | edit source]

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

1869,1878 All records were destroyed by a fire in 1869 and again in 1878.

Places/Localities[edit | edit source]

Town/city records in the FamilySearch Catalog

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

Neighboring Counties[edit | edit source]

Dunklin County, Missouri  • Greene  • Jackson  • Lawrence  • Mississippi  • Poinsett

Craighead CountyMississippi CountyPoinsett CountyJackson CountyIndependence CountySharp CountyLawrence CountyGreene CountyClay CountyRandolph CountyWhite CountyWoodruff CountyCross CountyCrittenden CountyDunklin CountyPemiscot CountyLauderdale CountyTipton CountyShelby CountyFayette CountyDyer CountyLake CountyARCraighead (2).jpg

History Timeline[edit | edit source]

Emphasis for this timeline is on events that affected migration, records, or record-keeping. Unless otherwise mentioned, the events below were taken from the Craighead County page on the website, The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History and Culture. [4]

  • 1803 (pre) - Some groups of Shawnee, Delaware, and Cherokee moved west of the Mississippi River and through the area.
  • 1811-1812 - The New Madrid Earthquakes of 1811–1812 kept many potential settlers away from northeast Arkansas and induced the few Native Americans there to move elsewhere.
  • 1817 - Immigration to the area began increasing due to allayed fears of earthquakes and the attractiveness of the bounties given to veterans of the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812.
  • 1820 - An act of Congress continued the land bounty program.
  • 1850 - The Bounty Land Act in 1850 allowed for veterans of the Mexican War (1846–1848) to obtain land warrants.
  • 1850 - The U.S. Congress granted the state of Arkansas all swamp and overflow lands, many of which were in the region now included in Craighead County.
  • 1859 February 19 - Crighead County was formed.
  • 1869-1885 - A high incidence of courthouse fires in Jonesboro destroyed many of the county’s early documents.
  • 1906 - Jonesboro’s growth was enhanced with the creation of City Water & Light (CWL) as a municipal utility.

Genealogy Resources[edit | edit source]

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

African Americans[edit | edit source]

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Online Craighead County, Arkansas cemeteries
from state and national resources
Search for names of people
in Craighead County
Get a list of cemeteries
(then click to names of people)
Find printed records
(Often more complete)
  • Find A Grave Click "Refine Last Search" on the left, enter a name, click "Search"
  • Billion Graves Enter a name and click "Search" (Statewide. Can search by county, but many with no results.)
  • Find A Grave Click Search for a Cemetery on the right, click All Countries - click United States, click State, click County and search.

More cemetery lists

Census[edit | edit source]

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Court[edit | edit source]

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

  • Probate Records 1878-1971 Craighead County portion of the collection: Arkansas Probate Records, 1817-1979: Arkansas Probate Records, 1817-1979 FamilySearch Historical Collections (Free, browse images)
    • Includes Administration and guardian bonds 1899-1936; Administration bonds and letters 1878-1923; County Court records 1878-1884; Dockets 1887-1892; Guardian bonds 1878-1938; Letters of administration and guardianship 1884-1903; Probate records 1878-1927; Wills 1886-1930.

Genealogy[edit | edit source]

Land and Property[edit | edit source]

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

  • Stuck, Charles Albert. The story of Craighead County : a narrative of people and events in northeast Arkansas. Jonesboro, Arkansas : C.A. Stuck, c1960.

Maps[edit | edit source]

Military[edit | edit source]

Civil War[edit | edit source]

Regiments. Service men in Craighead County, Arkansas 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 Craighead County, Arkansas Genealogy:

- 8th Battalion, Arkansas Infantry (Confederate), Company E

Online Records

Naturalization[edit | edit source]

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Finding More Arkansas Newspapers Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Craighead newspapers in online catalogs like:

  • Arkansas Online Historical Newspapers - identifies historical archived and digitized newspapers available online on both free and pay-to-access websites. Includes newspapers for Craighead County.

Occupations[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Online Probate Records

Taxation[edit | edit source]

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

See also How to order Arkansas Vital Records

Birth[edit | edit source]
  • 1947-1965 - Craighead County Birth Index 1947-1965. Batch C735504 at FamilySearch - free.[5]
Marriage[edit | edit source]
Death[edit | edit source]
Vital Record Substitutes[edit | edit source]

Genealogy Societies and Libraries[edit | edit source]

Major catalogs for hard copy collections of Craighead County, Arkansas Genealogy
Books, microfilm, or manuscripts of genealogical records
FamilySearch Catalog Select topics. For towns, click here.
WorldCat Click an item for libraries near you. For more information, see WorldCat Online Catalog.
Allen County Public Library Located in Indiana, they are heavily involved in digitizing much of their collection.
Arkansas History Commission Select the county Arkansas state agency involved in organizing, digitizing, and maintaining the records of state and local history.
Local libraries and Arkansas Archives and Libraries may suggest other catalogs

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. See family history center for more information. Search the online FHC directory for a nearby family history center.

Societies[edit | edit source]

Genealogy Society Of Craighead County 315 W Oak, Ave, Jonesboro, AR 72401 870.935.5133

Websites[edit | edit source]

Sites with online indexes or images of records
ARGenWeb Free Data may be submitted by individuals or complete transcriptions
USGenWeb Archives Free Data may be submitted by individuals or may be complete transcriptions
RootsWeb Free Data may be submitted by individuals or may be complete transcriptions
Sites that search for links pertaining to Craighead County, Arkansas Genealogy
Linkpendium Free Click links. Some sites they link to may have fees ($)
CyndisList Free Click links. Some sites they link to may have fees ($) Free family history resources and government records

Social networking sites pertaining to Craighead County, Arkansas Genealogy Craighead County, AR Genealogy Forum Craighead County Message Board

References[edit | edit source]

  1. The Handybook for Genealogists : United States of America, 10th ed., (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), p. 67.
  2. Alice Eichholz, Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, 3rd ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry Pub., 2004), 65-67. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27rb 2004.
  3. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  4. Nancy Hendricks, The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture, ( : accessed January 12, 2016), “Craighead County.”
  5. 5.0 5.1 Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at
  6. FamilySearch Wiki contributors, "Arkansas, County Marriages - FamilySearch Historical Records," in FamilySearch Wiki, accessed 18 April 2013.