Montcalm County was created on 2 Mar 1831 (Organized in 1850) and was formed from Michilimackinac County and Unorganized Land. Some early records before 1850 may be located in Ionia County. The County was named for French General Marquis de Montcalm is this county's namesake. His defeat and death in 1759 marked the end of the French and Indian War in North America. The County Seat is Stanton.
Counties adjacent to Montcalm County are Isabella County (northeast), Mecosta County (north), Gratiot County (east), Newaygo County (west), Ionia County (south), Kent County (southwest). Townships found in Montcalm County include Belvidere, Bloomer, Bushnell, Cato, Crystal, Day, Douglass, Eureka, Evergreen, Fairplain, Ferris, Home, Maple Valley, Montcalm, Pierson, Pine, Reynolds, Richland, Sidney, Winfield Townships. Cities, Towns and Communities include Carson City, Cedar Lake, Coral, Crystal, Edmore, Fenwick, Greenville, Howard City, Lakeview, McBride, Mcbrides, Pierson, Sheridan, Sidney, Six Lakes, Stanton, Trufant, Vestaburg.
Researchers often overlook the importance of court records, probate records, and land records as a source of family history information.
All departments below at located at the Montcalm County Courthouse, 211 W. Main Street, P.O. Box 368, Stanton, MI 48888 , unless a different address is listed below. NOTE: The date listed for each category of record is the earliest record known to exist in that county. It does not indicate that there are numerous records for that year and certainly does not indicate that all such events that year were actually registered. Courthouse was destroyed by Fire on February 16, 1905, although the county records were saved. The present courthouse was built in 1910.
Montcalm County Clerk has the following Records for: Births & Deaths: 1867 to present, Marriages & Divorces: 1867 to present, Naturalization and Census Records: Located at the State Archives in Lansing. . The Office is located at the County Courthouse, see address above for contact information. Phone: 989-831-7339 .
The County Clerk is responsible for keeping records of births, deaths, assumed names, co-partnerships, issuing and filing marriage licenses, gun permits, notary bonds and processing passports.
Montcalm County Register of Deeds has Land Records from 1838 and is located at the County Courthouse, see address above for contact information. Phone: (989)831-5226, x 237 .
The Register is the County's official recording officer for all legal documents pertaining to the transfers and encumbrances of all real estate property within the County. The Register also provides permanent storage for approved original subdivision plats, condominiums, land surveys and section corners.
Montcalm County Clerk of the Probate Court has Probate Records from 1855 and is located at the County Courthouse, see address above for contact information. Phone: (989)831-5226 .
The Court Adjudicates and disposes of cases involving property of persons who have died or become incompetent, interprets wills and trusts, commits the mentally ill when necessary and appoints guardians and conservators for minors, incapacitated individuals and individuals with developmental disability.
Montcalm County Clerk of the Circuit Court has Court Records from 1860 and is located at 639 N. State St., Stanton, MI 48888; Phone: (989) 831-3520 .
The Clerk provides a variety of functions for the court such as, but not limited to: filing and maintaing the official record for all cases that come before the court; providing staff to assist in the operation of the court; working with the Jury Commission and notifying all potential jurors to appear for jury duty; and, processing felony criminal cases bound over from the District Court.
County Treasurer - Property tax records at the county level usually date back to the first land records. Either the county treasurer or the register of deeds will be the custodian of these records.
Below is a list of online resources for Montcalm County Court Records. Email us with websites containing Montcalm County Court Records by clicking the link below:
Birth, marriage, and death records are connected with central life events. They are prime sources for genealogical information.
The State of Michigan Vital Records Office is located at 201 Townsend Street, Capitol View Bldg, 3rd Floor, Lansing MI 48913 (across the street from the state capitol - south side). The office hours are 8:00 am - 5:00 pm Mon-Fri, except for State holidays. They are open thru the lunch hour. If applying in person, you must submit your request by 3:00 pm in order to obtain same-day service. It can take up to 1-3 months to get a vital record from Michigan.
Below is a list of online resources for Montcalm County Vital Records. Email us with websites containing Montcalm County Vital Records by clicking the link below:
Few, if any, records reveal as many details about individuals and families as do government census records. Substitute records can be used when the official census is unavailable
Countywide Records: Federal Population Schedules that exist for Montcalm County, Michigan are 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880, 1890 (fragment, see below), 1900, 1910, 1920 and 1930.
Other Federal Schedules to look at when researching your Family Tree in Montcalm County, Michigan are Industry and Agriculture Schedules availible for the years 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. The Mortality Schedules for the years 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. There are free downloadable and printable Census forms to help with your research. These include U.S. Census Extraction Forms and U.K. Census Extraction Forms.
Below is a list of online resources for Montcalm County Census Records. Email us with websites containing Montcalm County Census Records by clicking the link below:
Genealogy Atlas has images of old American atlases during the years 1795, 1814, 1822, 1823, 1836, 1838, 1845, 1856, 1866, 1879 and 1897 for Michigan and other states.
You can view rotating animated maps for Michigan showing all the county boundaries for each census year overlayed with past and present maps so you can see the changes in county boundaries. You can view a list of maps for other states at Census Maps
You can view rotating animated maps for Michigan showing all the county boundary changes for each year overlayed with past and present maps so you can see the changes in county boundaries. You can view a list of maps for other states at County Maps
Below is a list of online resources for Montcalm County Maps. Email us with websites containing Montcalm County Maps by clicking the link below:
Military and civil service records provide unique facts and insights into the lives of men and women who have served their country at home and abroad.
The uses and value of military records in genealogical research for ancestors who were veterans are obvious, but military records can also be important to re-searchers whose direct ancestors were not soldiers in any war. The fathers, grandfathers, brothers, and other close relatives of an ancestor may have served in a war, and their service or pension records could contain information that will assist in further identifying the family of primary interest. Due to the amount of genealogical information contained in some military pension files, they should never be overlooked during the research process. Those records not containing specific genealogical information are of historic value and should be included in any overall research design.
Below is a list of online resources for Montcalm County Military Records. Email us with websites containing Montcalm County Military Records by clicking the link below:
The Repositories in this section are Archives, Libraries, Museums, Genealogical and Historical Societies. Many County Historical and Genealogical Societies publish magazines and/or news letters on a monthly, quarterly, bi-annual or annual basis. Contacting the local societies should not be over looked. State Archives and Societies are usually much larger and better organized with much larger archived materials than their smaller county cousins but they can be more generalized and over look the smaller details that local societies tend to have. Libraries can also be a good place to look for local information. Some libraries have a genealogy section and may have some resources that are not located at archives or societies. Also, take a special look at any museums in the area. They sometimes have photos and items from years gone by as well as information of a genealogical interest. All these places are vitally important to the family genealogist and must not be passed over.
Below is a list of online resources for Montcalm County Genealogical Addresses. Email us with websites containing Montcalm County Genealogical Addresses by clicking the link below:
Obituaries can vary in the amount of information they contain, but many of them are genealogical goldmines, including information such as names, dates, places of birth and death, marriage information, and family relationships.
There are many churches and cemeteries in Montcalm County. Some transcriptions are online. A great site is the Montcalm County Tombstone Transcription Project.
The earliest religious denomination in Michigan was the Roman Catholic church, established through a mission in 1668 at Sault Ste. Marie. Ste. Anne's, in Detroit, has parish records beginning in 1703.
Michigan Historical Collections in Ann Arbor holds large collections from the Presbyterian Church and the Protestant Episcopal Church, in addition to other denominations. Dutch Reformed church records are at Calvin College and Seminary Library in Grand Rapids; Finnish church records are deposited at the Finnish-American Historical Archives at Suomi College in Hancock. The Upjohn Library at Kalamazoo College in Kalamazoo has a large collection of Baptist archive material. Many early Detroit churches have their records deposited at the Burton Historical Collection-Detroit Public Library. The Michigan Historical Records Survey, WPA, completed an Inventory of the Church Archives of Michigan, and many of the church records from this inventory were published from 1936 through 1942.
The Library of Michigan in Lansing and the Burton Historical Collection have over 1,000 books of transcribed or published tombstone readings from Michigan cemeteries. To locate a cemetery in the state, consult the Michigan Cemetery Compendium. It lists most cemeteries in Michigan.
Below is a list of online resources for Montcalm County Cemetery & Church Records. Email us with websites containing Montcalm County Cemetery & Church Records by clicking the link below:
The use of published genealogies, electronic files containing genealogical lineage, and other compiled sources can be of tremendous value to a researcher.
When view family trees online or not, be sure to only take the info at face value and always follow up with your own sources or verify the ones they provide. Below is a list of online resources for Montcalm County Family Trees, web forums and other family type information. Email us with websites containing Montcalm County Family Trees, web forums and other family type information by clicking the link below:
Montcalm County was formed in 1831 from Ionia, its parent county. According to the 1990 census, the population of Montcalm County was 53,059. The County consists of 713 square miles of prime farm land, numerous communities and beautiful lakes. Stanton is the county seat.
According to records, Judge (laterGovernor) Epaphroditus Ransom, made the first purchase of land in what is now known as Montcalm County.
The first land transfer, other than those from government land grants was recorded on October 18, 1837 when Benjamin Young of Phelps, Ontario Co., New York transferred a parcel of land to Carso Craneof the same city in New York.
Newcomb J. Irelandwas the county's first Register of Deeds. He made his first entry a transfer of land from the State of Michigan to one Ebenezer Salyer.
The probable first settler wasfound in the wild lands of Montcalm County in the Spring of 1837, by Thomas Cornell, the Ionia County Surveyor. Mr. Cornell came upon Luther Lincoln and hisyoung son of about 13 years of age, living near the junction ofthe Flat River and the Black Creek.
The first marriage on the books of Montcalm County was that of Benjamin A. Weaverand Gertrude Stockholm. The marriage took placein Greenville on March 19, 1851. Wilson Mosher,a minister of the gospel performed the marriage.
First court proceedings in Montcalm County took place June 21, 1853 before JudgeMartin in Greenville. Both proceeding were divorce cases: Washington D. Coons vs. Martha E. Coons and Mary West vs. John West.
Most likely, the first white man to make a permanent home in Ferris Township, which included present day Home, Richland and Day Townships, was Edward Wolbert. He built a cabin in the corner of the township which would be atthe present day location of the area east of M-66 and north ofLake Montcalm Road.
In the spring of 1863, a group of ten pioneers, consisting of John Peoples and family, John's brother-in-law Frederick Bishop, John's un-married brother Hugh Peoples and their families, stopped at the remote cabin of Mr. Wolbert. They all built cabins in the area and started clearing land.
In 1854, a group of area residents presented a petition to the Board of Supervisors, asking that a new township be allowed. They wanted to call it Home Township. This was allowed and election ofofficers was held in April of 1865. The township records burnedin 1872 so no actual records have survived regarding the seelections. However, further records indicate that John Peoples was the first Supervisor.
The first marriage in the township was that of Hugh Peoples to Maria Wysick, who parents had settled in the eastern part of the township. This marriage took place July 4,1865.
Births were not recorded in the township until May of 1867, and it appears that the first white child born there was AnnaPeoples, daughter of John and Eliza Peoples.
The first death, according to the old history books was a Mrs. Rapp, probably the wife or mother of the early settler, Solomon Rapp.
The first buried in the Home Township Cemetery was probably Salina E. Beard, daughter of J. F. Beard and D. H.Beard. She died in August of 1866. The records of thecemetery burned, except for the plot map. No records areavailable of the early graves that were not marked.
There were few from the township that served in the army during the Civil War as the area was still very sparsely inhabited. The known soldiers were: Henry W. Hewes, James Ovenhouse, Leroy Park, Gilman J. Wright and John Arnold from Edmore; Moses Bennett, John Bush and Azariah Soule from Cedar Lake; Nelson G.Richardson, Lafayette Shepardson and Philo R. Smith from Wyman; James Gilson, Albert Jennings, Osmond S. Tower, Josiah H. Gibbs, James K. Train, Peters Stoddard Alonzo M. Wolaver. Surelythere were others that served, but records are sketchy.
The first school district was organized in the spring of 1865 with Orlando Evans as the first teacher.