Friday, April 2, 2010

First Marriages in Johnson Co KS

The first marriages that occured in what became Johnson County, KS were those of the Shawnee tribe members.

The Shawnee followed their own native customs in choosing a mate and severing familial relationships. Missionaries began ministering to the Tribe as early as 1830 in Ohio, before their relocation to the Shawnee Reserve. After relocation from their native lands and hunting grounds, the Shawnee struggled to survive and asked for help from missionaries. The Baptist, Friends (Quakers), and Methodists all sent missionaries to aid the Shawnee. Each group developed their own method of ministery and aid.

After over a decade of ministering to the Shawnee, the Methodists strongly encouraged and campaigned for the Shawnee to practice Christian marriages as their form of legitimizing marriages. A few of the Shawnee that were ministered to by the Methodists chose to have a formal Christian marriage even though they were already considered married by Tribal standards. These marriages were recorded and preserved with the Shawnee (Methodist) Mission Steward's book and now transcribed and available on the Johnson Co KSGenWeb site under Missions -> Shawnee Marriages 1843-1857 and represent the first marriages in pre-Territorial Kansas.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Early Shawnee Methodist Mission Records

The first people to immigrate to the Shawnee Reservation in the Indian Territory that became Johnson Co, KS were the Baptist, Friends, and Methodist missionaries.

The Shawnee Mission (Kan.) Steward's Book contains the minutes of the earliest Methodist Conferences held in Johnson County, Kansas. From the collection of Charles Bluejacket, this work is held on microfilm by the Kansas State Historical Society. Many of the pages are very dark and some are completely unreadable. I requested the film on loan and did my best to capture the names of those who attended these meetings. Attendees included both Caucasian and Shawnee Indian Methodist leaders. This work also includes record of one Shawnee man's death.

Check out these newest additions to the Johnson Co KSGenweb site, listed under History -> Missions.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Genealogy Tip for 2010 Census

For those of us who are genealogists or family historians, the Federal census records are one of our most valued pieces of historical family data. Privacy laws hold the Federal census records as private for 72 years, so the 2010 census data will be available in 2082. Save your descendents time and money - make a digital or hard copy of your completed 2010 census before mailing it in and store it with your important family records!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

History of Johnson County

Another major section of the new Johnson Co KSGenWeb site is History. This section opens to a brief overview of the history of Johnson County and is filled with all sorts of interesting data.

In this section you can find old articles that have been transcribed and new articlees as well. There are links to the old Atlas images, all found online. Bios is a compilation of links to biographical sketches of some of the earliest pioneer settlers to the county.

Some census records have been transcribed and donated including parts of the first 1855 Territorial Census. Under Churches we have some new donations including an 1867 school roster to one of the earliest schools in the county.

The Military section contains a rost of 1883 Pensioners, 1907 Honored Dead, and WWII Honored Dead as well as links to statewide info. Miscellaneous contains all sorts of things, like family bible inscriptions, letters, and a garden club meeting.

The Past Towns section is full of lots of little towns that were abandoned, became ghost towns, and eventually disappeared with no trace. Pioneers contains a 1907 list of old Pioneers from as part of an annual celebration. And Schools contains school-related donations.

If you don't know where to look for something, remember to dig around in the History seciton!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

What's in the County Records

Since the JoCo KSGenWeb is newly updated I thought I'd take the first few entries to give you the grand tour! And the County Records section is the perfect place to start! It's chock full of data just waiting to be found!

County Records is a large collection of indexes to the records held at the Johnson County Archives. Each reference includes all the reference information you need to have the Archives get you a copy of the record so be sure to save all of that info in your genealogy reference section.

Births and Deaths  The State of Kansas required births and deaths to be recorded with the State in 1911. Prior to that, births and deaths were not recorded with the County. It's a bummer but we do have some other good stuff.

Divorces 1853-1882 Transcribed index to holdings at the Johnson County Archives.

Marriages 1857-1907 Transcribed index to holdings at the Johnson County Archives. Note that most of the early marriages were performed by curcuit ministers.

Naturalization Records N-V missing. Transcribed index to holdings at the Johnson County Archives. Also includes Enemy Alien Registrations. Timespan not given.

Tax and Land Contains an early delinquent tax list from an Olathe newspaper

Wills 1859-1968 Transcribed index to holdings at the Johnson County Archives.

Civil Court 1856-1969 Transcribed index to holdings at the Johnson County Archives. Contains plaintiff, defendent and charge.

Criminal Court 1861-1969 A-F only. Transcribed index to holdings at the Johnson County Archives. Contains plaintiff, defendent and charge.
Happy hunting!

The New Johnson Co KSGenWeb

Welcome to the companion blog for the brand new Johnson Co KSGenWeb site:!

I'm pleased to announce that, after many months of work, the JoCoKSGenWeb site has a new home and a new look and feel. The site is redesigned specifically to make it easier to use and search for surnames across all holdings. Items that were in text files in a seperate location are now included in webpages within the site.

The new site is organized into major sections:
  • Home provides general information and a link to this blog!
  • County Records contains tons of donated records transcribed from the Archives holdings
  • History is full of donated images and transcriptions of historical documents
  • Cemeteries has donated gravestone transcriptions for all the cemeteries
  • Obits also includes death notices and indexes
  • Surnames is a place you can  post county surnames you are researching
  • Local Resources is an organized section of links to area resources
  • Search allows you to search the site for your surnames!
So go have a look and happy searching! I hope you love the new site!

Johnson County KSGenWeb: