God Bless America       


to the Morgan County, West Virginia


    site for the WVGenWeb Project, part of the USGenWeb Project, a massive undertaking to provide free resources for genealogists. Morgan County was formed in 1820 from parts of Hampshire and Berkeley Counties and named in honor of General Daniel Morgan, prominent soldier of the American Revolutionary War.

     FIRE IN COURTHOUSE — Early morning on August 8, 2006, a fire raced through the second story of the Morgan County Courthouse. According to Assistant State Fire Marshal Ed Robinsonthe, as reported in the Morgan Messenger, the fire was accidental. "It was most probably caused by the original wiring above the drop ceiling above the courtroom,” Robinson said.

     The people in the court house have moved their offices to the former parking lot behind the courthouse. With regard to records, this is from an article written by Kate Shunney, which appeared in the August 16, 2006, edition of the Morgan Messenger — "Deeds, liens, wills, marriage, birth and death certificates pulled from the fire-proof vault in the County Clerk’s office just hours after the courthouse fire was extinguished have already been transported to Ft. Worth, Texas for preservation. Because some of the documents had suffered water damage, BMS Catastrophic will freeze-dry the pages to prevent further deterioration of the material.

     "County Clerk Debbie Kesecker said microfilm copies of some older documents have been stored for several years in a vault in Pennsylvania. She said her office should have their deed books and records back by the end of August" (I haven't heard if the records have been returned — I would suggest you call if you plan on visiting the courthouse to go through the record books — 304-258-8547). It was noted the office had a laptop computer for visitors to look for records already been entered into the county’s computer system.

      The article went on to say that Kesecker was directing people to the state’s office of Vital Statistics for certified copies of birth, marriage or death certificates.

     With regard to information that might not be on the county's computer system (if you plan to visit Morgan County), there are some other options.
     The Morgan County Historical and Genealogical Society — records include many family histories, deeds, wills, census records, obituaries, marriage records, cemetery records, death records, graveyard history, etc. These records (and the Society) are in the Public Library, 105 Congress Street, Berkeley Springs. Please scroll down the page for more information on the society.

     For official copies of birth and death records, contact the West Virginia State Vital Records Office, Vital Registration, Division of Health office in Charleston, West Virginia. A note on their webpage indicates the cost of these has gone up to $10 each and will be given only to immediate family members.

     Please browse through the updated pages here, particularly the Miscellaneous Research Links page, to find other options.

     And please, if you have written to the Morgan County County Clerk for any records, or if you were planning to write or to visit, be patient. I'm sure the folks at the courthouse will have their hands full for quite awhile.

Page UPDATED 9 February 2007

Please pardon our dust!
This site is in the process of being updated with new links and information.

Hello Morgan County researchers. My name is Marilyn Gouge and I am the new volunteer coordinator of this site. All of the GenWeb pages are maintained by volunteers who know how important it is to find information when you are not close to the areas of your ancestors. In the coming weeks I will be updating broken links, contacting researchers to ensure the addresses given on the Surnames, Lookups, and Morgan County webpages within this site are as current as they can be. If you have a website you previously listed and that site has changed locations, please notify me. Also, if you see your name on the Surnames Page and when you click on it, the incorrect address comes up, please notify me.

Please do not email me to do research for you. I don't live in Morgan County or even close to it (though my paternal ancestors are from Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia (Morgan, Jefferson and Berkeley counties), so I am not able to go to the courthouse or visit the library there or even recommend places to stay. Resources within your own area could include the Family History Centers; most public records are on microfilm from the Family Hisotry Center Salt Lake City Library and can be "borrowed" for a small fee. Look through the pages here. There are already a number of links listed that will take you to the courthouse, libraries, etc. and I will be including additional sites for gathering information, either through the internet or by writing to agencies. Please check back with us; changes will be taking place.

Thanks for your patience.


Connect with Folks Researching YOUR Morgan County Surname
Rootsweb Mailing Lists and Message Boards
Join a mailing list or browse and post messages on the boards 
The Morgan WVGenWeb County Archives
On Line Copies of Public Records
The Family Album
Pictures of Morgan County People and Places
Morgan County Courthouse
Researchers'  Web Sites
Queries from 1996
Queries from 1997
Queries Jan-April & Sept 18-20, 1998
Miscellaneous Research Links
Morgan County Historical & Geneological Society
County Courthouse Address
Resources Available for Lookups
Folks willing to do look ups for you

Cacapon River
County History
Rootsweb Guide
Lots of helpful information and links
Index of Historical Records
of Old Frederick & Hampshire Counties, Virginia
by Wilmer L. Kerns
Sims Index  to Land Grants
in West Virginia, 1762-1870
Berkeley & Morgan Counties
Search The Morgan Messenger
Obits from 1997-present
County Neighbors
1850 Morgan County Census
Transcribed from copy of actual records
NOTE  not yet proofread. 
Map Information —
this page being updated
Excerpts from the book
A Ridenour Family History
by Thomas Ridenour
Morgan County Churches, Historical and Modern
Will be updated soon
Morgan County Cemeteries—
this page being updated
Morgan County Post Offices, Historical
See Morgan County Communities
Morgan County Communities, Today and Yesterday
Updated 13 August 2006
Shaking YourFamily Tree
How To articles by a certified genealogist —
Myra Vanderpool Gormley
How to Cite Your Sources
by John Wyle
Family Relationship Chart
Deciphering Old Handwriting
East Speak
Occupations of Yesteryear

Morgan County Historical and Genealogical Society (MCH&GS)
Mr. Fred Widmyer, President
Box 52
Berkeley Springs, West Virginia 25411

The MCH&GS is open for anyone who has a desire to help preserve the history of Morgan County and the surrounding areas and is willing to help with the research done for its members and others who request help. Annual dues are $5.00 per person or $7.50 per couple. Meetings are held during the summer months, usually May to October, at the Morgan County Library.
There is no charge for people to go to the library to do their own research. The society will do research for those unable to go in person for $15.00 per hour with a minimum charge of $15.00. The charge for paper copies is $.25 per page of copied material plus shipping and handling charges based on current postal rates.
Hours of operation:
Monday and Wednesday — 9 a.m. to noon
Tuesday and Thursday — 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
1st Saturday of the month — 9 a.m. to noon
2nd Tuesday of the month — 5-8 p.m.
Friday — Call for an appointment:
Mr & Mrs Clyde Edwards, 304-258-2259 or Betty Ditto, 304-258-1251, or E-mail the society.
Thanks, Joy, for the information on the MCH&GS.

Please remember these folks are mostly volunteers and their time is precious. — Don't ask for vague information such as, 'please look up everything you have on Smith.' Try to be specific about the information you need (full names and probable dates).

You might also find the folks at the Berkeley County Library helpful in finding information that predates the formation of Morgan County in 1820. The Berkeley County Library's Genealogy Section

Morgan County Courthouse
County Clerk
Morgan County Commission
202 Fairfax St. Suite 100
Berkeley Springs, WV  25411


Sources Available for Lookup

The people listed below have graciously volunteered to look up information pertaining to Morgan County. By doing this, they are doing the genealogy community a tremendous favor. Many/most of these people have full-time jobs (besides genealogy) and they may live anywhere in the world. They simply own or somehow have access to sources for Morgan County...please do NOT expect them to go to Morgan County for you. Also BE SPECIFIC about the person you are asking about, as well as the resource you would like them to review. Do not say "hey...ya got any SMITHs in any of your books?"

As law-abiding citizens, we ask that no one violate copyright laws. Some publishers may have stated limits on what/how much can be in a look-up...our volunteers will let you know what limits there are, if any. Finally, be sure to thank our volunteers; without them our work and yours would be much more tedious and time consuming!

NOTE: Please put MORGAN COUNTY LOOK-UP in your subject...some of these people are on many mailing lists and volunteer to do look-ups for other areas — your request could get deleted if you do not put a meaningful message in the subject area.

References for Berkeley County are included here because Morgan was formed from Berkeley County. Information within parentheses generally reference the author or publisher of the book.

If YOU own any resource material and can return the favor by doing lookups for others, give me a holler.

Thanks to all our volunteers!

Source Name Person to contact
Morgan County, West Virginia Birth Records 1865-1904 (Turner) Staci Porter
Angel Rogers
Harry Grossman
Morgan County Death Records 1865-1903 (Davis) Nettie Grace
Harry Grossman
Sherry Neff
Staci Porter
Morgan County West Virginia Obituaries, Volume IV (Davis, Allemong, Mellott) Harry Grossman
Morgan County West Virginia Obituaries (Allemong and Davis); red book Harry Grossman
Morgan County West Virginia Obituaries 1936-1953; also 1907-1909 (Genealogical Society) Staci Porter
Harry Grossman
Obituaries Berkeley County Virginia (West Virginia) 1791-1855 (Historical Society) — because it includes the area of Morgan county for years 1791-1820 Harry Grossman
Graveyard History of Morgan County (Virginia )West Virginia (Genealogical Society) Harry Grossman
Sherry Neff
Nettie Grace
Morgan County West Virginia Graveyard Book Staci Porter
Morgan County West Virginia Marriage Records 1820-1865 (Genealogical Society) Harry Grossman
Sherry Neff
Staci Porter
Morgan County West Virginia Marriage Records 1865-1903 (Turner) Sherry Neff
Harry Grossman
Staci Porter
Marriage Records of Berkeley County 1781-1854 (Keesecker); because these include the area of Morgan County for years 1781-1820 Harry Grossman
Berkeley County (West) Virginia Deeds and Wills Abstracts, Deed Books 1-5 and Will Books 1-3 (Shuck); because it includes the area of Morgan County for the years 1772-1820 Harry Grossman
West Virginia Estate Settlements to 1850 (Johnston) for Berkeley County; because these include the area of Morgan County for the years 1772-1820 Harry Grossman
A Ridenour Family History by Thomas Ridenour Thomas Ridenour
1820, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 (Marsh), 1900 (Davis) Morgan County Census Harry Grossman
Index to the 1810 Census of Virginia (Bentley); because it includes surnames for the area of Berkeley and Hampshire counties that became Morgan County in 1820. Harry Grossman
Index to the 1820 Census of Virginia (Feldin); because it includes surnames for the first Morgan County Census Harry Grossman
1850 census Staci Porter
Sherry Neff
1860 census Staci Porter
Sherry Neff
1870 census Staci Porter
Sherry Neff
1880 Census of West Virginia vol 13 — Hampshire, Morgan, Berkeley and Jefferson counties ONLY Staci Porter
Social Security Death Index (SSDI) Infobase (free database) Ancestry Site

Morgan County Researchers' Web Sites

Meet the Family! Here are some folks' web sites who are doing research in Morgan County:

Charlene Smith — http://www.familytreemaker.com/users/s/m/i/Charlene-Smith/index.html

Pat Asher — http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~pasher/

Billy Yoho — http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~yoho/

If you have a web-site with Genealogy Information from Morgan County please notify me so I can add your link to the list.

 Didn't find what you were looking for? Try taking a look at these
Morgan County Neighbors

Berkeley County, West Virginia (east)
Hampshire County, West Virginia (southwest)
Frederick County, Virginia (southeast)
Allegany County, Maryland (northwest)
Washington County, Maryland (north)

contact site manager
Copyright: © 2006-2007 Marilyn Gouge
Copyright: © 1998-2003 Charlene T. Smith
All Rights Reserved.

last update: 9 February 2007