Thursday, October 28, 2010

St. Louis Court Records from 1787 to 1875 on line -- well, some of them

The Scout Report highlights an interesting online resource for Midwestern researchers whose people of interest may have stopped and stayed awhile at the gateway to the west (and the metropolis of southern Illinois), St. Louis. It's the St. Louis Circuit Court Historical Records Project from Washington University. Cases include civil, criminal and chancery (equity) actions and are searchable by plaintiff, defendant, year, action, and case notes. Some documents are as old as 1787 and some as recent as 1875, but most are from 1804 to 1835.

This is not primarily intended as a genealogical resource, since it is not an every-name index, and since from using the search engine it would appear that the cases available are limited to those categorized as having to do with four predefined categories: Lewis & Clark, freedom suits (involving slaves or those threatened with enslavement), the fur trade, and Native Americans.

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