Wabash County Marriages Introduction
Submitted by Author, Bill Currie
February 19, 2012
The following list of 443 marriage records from Wabash County, Illinois must be viewed as a working research tool. With the burning of the Wabash County Courthouse on April 5, 1857, resulting in 98% of all the County’s records being destroyed, including the loss of more than 32 years of marriage records, the genealogist with Wabash County roots could only hope for a Bible record with the date and place of marriage recorded or that their ancestors were married elsewhere.
This project has been long and ongoing for the last 25 years and at times has been very tedious. The Mt. Carmel Newspapers have been very helpful, but the office of the Mt. Carmel Register was also the unfortunate recipient of fires. If all the newspapers would have still been available from 1835-1857, not only would this collection be far more valuable, but the odds of completely “finishing” the marriages from the first 10 years of the county’s formation would be much greater.
All the known Mt. Carmel newspapers in existence have been consulted, including the most recent acquisitions from the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library in Springfield, Illinois (thank-you Jan P.,), three issues of the Mt. Carmel Register found in the newspaper collection of the Library of Congress (thank-you Amber P.,), and one issue of the Mt. Carmel Sentinel & Wabash Advocate residing in the catalogue of newspapers from the American Antiquarian Society in Worcester, Massachusetts (thank-you Andrew B.,) Also consulted was the “Private” Texas collection of Mt. Carmel Register Newspapers that were located in the early 1990's, and 16 years of marriages (1839-1855) from the St. Mary’s Catholic Church records in Mt. Carmel, Illinois. A special thank-you to Dorothy Mc., Dorothy M., Bob J. & Mike D. for their assistance in years past. Present Thanks to Janet and Claudia D. for helping to “finish” this project. I also send a sincere thank-you to Dawn D. for not only hosting the Genealogy Trails web site, but for allowing me to contribute Wabash County material.
Again, this collection should be utilized for research purposes only. The marriages listed here comprise close to 40%-50% of the total number of marriages that would have been recorded for Wabash County for the period Dec. 27, 1824 through Apr. 8, 1857. After comparing two other neighboring Illinois counties’ marriage registers for the time period 1825-1854, (Edwards County marriages total 883 and Clay County total- 867), Wabash County comes up short with only 382. This emphasizes all the still “missing” marriages. The Wayne County, Illinois Courthouse disasters did not help the research aspect of this situation, either.
Every known effort has been attempted to keep this “project” error-free. All obvious variant spellings of the surnames have tried to be included as well as a simplification of the source data, as no authors’ full names are included, but anyone familiar with Wabash County genealogy material should be able to locate the sources (the year of publication with page numbers are included) without difficulty.
Hundreds of hours of research were used to eliminate marriage records that did not occur in Wabash County. The Illinois State Archives Marriage Project was consulted, along with marriages of the neighboring counties of Edwards, Lawrence, Clay & Richland and the available marriage records from Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Kentucky and Tennessee. Excepting for the “confirmed” marriages as listed in the 1850 Wabash County Census, only two “No Dates” were used and their source material evidence was very strong. Almost all the records used in the following pages had to have at the very least a month (with the year.) No other circa or “year” dates were used, unfortunately, as there were a lot more of these records with every indication that those marriages occurred in Wabash County.
Anyone with information disproving any of the following marriages should contact me at the e-mail address listed below, but please provide adequate proof, such as a copy of the marriage record and/or what county and state taking place in. Anyone wishing to submit a marriage, must have a date, with at least the month and year (just the year will be not be accepted) and send scanned proof such as a Bible record, etc. In both situations, allow research time before the marriage is added or deleted.
Contact Bill Currie at: