Clackamas County, Oregon
This Site is part of
The ORGenWeb and The USGenWeb


My name is Martha and I will be your guide to all things "Clackamas County". I do not live in Oregon,
but have family that lived in various parts of the State for many years.
l will do my best to answer questions and find information that might contibute to your success as a family researcher.
I can be contacted by email. Please use this link

Our SC, Jan Bony  has 'left for greener pastures...'
She will be missed, her legacy lives on in the work she has done over the years,
and in her willingness to help others find Family.
Clackamas County Neighbors
Hood River ~ Marion
Multnomah ~
Wasco  Washington ~ Yamhill

History of Clackamas County

Oregon City became the county seat for Clackamas County. The city was built on a portion of Dr. John McLoughlin's land claim. In 1844 Oregon City was incorporated by the Provisional Legislature, making it the first incorporated city west of the Rocky Mountains. This area was the terminus for water transportation on the Willamette River and had been a meeting place for Indians, hunters, trappers, and Hudson's Bay Company voyagers for years.

The first major overland immigration to Oregon City occurred in 1842. Three years later Samuel Barlow established an immigrant route that ran from The Dalles, around the south side of Mt. Hood, and into Oregon City. The Barlow Road funneled thousands of immigrants into Oregon City and Clackamas County during the 1840s. Oregon City rapidly became the primary urban center in Clackamas County and dominated social and political life in Oregon during the provisional government period. The removal of the territorial capital from Oregon City to Salem in 1852 shifted most of the political activity to Salem. The creation of Multnomah County in 1854, at the request of Portland residents, removed Oregon's principal commercial city from Clackamas County as well as the county's access to the Columbia River.

Prior to construction of a courthouse, county records were housed in several locations in Oregon City, including the former provisional state house. Two of the locations burned but the county records were saved. In 1884 a frame and concrete structure was built at a cost of $145,000. In 1935 the county records were moved temporarily to rented quarters while a new courthouse was built. Using construction grants available through the Works Progress Administration the current courthouse was completed in 1937.

Clackamas County elected government is composed of five commissioners, a district attorney, assessor, clerk, sheriff, surveyor, and treasurer.

Heavily timbered, the county's geographical features include Mt. Hood and numerous rivers - the Willamette, Clackamas, Sandy, Pudding, Molalla, and Salmon. Since its creation, agriculture, timber, manufacturing, and commerce have been the county's principal activities. The population of Clackamas County has steadily increased from 1850. The 2011 population of 378,480 represented a significant increase over the 2000 population of 338,391 And from the Wiki

Oregon Base Map ~ Oregon Territory Map 1852
David Rumsey ~ Historic Map & Atlas Collection
Perry-Castaneda ~ Map Collection ~ Earthquake Fault Maps

American Georgaphical Society Library - Digital Map Collection
Humboldt State University Map Collection
Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps for Oregon~ Railroad Maps
And, of course, Google Earth
Bing Satellite Mapping [not updated since 2013]
I have access to the Library Edition of
'Historic Map Works'
Metsker's Maps, 1928 - Index
Metsker's Maps, 1937 - Index
Metsker Maps, 1951 - Index
Metsker Maps, 1966 - Index

All the files can be found here: Google Drive
[Note: The files are large,
you might want to download them for further study.]

The indexes are for Plat Maps, which give the owner's names as well as Business locations

I am happy to do lookups and send pages of interest. Contact: Martha

Trails West & Mining History
Overland Trail ~ Oregon Trail
Oregon Mining Maps ~ Stone Quarries and Beyond

'Ghost Towns in Oregon'
Ghost Towns, Mining Camps and Historical Sites
The Volcanoes of Oregon

"What's New"
 A new feature has been added:
New Databases for both Ancestry & Family Search
April: 2021 - Use this Link

Search Clackamas County

Biographies and Genealogical Information

There are a lot of Clackamas County Biographies already indexed and transcribed.
Some can be found here. There are more here.
There are Clackamas County bios in the USGenWeb Archives

The Centennial History of Oregon 1811 - 1912
Volume's II. III, IV
The S J Clark Publishing Company
Chicago, 1912
Index below for Clackamas Folk
Read Online or Download

Name Page #
Bellows, Carlton E 965
Boise, Reuben P 187
Boring, Joseph H 1008
Cross, Elmer E 742
Derby, William P 522
Epler, Fred J 1030
Hammersly, John B 1024
Herman, William Pickney 336
Holman, Daniel 637
Jack, William Sherman 305
Mattoon, O P 715
Miller, Fred J 685
Shaver, James W 78
Simpson, John T 605
Smith, Joseph L 810
Stangel, Joseph J 1027
Stewart, John 307
Van Buskirk, William 958
Yoder, Levi Henry 1028

An Illustrated History of the State of Oregon
H. K. Hines, Author;

Published by Lewis Pub. Co.,
Chicago, 1893
There is an index here, but it does not break down by County.
Search the Book using "Clackamas" as the search parameter

School Lists were found in the old Clackamas County Files.

The Family of George Wise & Sarah Tong
Wise-Tong Pioneers of Clackamas, OR
Arthur D Coleman, 1965

The TOC is here.
The book may be downloaded from the FS Catalog or
I can send scans - Martha

Early Oregonians:1800-1860
Use index above and then
Search Here

"Oregon Native Son"
Publication with Bio's and Sketches
1899-1900 Index
The Books can be downloaded
or I will send pages of interest.

Old Queries [Clues?]
I will do lookups in Archival Newspapers
Send query with Names, Possible Dates & Locations

USGW Archives
SOS Archival Records

Please Post Queries on Cyndie's List

All of the files linked below are on Google Drive.
The actual data can be found on FS & Ancestry
Canada ~ Cemetery, Funeral Homes, Coroner
Crime & Prison ~ Deaths & DC's ~ Marriages
 ~ Miscellaneous ~ Obituaries
Passenger Lists & Employment ~ Vital Odds

Here are Lists of the specific databases: 
Page 1, 2, 3

State Locations & Types of 'Gleanings'

Folks who went to California and left a 'Paper Trail'

Specific Records for Oregon: Multiple Databases

New Resource: California Digital Newspapers

This Site has a great collection of CA Newspapers,
but many of them have articles from
other States including Oregon.
A search using 'Clackamas County, Oregon results with articles starting with 1840 - 1849
Use this Link

Family Search: Historical Images
Records that are not available with the traditional FS Search
The Explanation:

The Resources are wonderful, but the search parameters and functions are intimidating to the novice FS Catalog Researcher.
The Types of Information:
Military, Cemetery, Deaths & DC's, Native American Census, Deaths & DC's, Divorces, Estate Records, Funeral Cards, Genealogical,  Homestead, Land [Certificates, Sales, Patents], Obituaries

Locations & Time Frame: Mollala, Lewis & Oregon City / 1844 - 1942

The following will help you get a handle on information thatcould be of value to your search for Family data.
The chart below will be a decent guide.
To access the Historical Images, log into your FS Account:
Click on Search, then at the top of the page: Historical Images:
You can begin with the search, but if you get lost or cannot figure it
all out, then use the chart I have created to access the information.

Backtrack to Search, Catalog, and plug in the DGS Film number of interest from the Charts in the 'Fiche-Film' slot.
Use the chart below for the Film #
Location Item / Records Film Dates
Lewis / Clackamas Military Record 8735858 Blank
Lewis / Clackamas Military Record 8735859 Blank
Molalla / Clackamas Cemetery, Funeral Cds, Name Changes, 
Newspapers,  Obituaries, Settlements
8624059 1945 - 1978
Oregon City / Clackamas Army, Bible, Births, Cemeteries, DC's, Deaths, 
Divorces, Estates, 
Genealogical Rec., Marriages
8218625 1846 - 1854
Oregon City / Clackamas Cem Plots, Cem Rec, Census, Family  8140308 1860 - 1870
Oregon City / Clackamas Cemetery & Genealogy Records 8218627 Blank
Oregon City / Clackamas Census, Land Entry Claim 8218626 1850
Oregon City / Clackamas Claim, Land, Patent, Tract Bk 8427928 25 Jul 1853-31Dec 1942
Oregon City / Clackamas Docket, Homestead, Land 8261360 1844 - 1915
Oregon City / Clackamas Docket, Land Entry, Native Amer., Orphan 8812572 1850 - 1920
Oregon City / Clackamas Homestead, Land, Patent  8261359 1 Jan 1859-7 Jul 1949
Oregon City / Clackamas Homestead, Land, Sale 8407371 1844 - 1942
Oregon City / Clackamas Land Cert, Land, Public 8407370 1854 - 1908
Oregon City / Clackamas Land Record 8256132 Blank
Oregon City / Clackamas Land Record 8422817 Blank
Oregon City / Clackamas Land Record 8422818 Blank
Oregon City / Clackamas Land Record 8422819 Blank
Oregon City / Clackamas Land Record 8422820 Blank
Oregon City / Clackamas Land Record 8422821 Blank
Oregon City / Clackamas Land Record 8422827 1852 - 1903
Oregon City / Clackamas Land, Military 8261356 10 Jun 1857-30 Jun 1908

Note: If you have trouble with either the Historical Images or the Catalog of Family Search, send along a note.

Note: Draft Registrations & Federal Census Records were not included

"The Fine Print"
The ORGenWeb Administrative Team
State Coordinator: Bob Jenkins
Assistant State Coordinator: Martha A Crosley Graham
Clackamas County Coordinator: Martha A Crosley Graham
Please see our ORGenWeb Copyright Disclaimer and other important information.
If in doubt about the copyright rules, please refer to Understanding Copyright
Links to web sites that are not part of the USGenWeb Project are provided for your convenience
and do not imply any endorsement of the web sites or their contents by The USGenWeb Project

Updated: 18 April 2021
Online Continuosly since 1996