Ventura County, California Facts
Ventura County, California genealogy and family history research page. Identify links to record collections, history, and genealogy resources to help you locate your own Ventura Co., ancestors. Get going by constructing a Free Family Tree.
Ventura County Facts
- Government Website: http://portal.countyofventura.org
- County Seat: Ventura
- Created Date / Origin: March 22, 1872 from Santa Barbara County
- Boundary Changes:
- Most of the county came from territory in Santa Barbara County from 1850 to 1872 when it was moved to Ventura County.
- Territory was in San Luis Obispo County from 1850 to 1872 when it was moved to Ventura County.
- Territory in Los Angeles County from 1850 to 1851, was in Santa Barbara County from 1851 to 1872 when it was moved to Ventura County.
- Territory in Santa Barbara County from 1850 to 1872, was in Los Angeles County from 1872 to 1881, when it was added to Ventura County.
- Territory in Los Angeles County from 1850 to 1851, and in Santa Barbara County from 1851 to 1872, was in Los Angeles County again from 1872 to 1881, when it was added to Ventura County.
- Named After: In 1782 the Mission San Buenaventura was founded as San Buenaventura (now known as Ventura). Buenaventura is composed of two Spanish words, buena meaning “good” and ventura meaning “fortune.”
- Bordering Counties: Santa Barbara County (west), Kern County (north), Los Angeles County (east)
- Cities & Towns: Camarillo, Fillmore, Moorpark, Ojai, Oxnard, Port Hueneme, Santa Paula, Simi Valley, Thousand Oaks, Ventura
- CDPs ( census-designated place) Include Casa Conejo, Channel Islands Beach, El Rio, Meiners Oaks, Mira Monte, Oak Park, Oak View, Piru
- Other Communities: Bardsdale, Bell Canyon, La Conchita, Lake Sherwood, Newbury Park, Point Mugu, Saticoy, Somis
Ventura County Societies and Family History Resources
A list of Ventura County Historical and Genealogical Societies, Forums, Message Boards, Libraries, Archives.
- California State Genealogy Network (facebook.com)
- Ventura County Genealogical Society, P.O. Box 24608, Ventura, CA 93002; Archives
- Ventura County Historical Society, 100 East Main Street, Ventura 93001-2698; (805) 653-0323
- Moorpark Historical Society, PO Box 662, Moorpark, CA 93020; 805-529-1373
- Ventura County, California Message Boards (boards.ancestry.com) read and post messages about your ancestors in Ventura County
- Ventura County, California Genealogy Forum (genforum.genealogy.com) read and post messages with other genealogy researchers for Ventura County
- USGenWeb Archives for Ventura County (usgwarchives.net)
Ventura County Courthouse and Government Records
Researchers often overlook the advantages of Ventura County court, probate, and land files as a useful resource of genealogical details. Hidden away in California courthouses and archives everywhere tend to be the dreams and frustrations of the many California inhabitants.
The possibilities are great that your potential forefathers have left a detailed document of at least a number of facets of their lives in the Ventura County court records. Even if your ancestors is not mentioned in a Court case, contemplate all of the other methods that could have lead to her or him showing up in court records.
Courthouse History - The second of Ventura County's courthouses was turned over to the City of San Buenaventura for use as its city hall after construction of a new county center in 1978. This ornate building, which features a series of gargoyle-like monks' faces along the façade and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is dramatically situated on a hill with full views of the city and the Channel Islands. One of the most celebrated defense attorneys who practiced at the courthouse was Erle Stanley Gardner, the creator of the Perry Mason mystery series, who worked here in the 1920s and 1930s.
Remember to get in touch with the clerk's dept to verify hours, mailing address, fees and other specifics prior to visiting or seeking information because of in some cases changing contact details. The Department Offices DO NOT DO RESEARCH. The data files are readily available to interested parties, barring private issues. A good number of employees will assist persons in obtaining the materials, but it's up to the person to do the research.
Some counties encompass land settled in the eighteenth century; their records pre-date county formation. Land transactions and vital records recorded in the county are at the county recorder's office. The county clerk general has probate books and files from the county's superior court, civil court records, and naturalizations. Divorces may be in either place, depending on how filed.
The following facts indicates whatever marriage, birth, death, land, wills, and court records will be in Ventura County. The years indicated below are considered the first widely known records for this county. Land was later added from Los Angeles County in 1881.
- Ventura County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
- Ventura County Recorder-Clerk is s responsible for examination and recording of all documents presented for recording that deal with establishing ownership of land in the County or as required by statute; administers the real property transfer tax law and maintains a permanent record and indexes of all documents for public viewing plus providing certified copies requested by the public; recording of all lawful documents such as deeds, deeds of trust, judgments, liens, affidavits, Uniform Commercial Code Financial Statements, etc; and the filing of Births, Deaths, and Marriages.
- Address: 800 South Victoria Avenue, LN 1260, Ventura, CA 93009
- Phone: (805) 654-3666
- Birth / Death Records: 1872
- Marriage Records: 1873
- Land Records: 1871 (Alcalde records from 1782; county land records begin 1871)
- Ventura County Clerk of Superior Court has probate books and files from the county's superior court, civil court records, and naturalizations. Divorces may be here or in the Recorders Office, depending on how it was filed.
- Probate Records: 1873
- Court Records: 1873
- Ventura County County Treasurer / Tax Collector
- California Office of Vital Records has copies of birth, marriage, divorce and death records. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in California for current fees and application process. Birth, marriage, and death records are connected with central life events.
Ventura County Links
The following are web links to Genealogy, Records and Resources relevant to Ventura County. A majority of these genealogy links fall into 3 categories: Business Sites, Private Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some require a payment. This is basically a listing which has been gathered or submitted. I do not recommend or promote one genealogy site above another. Feel free to suggest your own preferred Ventura County genealogy or family history associated sites.
Ventura Co. CA Books, Newspapers & Publications
- Press-Courier (Oxnard, California) (search.ancestry.com)
- Oxnard Courier (Oxnard, California) (search.ancestry.com)
- Oxnard Daily Courier (Oxnard, California) (search.ancestry.com)
- Oxnard Press Courier (Oxnard, California) (search.ancestry.com)
- Historical Newspapers from California (1813 - 1978) (genealogybank.com) Easily identify names and keywords in over 450 million articles, obituaries, marriage notices, birth announcements along with other items written in over 2,800 historical U.S. newspapers. Completely new content added each month!
- Ventura County, California Books (amazon.com)
- California Newspapers
- Search California Obituaries (1985 to current) (genealogybank.com) Over 28 million obituaries containing helpful information such as names, dates, places of birth, death, marriage and family information make this the most complete collection from the 20th and 21st centuries - 1,100 U.S. newspapers.
- Ventura County California Genealogy Books (books.google.com)
Ventura Co. CA Birth, Marriage & Death Records
Ventura Co. CA Court, Probate Land and Tax Records
Ventura Co. CA Census Records
Ventura Co. CA Cemeteries & Graveyards
Ventura Co. CA Church & Bible Records
Ventura Co. CA Family Websites, Pictures & Histories
- California Pioneer Project - The California Pioneer List (CPL) is a list of settlers to California who migrated to or were born in California prior to 1880 (included in the 1880 California Census) and obtained from those sent (e-mailed) directly from individuals doing genealogical research.
Ventura Co. CA General and History Websites
Ventura Co. CA Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers
Ventura Co. CA Military Records
- California Military Records (fold3.com) gives you easy access to military records, stories, photos, and personal documents of the California individuals that served. Great for Ventura County genealogists, researchers, historians and more.
Ventura Co. CA Schools & Directories