Pikes Peak Genealogical Society

El Paso County, CO, Genealogy Resources

Welcome! We hope this page:
  • Helps you find your El Paso County, Colorado, ancestors and their history.
  • Helps local residents learn how and where to do genealogy.
If you are not local and would like lookups in Pikes Peak Library District's Special Collections or other local repositories, see Research Help. If you know of other useful sources to add to this page or can report a broken link, please let us know.
 
El Paso County was formed in 1859 from old Arapahoe County in Kansas Territory. On 1 November 1861 it became one of 17 original counties in Colorado Territory. On 23 March 1899, what is now Teller County was separated from El Paso County. The county seat is Colorado Springs. One of the best online sources for the county is the Pikes Peak NewsFinder, an online index at Pikes Peak Library District with some links to document images.
 
RESOURCES
 
Adoption
Cemeteries
Census Records
  • 1885 Colorado State Census. Free at FamilySearch, also on Ancestry.com
  • 1860–1940 federal censuses are available for Colorado on FamilySearch, Ancestry.com, HeritageQuest, Fold3, Mocavo. In 1860, what is now El Paso County was enumerated in Arapahoe County, Kansas Territory. Before 1899, El Paso County included nearly all of what is now Teller County.
Church Records
  • Catholic Church: The Diocese of Colorado Springs maintains within the Office of the Chancellor records for Roman Catholic churches across central Colorado. Archivist Raymond Kelley, (719) 636-2345, accepts research requests over the telephone and will provide telephone replies after examining the microfilm and extracting the information as time is available. There is currently no charge for this service. Individuals may not access the microfilm/books to do their own research.   
  • The weekly Intermountain Catholic newspaper, 1899-1910, held online by Chronicling America, Library of Congress, includes a column of news from the Colorado Springs Catholic community.
  • Episcopal Church: Epiphany Parish Register, Good Shepherd Parish Register, Grace Church Parish Register, St. Stephen's Parish Register; mostly baptism, marriage, burial entries for various years. Registers are indexed and images viewable at Pikes Peak NewsFinder.
  • First United Methodist Church, archivist Brenda Hawley, 420 N. Nevada Ave., Colorado Springs, CO 80903. Founded 1871, first church in Colorado Springs.
Directories
In addition to providing names and addresses of residents, city directories also usually offer street guides, information on city, county, and state governments, election precincts, lists of churches and clergy, hospitals and sanitariums, schools and colleges, businesses, labor organizations, clubs, societies, and secret organizations. The Colorado Springs directory often also contains Manitou Springs and Colorado City.
  • Colorado Springs city directories, PPLD, online all extant editions, 1879–1922.
  • HeritageQuest has online most Colorado Springs city directories, 1897–1963. If you hold a Pikes Peak Library District library card, select "HeritageQuest" on this page, [enter password], then click "City Directories."
  • Special Collections, PPLD, 20 N. Cascade, Colorado Springs, CO, paper and/or microfilm copies for all extant editions, 1879–present.
  • El Paso County (Including Teller County) Rural Directory (microfilm reel for the year 1937-38 also contains: 1947, 1949, 1951, 1955, 1962, and 1969; 1972 as book on shelves), Special Collections, PPLD.
  • Ancestry.com ($) has most Colorado Springs editions, with some breaks, through 1961.
  • Telephone books, most years from 1907 to present, PPLD Special Collections microfilm,  384.6 C7192CM; covers county addresses not included in city directories.
Court Records / Law Enforcement
Funeral Homes and Mortuaries
  • List of funeral homes, mortuaries, and undertakers. Compiled by the El Paso County Cemetery Project, the list includes facilities throughout Colorado. Some may no longer be in business.
  • Nolan Funeral Home records, Colorado Springs, including Beyle Brothers, Old Colorado City, which it acquired: roll 1: 1906-17, roll 2: 1897-1914, roll 3, 1910-37; PPLD Special Collections microfilm: 363.75 N787F R.1-3.
  • Colorado Funeral Service History to 1997
History
Land and Property Records
    Copies of original records are available for 25 cents per page. They may be viewed for free at the clerk and recorder's office.
 
Law
Maps
Medical
Military
El Paso County is or has been home to many U.S. military installations, including:
  • Index of Soldier Separation documents held by El Paso County Clerk & Recorder, 1944 to present. To narrow search select "Soldier Separation" under Document Type field. Includes members of the armed forces who have recorded their military separation documentation with the county for safe keeping. These documents are available only to the veteran or next of kin. But this index does provide evidence of full name, connection to county at date of registration, and separation from military before that date.
  • Fort Carson: Post Guide & Telephone Directory, held by PPGS, Special Collections: 1962, 1964, 1965, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 2001, 2009, 2016 
Mining
Naturalization
Newspapers
  • PPLD Pikes Peak NewsFinder index with Gazette 1871–present, Colorado City [now part of western Colorado Springs] Iris, Weekly Gazette,  Colorado Springs Independent, Colorado Springs Sun, Denver Post, El Paso County Democrat, Free Press, Out West, Manitou Journal, Pueblo Chieftain, Rocky Mountain News, Security Advertiser & Fountain Valley News, and seven early Cripple Creek newspapers. Various years are indexed and may not be complete. Request free copies of articles online from PPLD Special Collections. Some article images are linked to the index.
  • PPLD has the Colorado Springs Gazette, 1988–present online; access is free with library card. From PPLD.org, select "Magazines/Newspapers," then "America's News," a GenealogyBank product. Enter login. Select Gazette, then desired source, usually "Newspaper." Highly configurable text searches are allowed, or a particular newspaper may be selected by date.
  • Ancestry.com ($) has Colorado Springs Gazette, 1873-78, 1878-87, 1887-94, 1900-15; Weekly Gazette, 1879-82, 1884-86, 1888-95, 1897-1900; Out West, 1872.
  • GenealogyBank.com ($) has Colorado Springs Gazette, 1896–1922 and Eastonville World, 1894-95. Searchable on all words.
  • Newspapers.com ($) has Weekly Gazette, 1872-1906, incomplete, and Colorado Springs Gazette-Telegraph, 1960-1978, incomplete. Searchable on all words.
  • NewsBank has the Colorado Springs Gazette, 2 Apr 1988–present. Free access with Denver Public Library card, which is available free to anyone with a library card from any Colorado public library. (Click www.denverlibrary.org, Research Sources, Newspapers, Access World News, Colorado, Gazette.)
  • Colorado Historic Newspapers has Gazette, 1873-78; Out West, March–December 1872; Colorado Mountaineer, 1876–77. Free.
  • Colorado Springs Gazette Archive ($), www.gazette.com; from the Gazette's webpage: "The Gazette archive contains text-only archives from April 2, 1988, to November 30, 2002. Beginning December 1, 2002, the archive was expanded to include an electronic edition of the newspaper, which features searchable PDFs. These more recent issues are fully text searchable and reflect the full content and layout of the printed Gazette." Available to e-subscribers.
  • Special Collections, Tutt Library, Colorado College, has bound volumes of El Paso County Democrat, which has news from rural El Paso County communities. Not indexed, but easily searchable by community for a given period.
  • Current El Paso County newspapers include: Colorado Springs Gazette, Pikes Peak Bulletin (Manitou Springs, 2001- ), Tri-Lakes Tribune (Monument), Colorado Springs Independent.
  • African American Voice (1991-present), monthly, Colorado Springs, includes links to archival issues from 2007.
Obituaries
  • PPLD Pikes Peak NewsFinder index with Gazette 1871–present; some years from the 1970s are not fully indexed; Colorado City [part of  Colorado Springs since 1917] Iris, Colorado Springs Sun, and other newspapers. Request free copies of articles online from PPLD Special Collections.
  • www.legacy.com
  • FamilySearch, GenealogyBank Obituaries, 1980-2014, index
Occupations and Businesses/Organizations
  • Look up Colorado licensed professionals or organizations at DORA, the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies: accountants, medical/dental/mental health/veterinary, trades (plumbing, electrical, barbers/cosmetology), funeral homes, architecture, and more. Includes current, expired, cancelled, and revoked licensees. Searchable by name or portion of name. Licensee mailing address available from occupation download link.
  • Colorado business search: includes images of historic and current reports for businesses and nonprofit organizations. Click on "Filing history and documents" to see principles' names and addresses.
  • Used bookstores specializing in local historical materials:
Oral Histories
Pensions
People
Links to information on prominent people in the Pikes Peak region
Photographs
Place Names
 
Probate/Wills
School Records
Taxation
Vital Records
Birth Records
  • Birth certificates, State of Colorado
  • Birth certificates, El Paso County Health Department
  • Pikes Peak NewsFinder: Search for births by parents’ last name(s). Not yet complete for some years, but names are continuing to be added. Digital images of microfilmed copies may be requested for free from the library if not already available.
  • Entries in the Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 at Ancestry.com ($) include date and place of birth (usually a town or county) and parents' names. You can search on selected fields, including names and place of birth.
Marriage Records
Divorce Records
Death Records
Death certificates are available for $20 from the state or the El Paso County Health Department. Certificates for deaths older than 75 years are public record. Certificates 25 to 75 years old require a simple family tree to demonstrate some kinship to deceased. Certificates for deaths less than 25 years old have more stringent requirements; see instructions on back of form.
  • Death Certificates, State of Colorado
  • Death Certificates, El Paso County Health Department
  • Pikes Peak NewsFinder has death announcements and obituaries from area newspapers.
  • 1870 El Paso County Mortality Schedule extraction
  • 1880 El Paso County Mortality Schedule extraction
  • 1885 El Paso County Mortality Schedule, available at U.S. Federal Census Mortality Schedules, 1850-1885, Ancestry.com
  • El Paso County autopsy reports by the county coroner's office are public records and can be requested by e-mail. It's best to have evidence (death certificate, newspaper account) that an autopsy was performed before requesting one.
  • Homicides of the Colorado Springs Area, 1872 to Present, vols. 1-6, compiled by Dwight Haverkorn, Special Collections, PPLD, 20 N. Cascade, Colorado Springs. Call no.: SC 364.152 H767, indexed at Pikes Peak NewsFinder.
  • El Paso County Coroner's Record, 1882-1933, 1933-42 at Colorado State Archives: Colorado State Archives Finding Aids Quick Index
  • Colorado Springs Death Register, 1871-1920, Pikes Peak NewsFinder, has information on people who died in Colorado Springs and were buried here or shipped elsewhere, as well as people who died elsewhere and were shipped in for burial in city-owned Evergreen Cemetery. Some of the later years have information on people who died in other parts of El Paso County.
  • The Social Security Death Index is an online searchable database of names of deceased individuals whose deaths were reported to the Social Security Administration.  It has been kept since 1962, when operations were computerized. The index includes about 50 percent of deceased persons from 1962 to 1971 and about 85 percent of deceased persons from 1972 to 2005. It also includes a few deaths from 1937 to 1961. Beginning in 2014, rules governing the SSDI changed. Records for the most recent three years are not available.
Voters
 
Yearbooks
  • Special Collections, PPLD, has a good collection of Colorado Springs high school and college yearbooks.
  • Can you donate a yearbook? Here's a list of local yearbooks Special Collections lacks for its collection.
  • Ancestry.com ($) has a number of yearbooks from Colorado Springs high schools and college. See U.S. Yearbook Collection.
     REPOSITORIES
 
Archives
Libraries
  • Special Collections, Penrose Library, Pikes Peak Library District, Colorado Springs. Also has archives.
    • Databases available from home with a library card include HeritageQuest, 19th Century U.S. Newspapers, and Newspaper Archive.
    • Databases available at any PPLD branch library include Ancestry.com Library Edition  and Fold3. You may also log on to these databases with your laptop computer from the branch libraries.
    • American Ancestors database from New England Historic Genealogical Society may be accessed only on computers at PPLD's Special Collections.
  • Special Collections, Tutt Library, Colorado College, Colorado Springs.
    • Has on microfilm Rocky Mountain News, 1859--Dececember 1964, and Denver Post Jan. 1965--2012.
  • Stephen H. Hart Library, History Colorado, Denver; has the best collection of microfilmed Colorado newspapers in state.
  • U.S. Air Force Academy Libraries
FamilySearch Centers
Subscription databases available for free at all FamilySearch Centers include Ancestry.com, FindMyPast.com, Fold3.com, MyHeritage.com, Access Newspaper Archives.
 
 FamilySearch Center Hours
  Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
Broadmoor     10-4 1-9 2-9 10-4  
North     10-4 10-1, 6-9 6-9* 10-1 10-1
East   10-1 7-9 10-1      
Fountain     10-1, 6-9 6-9
10-1, 6-9
   
Calhan     10-2 10-2, 6:30-9 6:30-9    
PPLD 1-5 9-9 9-9 9-9 9-9 10-6 10-6
Call to verify holiday and snow closures.
*Closed first Thursday.
†Special Collections at PPLD is a FamilySearch affiliate library. Images restricted to Family History Centers will soon be accessible via the Special Collections computers PPLD has its own set of online genealogy resources, not the same as those offered by Family History Centers.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Colorado Springs [Broadmoor] FamilySearch Center
150 Pine Ave.
Colorado Springs, CO 80906
719-634-0572
 
Snow Days: If inclement weather should cause District 12 (Cheyenne Mountain) or District 11 (Colorado Springs) to close, the Family History Center will also close.  On days when a 2-hour delay is called by either of those school districts, the morning shift of the FHC will be closed (this applies to Tuesdays and Fridays only).
 
North Family Discovery Center
8710 Lexington Drive (at Research)
Colorado Springs, CO 80920
East FamilySearch Center
4955 Meadowland Blvd.
Colorado Springs CO 80918
719-268-9185
CO_ColoradoSprings@ldsmail.net
 
Fountain FamilySearch Center
1310 Aeroplaza
Colorado Springs, CO 80916
719-550-2867
CO_Fountain@ldsmail.net
No film-ordering services.
 
Calhan FamilySearch Center
900 Monument St.
Calhan, CO 80808
719-347-0199
CO_Calhan@ldsmail.net
 
Closed the week of Thanksgiving. Closed two weeks Christmas through New Year's Day. Closed for inclement weather according to local school district closings.

Museums
McAllister House Museum, Colorado Springs
Miramont Castle Museum,  Manitou Springs
 
Societies: Historical, Genealogical, and Ethnic
Colorado Native Club, call Dan & Ruth Tapio, 719-632-8117. Meets fourth Thursday.
  • DNA Study Group, fourth Wednesday, Carnegie Meeting Room, Penrose Library; all welcome; free
Jamestowne Society, Colorado
Sons of Norway, Colorado Springs
Pikes Peak Posse of Westerners International, a western-history organization. Meets second Monday (except July, August, December) at Masonic Temple, Panorama Dr., Colorado Springs, CO. Sheriff & "Rep" Doug Clausen, 622 N. Custer, Colorado Springs, CO 80903, (719) 633-1222, clausend@yahoo.com
 
Ethnic Research Groups at Denver Public Library:
Italian Research Group, 10-12 a.m., first Wednesday, Denver Public Library
Germanic Genealogical Society of Colorado, 10:15 a.m., first Tuesday, Denver Public Library
French Genealogy Study Group, 10:30 - noon, fourth Tuesday, Denver Public Library
Swedish Genealogical Society of Colorado, 9:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m., first Saturday, Sept.-May, Denver Public Library
Hispanic Legacy Research Center, open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., second Saturday, Denver Public Library
 
El Paso County Genealogy Links
Cyndi's List, El Paso County
Genealogy Trails, El Paso County
Colorado Genealogist Subject Index, Vols. 1-75 (1939-2014); periodical available at PPLD Special Collections, among other libraries.
Colorado Genealogist Surname Indexes, Vols. 1-75 (1939-2014); scroll down to index links.
Linkpendium, El Paso County
Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness (RAOGK), Colorado
USGenWeb, El Paso County
 
Genealogy Classes
  • Pikes Peak Library District Genealogy Classes
  • Fountain Branch Library, first Thursday, 7-8:45 p.m., "Genealogy on the Internet"
  • High Prairie Branch Library, second Saturday, 1-3 p.m., "The Genealogist's Internet"
Planning a Trip to Colorado Springs