Good historical or genealogical research requires use of all available resources, “offline” or “online.” While no list of online resources can be complete, the external links below contain a wealth of information about Boone county and its people. Only reputable and free sites/links are included. You won't be disappointed with these links. They range from indexes or finding aids that can lead the inquirer to what they are seeking, to fully searchable text and/or images of original documents. Of course, the posts on this Online Archives web site are your best and most comprehensive source.
Gazetteer of the State of Missouri: With a Map of the State... edited by Alphonso Wetmore. St. Louis. 1837.
This gazetteer also contains some great descriptions of early Boone county, along with other counties.
General Ordinances of the Town of Columbia, in Boone County, Missouri. Columbia, Missouri: Statesman Book and Job Office Print. 1890.
History of Boone County Missouri, by William F. Switzler, Western Historical Company, 1882, 1144 pages.
This wonderful, early history of the county can now be found fully online with both images and fully searchable text. Hard cover copies of the book, fully indexed, are also available for purchase by contacting the Boone County Historical Society. Just click on the email link on the top bar of this page and ask for ordering information.
A History of Northeast Missouri, Volume 1, edited by Walter Williams.
While more inclusive than just Boone county, this book contains much of interest about the general history of Boone county.
The Negroes of Columbia, Missouri: A Concrete Study of the Race Problem, M.A. Thesis by William Wilson Elwang. University of Missouri: Columbia, Mo. 1904.
Boone County Historical Society's Civil War collection.
Images of original Civil War documents in the Boone County Historical Society's collection are hosted on the Missouri Digital Heritage web site.
Mid-Missouri Civil War Project
This project has great original sources of Civil War journal and maps for Boone county and central Missouri, including several from the Boone County Historical Society's own collection. Check it out.
Missouri's Union Provost Marshal Papers: 1861 - 1866.
This database includes 745 records from Boone county.
Missouri Judicial Index Database for Boone County 1815-1833.
Presented by the Missouri State Archives, the Judicial Index database provides an index and short abstract of selected civil, criminal and probate court cases from Missouri counties. For Boone county, the cases currently range from 1815-1833. Through this database researchers are now able to gain insights to daily life through county court records or follow a court case from the county level all the way up to the Supreme Court. At the search page, you can restrict the search to Boone county if you choose to do so.
Missouri State Archives Guide to County and Municipal Records for Boone County.
This link to the Missouri State Archives does not directly access the subject records for Boone County but it does give a comprehensive listing of the Boone County records housed at the State Archives in Jefferson City. This is a great aid in planning research and finding where the records are located.
Land Patents 1831-1969.
The Missouri State Archives web site includes this database of land patents. A patent is the deed created the first time that land is sold by the government to an individual.
Land Patent Search - Bureau of Land Management - General Land Office Records
A patent is the deed created the first time that land is sold by the government to an individual. This site contains much the same information as the Missouri State Archives site above but you will also be able to see an image of the actual patents.
1869 Bird's eye view of the city of Columbia, Boone Co., Missouri. Drawn by A. Ruger.
This link takes you to a Library of Congress site with a zoomable, high-resolution image of Albert Ruger's amazing 1869 view of Columbia, showing streets and buildings in wonderful detail.
1930 Plat Book of Boone County, Missouri, by the W. W. Hixson & Co.
Held By University of Missouri - Columbia, Ellis Library Special Collections. Pages are arranged by township, range and section and there is no index of names.
Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps.
The Sanborn Fire Insurance Company published detailed city maps for the fire insurance industry to assess the risk of property losses. This online collection contains 6,798 map pages for 390 Missouri cities from 1880 to 1922 including several in Boone County. The search interface, lack of introductory material, missing internal indexes and omitted legend materials may make initial use difficult, but once you learn to use the maps, the content provided is well worth the effort.
Populated Places in Boone County, MO, As Shown on Topographic Maps
This site lists many Boone county place names, both present and historical, and shows the site location on a topographic map. Very helpful for relating historical sites to present-day locations.
Current Boone County Land Parcels and Aerial Photographs from the Boone County Assessor.
The entire county is covered by these aerial photographs showing all land features, property owners, etc. While not "historical," these images often come in handy in historical and genealogical research in the county. The first time visitor is required to open an account but that only requires a user name and password and no other personal information.
Central Missouri Pioneers
The link is to a list of the ancestors whose descendant(s) have qualified for a certificate from the Genealogical Society of Central Missouri. If you would like additional genealogical information about these central Missouri pioneers, contact the genealogy society through this web page..
Famous Boone Countians, from the Famous Missourians State Historical Society site.
Find biographical sketches and images for such Boone Countians as
Tom Bass, Muriel Battle, John W. "Blind" Boone, Jane Froman, Vinnie Ream
Land Patents 1831-1969
The Missouri State Archives database includes this database of land patents. A patent is the deed created the first time that land is sold by the government to an individual.
Note: While only some “Columbia” newspapers are currently online, they include much news from all of Boone county, and beyond.
[Franklin & Columbia] Missouri Intelligencer, 1819-1835.
This index began as a card file that was compiled over a number of years by State Historical Society of Missouri staff and includes information about people and topics mostly from Franklin (1819-1826, in Howard co.) and Columbia (1826-1835). Images and text are not available online but articles of interest can be ordered by contacting the State Historical of Missouri.
Columbia Missouri Statesman, 1843-1886.
This index began as a card file that was compiled over a number of years by State Historical Society of Missouri staff and includes information about people and topics mostly from Columbia. Images and text are not available online but articles of interest can be ordered by contacting the State Historical of Missouri.
Columbia Missourian, September 1908 - June 1922
This is the Library of Congress Chronicling America site that allows searching of thousands of newspapers across the country. At this search page, you can narrow down your search to the state of Missouri or to the individual newspapers. Great site.
Columbia Missourian, for 1908, 1909, 1929, & 1966-1985.
This Missouri Digital Heritage collection was contributed by the State Historical Society of Missouri and includes images and fully searchable text of the Columbia Missourian daily newspaper for the years 1908, 1909, 1929 and the years from 1966-1985.
Columbia Daily Tribune, 1993-present.
This online archives is fully searchable for more recent issues of the Columbia Daily Tribune. Scroll down to the bottom to find the link(s). Note that issues dated before Feb. 2, 2009, are in a separate archives.
Photographs from the Early 1900s.
Part of the vast Boone County Historical Society photo collection has been placed with the University of Missouri Digital Library. The link below accesses over 700 high-quality photographs from glass plate negatives taken from before 1910 to 1936. The negatives were selected from the Westhoff Archive at the Boone County Historical Society and were taken by Joe Douglass, Henry Holborn, and Wesley Blackmore. The photographs provide a unique glimpse into the people and culture of Columbia, Boone County and Missouri in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.
Early Photographs of Centralia.
Eight photographs of downtown Centralia from ca 1900 from Rootsweb.com.
Boone County Place Names, 1928-1945.
The Western Historical Manuscript Collection-Columbia web site includes the Ramsay Place Names File that was compiled by students of University of Missouri professor of English, Robert L. Ramsay (1880-1953) during the first half of the twentieth century. The place name file includes all 114 Missouri Counties, and Kansas City. The link here is for Boone county names.
A Directory of Towns, Villages, and Hamlets Past and Present of Boone County, Missouri
This online list, compiled by Arthur Paul Moser, is another source of Boone county place names.
This Ancestry.com database does not require a subscription fee to use. It is an online version of part of Elizabeth Prather Ellsberry’s, compilation: Cemetery Records of Boone County, Missouri. Chillicothe, MO, USA: Elizabeth Prather Ellsberry, c1965. It covers Vol. 2 (Part 1 & 2), 5, 6, 7, 8 (Part 1 & 2) of that publication. The following cemeteries are included in the database:
Bethel, Church of Christ, Fairview, Harris, Liberty, Little Bonne Femme, Locust Grove, New Salem, Renfro, Robinson, Schooling, Sims, Sturgeon, Taylor, Toalson, Turner, Union (2), and three unnamed cemeteries.
Missouri Birth & Death Records Database, Pre-1910.
This Missouri Digital Heritage Database is an abstract of the birth, stillbirth, and death records recorded before 1909 and that are available on microfilm at the Missouri State Archives.
Missouri Marriage Records, 1805-2002
This Ancestry.com database does not require a subscription fee to use. Searches may be limited to Boone county.
Missouri Death Certificates, 1910 – 1958.
The award-winning index can be searched by first name and last name, county, and by year and month. Once a name is selected, a digitized image of the original certificate can be retrieved. This is an ongoing project of the Missouri State Archives and additional records will be added as they are transcribed and imaged.