Perry County, Tennessee

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The Counties and County Seats of Tennessee; Perry County is located at A3, E7.

Perry is a county in Middle Tennessee. It was formed in 1819/1821 from Hickman and Humphreys counties.


Perry County was formed in 1819 from parts of Humphreys and Hickman counties. It is named in honor of Oliver Hazard Perry (1785–1819), American War of 1812 naval officer who, after his flagship was severely damaged, continued the fight from another ship and forced the surrender of the British fleet at the Battle of Lake Erie.[1]

Decatur County was formed in 1845 from the portions of Perry County west of the Tennessee River. The first settlements in the county were along Toms Creek near the Tennessee River, with the first known birth in the area occurring in 1818. This is the first written date involving the area that would become Perry County, but it is evident that the area had some European permanent settlement prior to this.[2]

The seat of government and courts were originally located in a small town known as Harrisburg approximately 4 miles (6.4 km) south of the current seat of Linden. The county seat was transferred to its current location in Linden in 1848, where the current courthouse stands today. Harrisburg no longer exists as a municipal entity or recognized location.[1]


Perry County began keeping birth records in 1908, marriage records in 1865, and death records in 1881.

Tennessee is a State-Land State. The county's land records date from 1820. Court records exist from 1826 with estate probate records from 1863.

Prior to 1845 Perry County records included present day Decatur County. For more information, contact the county at Main St./P.O. Box 16, Linden 37096-0016.

Archives, Libraries, and Societies

  • Perry County Historical Society
  • Perry County Library


  1. 1.0 1.1 Gus Steele, "Perry County," Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture. Retrieved: 18 March 2013.
  2. Perry County Historical Society, "Perry County History, Perry County Chamber of Commerce website. Retrieved: 30 October 2013.

For information about the state of Tennessee see Tennessee Family History Research.

Counties of Tennessee
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