Marriage and Death Notices from Asheville, N. C. Newspapers 1840-1870


When I was at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City in March, I found a book called Marriage and Death Notices from Extant Asheville, N. C. Newspapers 1840-1870 An Index.  It is “an alphabetical index, by surnames, to 432 marriages and 1,181 death notices appearing in extant copies of” seven different newspapers, published in Asheville.

Newspapers abstracted include:

  • Asheville Messenger
  • Asheville News
  • Asheville Pioneer
  • Asheville Spectator
  • Highland Messenger
  • Messenger
  • North Carolina Citizen

This book is a very valuable resource because there have been several courthouse fires in Buncombe County.  According to the introduction, “virtually none of [Buncombe County’s] pre-1868 marriage records (marriage bonds) are known to exist.1   And, in fact, I did a search of the database “North Carolina, Marriage Bonds, 1741-1868” and found only 40 bonds in Buncombe County between 1840 and 1870. The death notices are also quite valuable, because North Carolina did not require death certificates until 1913.2

I took photos of all pages with surnames of interest to me, which turned out to be 24 pages.  I’m going through page by page and analyzing the information found.  Check back next week to see how I work through page one – which includes Alexander marriages.

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  1. Robert M. Topkins, compiler, Marriage and Death Notices from Extant Asheville, N. C. Newspapers, 1840-1870: an index (Raleigh: North Carolina Genealogical Society, 1977), Introduction.
  2. “North Carolina Death Records (FamilySearch Historical Records),” article, FamilySearch, ( (FamilySearch_Historical_Records) : accessed 7 Aug 2013), sec. 1.
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