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Spotlight: South Dakota and Montana

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Valerie Beaudrault

Valerie Beaudrault
Assistant Editor

Moody County Historical Society, South Dakota


The Moody County Historical Society is located in Flandreau, South Dakota. Moody County is on the eastern border of South Dakota and Minnesota. The Society has made resources available on its website, including a cemetery database, a land patents database, and a veterans’ list. These databases are in PDF file format. You will need the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view them.


Cemetery Database

The Moody County cemetery database contains more than 8,000 records. It is arranged alphabetically by surname. The data fields include name of the deceased, date of birth, date of death, grave location (block, lot, grave), veteran status, comments, id number, and cemetery name. Information found in the comments field includes place of birth, military service details, cause of death, parents’ names, spouse’s name, marriage date, gravestone inscription, and much more.


Land Patents Database

The South Dakota Land Patents Database is derived from General Land Office and Bureau of Land Management information. It contains land patents issued between 1859 and 1995 by the United States in what is now the state of South Dakota. The data fields for each land transaction in the database include: date, location (township, range, section, meridian), name of person the land was patented to, case type, conveyance type, county, and the patent document identification number. You should be advised that the data fields only appear as headers on the first page of this nearly one hundred page file. This information can be used obtain copies of the patent file from the National Archives.


Veterans List

The Veterans List is an alphabetical database of Moody County veterans, from the Civil War to the Vietnam War. It has about 1,200 records. The data fields include last name, first name, war served in, regiment/branch, company, date enrolled, end of service, rank at end of service, and cemetery in which the veteran is buried.


Parmly Billings Library Genealogical Resources, Montana


The city of Billings is located in south central Montana. It is the county seat of Yellowstone County. The Parmly Billings Library has made some Billings-area resources available on its website. These databases are in PDF file format. You will need the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view them.


Vital Statistics from Early Billings Gazettes


The vital statistics database contains more than 13,000 names. It indexes births, deaths, business licenses, and other records of early residents of Billings as recorded in the Billings Gazette. The index covers the period from 1882 to 1901. It is arranged alphabetically by last name. The data fields include name, date of publication, type of event, place, and newspaper title. The notices include marriages and births, delinquent taxes, registered voters, naturalizations, student status, prisoners, pardons, business licenses, commitments to an asylum, and obituaries.

There is a second database of the Billings Gazette indexes that covers the 1930s. The database contains scanned images of original typed indexes. According to the website, the indexing is not comprehensive. There is an A to Z database, which is very large, and three smaller databases broken into alphabetical sections.


Early Billings City Directories

A number of early Billings city directories have been scanned and uploaded to the website. They are for the years 1883, 1894, 1900–1901, and 1903–1904. It should be noted that pages containing only advertisements were not scanned.

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