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County History

Harney County has a land area of 10,141 square miles was formed in 1889 and was named for William Shelby Harney who was appointed to the command of the Department of Oregon of the United States Army in 1858 and was recalled in 1859, for his summary seizure of San Juan Island, from the British. It was formed from the southern part of Grant County so the area's history is much older. You may even find that some of the records you need will still be in Grant County.  More information on General W.S. Harney may be found at:


We encourage everyone to check out the enormous amount of US Census transcriptions located in the USGenWeb Census Project's directories. There are many wonderful volunteer transcribers working on various things so please keep checking back often. This is an ambitious project and everyone is invited to join! There are many volunteer opportunities available from transcribing to becoming a state coordinator. If you would like more information, please check out their site at:

Whats New!

Mar 3, 2016 Updated the Death Extracts on the Newspaper page.
Mar 3, 2016 Fixed some broken links in the census records
Mar 1, 2016 Added more information to Cities & Towns page
OPB article  "Spirit of Harney County's Past Survives Through Audio"
   from September 2015
Sept. 2015 - Added Military Page
Sept. 2015 - Added Books
Updated Sept. 2015 Marriages and Births to work correctly

Neighboring Counties that may have information

Crook (NW), Deschutes (NW), Grant (N), Lake (S), Malheur (E)

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