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How to Search the Court Records

Searching by Keyword

The Court Records search engine supports three types of searching, as follows:

1. MATCH ANY OF THESE WORDS
This is the broadest search possible. It will return all records that contain AT LEAST ONE of the words submitted. A search of this type for "lewis clark" will return all records that contain "lewis", all records that contain "clark" and all records that contain both "lewis" and "clark".

2. MATCH ALL OF THESE WORDS
This search will only return records that contain ALL the words submitted. A search of this type for "lewis clark" will only return records that contain "lewis" and "clark". You can enter the words in any order (i.e. searching for "clark lewis" will return the same results).

3. MATCH EXACT PHRASE
This search will only return records that contains the exact phrase entered. A search of this type for "lewis clark" will only return records that contain the exact phrase "lewis clark".

GENERAL SYNTAX
Unless you are using a MATCH EXACT PHRASE search, avoid using articles (A, AN, THE) and prepositions (OF, FOR) in your keywords list. Doing so will artifically limit a MATCH ALL THESE WORDS search, and may produce extra records for a MATCH ANY OF THESE WORDS search.

Since the form already supports three types of searches, using logical operators (AND, OR, NOT) is redundant and will be ignored by the search engine. To search for all records containing "Lewis" AND "Clark", search for "Lewis Clark" using the MATCH ALL THESE WORDS option.

The search engine will match partial words (or numbers) or words, but will not match mistyped words or numbers. For example, searching for "cla" will return all records containing "clark" "claims" and "baclava", but searching for "clarkson" will not return records that contain "clark."

The search is not case-sensitive. For example, a search for "lewis" will return the same results as a search for "Lewis" or "LEwIS."

Searching by Date

Using the AFTER and BEFORE fields, you may choose to search only within a specific date range. By leaving these fields blank (the default) you search all records. You may also fill in only one of the fields, in order to search before a certain date. For example, by filling in 1810 for AFTER and 1820 for BEFORE, your search will return all records between 1810 and 1820 inclusive. By filling in 1810 for AFTER and leaving BEFORE blank, your search will return all records including 1810 and after.

You may use the date fields in conjunction with a keyword search, or by themselves. When used in conjunction with a keyword search, the date field will further limit the search. For example, by filling in "lewis clark" for the keywords (in a phrase search), 1810 for AFTER and 1820 for BEFORE, your search will return only records that matched the phrase "lewis clark" AND that occurred between 1810 and 1820 inclusive.

If you search with date limitations, but leave the KEYWORD field blank, then the search will return all records within the date range.

Choosing your Search Fields

By checking or unchecking the box, you can choose to search one or more fields in the database. You must select at least one field, even if not searching with a keyword.

Choosing a Series to Search

By checking or unchecking the box, you can choose to search one or more series. You must select at least one series.

Ordering your Search Results

You can choose to have your records displayed by ascending YEAR, PLAINTIFF, DEFENDANT, or ACTION.

You can reorder the records on the results page by selecting the appropriate field name from the drop down menu.

Optimizing your Search

You receive too many results

The following search options will help limit your search results:
You receive few or no results

The following search options will increase your number of results:
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