Preservation of Records

Deeds and other documents overseen by the Register of Deeds tell much of the story of Washington County's long history.

According to Tennessee state statute, the primary function of the Register of Deeds is to make and preserve a record of instruments required or allowed by law to be filed or recorded, including deeds, powers of attorney, deeds of trust, mortgages, liens, contracts, plats, leases and other types of documents.

These records provide public notice of property ownership, liens, contracts and other transactions that affect the public interest. The register has specific directions on how to index, record and maintain the records.

Additionally, registers are required to hold a seat on a county's Public Records Commission, as ex officio members. 

Register of Deeds Ginger Jilton interacts frequently with the Public Records Commission, County Clerk Kathy Storey, Circuit Court Clerk Karen Guinn and others in Washington County's effort to maintain proper oversight, storage and public availability of its records dating back more than 230 years. She also coordinates her records-related activities with the Tennessee State Library and Archives when appropriate.

Washington County's records are open the public. For more information, call the Register of Deeds office at (423) 753-1644.