Register of Deeds

Register at a Glance

Register Patricia Bell
Deputy   Terry Hill
Location 121 E. Main St., Linden, TN 37096
Phone 931-589-2210
Mail P.O.B. 62, Linden, TN 37096
Fax  931-589-2215
Hours  M–F, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

The Register’s office carries on a centuries old tradition of providing an official register for recording binding documents.

About the Register: Perry County, Tennessee

The primary function of the Register is to make and preserve a record of instruments required or allowed by law to be filed or recorded, including but not limited to deeds, powers of attorney, deeds of trust, mortgages, liens, contracts, plats, leases, judgments, wills, court orders, military discharges, records under the Uniform Commercial Code (primarily fixture filings) and other types of documents. The records provide public notice of property ownership, liens, contracts and other transactions that affect the public interest. Most of the instruments recorded or filed in the register’s office relate to determining interests or rights in either real or personal property.  Some instruments received also deal with a person’s legal status with regard to other persons or legal entities. The Register’s office is in the Perry County courthouse in Linden, which is the county seat, and by Tennessee law, the records and papers must remain in the office at all times.

History of the Register's Office in Tennessee

The office of register in Tennessee can be traced back to the period when this region was part of the English colony of Carolina. The office was provided for in the colony’s first fundamental law, known as the “Concessions and Agreements” of 1665. This office was patterned along the English model. The register’s general duties have always been to record various types of legal instruments and transactions, particularly those conveying title to land.

The register’s office in Carolina continued under the colony’s “Fundamental Constitution” of 1715. The qualified voters elected three freeholders who became candidates for the office. The governor then appointed one of these three small landowners to be the register. The register was to serve during good behavior. When Tennessee became a state in 1796, the first constitution included a provision for a register to be elected by the county court in every county.

The term of office was indefinite and the register was to serve “during good behavior.” The Tennessee Constitution of 1835 provided for the popular election of the register for a term of four years, reflecting the trend of the Jacksonian era. Tennessee’s Constitution of 1870 retained the office of register and continued the term of office at four years. The 1978 amendments to the Tennessee Constitution retained the four-year term for the register.