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Meet the Putnam County Recorder

Biography of the Putnam County Recorder

What We Do

Previous Recorders of Putnam County, Ohio

Ohio Recorders' Association


Cathy S. Recker

Putnam County Recorder

Biography of the Putnam County Recorder:

Cathy S. Recker was elected Recorder of Putnam County in November 2004 and took office January 3, 2005. 

Prior to being elected as Recorder, Recker held a position with Ag Credit in Ottawa, and prior to that, she worked as a Deputy in the Real Estate division with the Putnam County Auditor’s Office for 10 years.  She has many years of experience working with land records and land titles. 

Recker currently serves as the Supervisor of the County Microfilm Department and Secretary of the Putnam County Records Commission.

Since becoming County Recorder, Cathy has become active in the Ohio Recorder’s Association.  She currently serves as the President of the Ohio Recorders' Association.  Each year of her term, Cathy has receive the required units of Continuing Education by the Ohio Recorders Association and additional through outside sources relating to Microfilm and Record Retention.

Cathy resides with her husband Troy and two daughters in the Continental area.

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What We Do:

In Ohio, it is the County Recorder who has the important and indispensable task of keeping the vital records pertaining to ownership in real estate (land) and to all encumbrances or liens upon it. Without the work of the County Recorder in recording, safekeeping, and organizing all documents in a competent and logical manner, it would be nearly impossible to purchase land and be assured of a clear title or to lend money with land as security.

The practice of recording real estate documents is based on law in England, which traveled to the New World with the colonists. Public land registrars were appointed in colonial America to keep accurate records. A system of registration was necessary to prove the rights of persons who first made claims to property.

In 1787, the Northwest Territory was formed, encompassing all lands north and west of the Ohio River. A Recorder's office was established in each county. Ohio became a state in 1803, and although the state constitution did not provide for a Recorder's office, the first state legislature mandated that a Recorder be appointed in each county by the Judges of the Court of Common Pleas. In 1829, the Recorder's office became an elective position, and in 1936, the term was established at four years.

Today, the County Recorder keeps and maintains accurate land records that are current, legible, and easily accessible. An important aspect of the Recorder's work is to index each document so it may be readily located. Accurate indexing makes it possible for persons searching land records to find the documents necessary to establish a "chain of title" (history of ownership) and ensures that any debts or encumbrances against the property are evident. These invaluable records are utilized by the general public, attorneys, historians, genealogists, and land title examiners.

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Previous Recorders of Putnam County, Ohio:

 The Recorder’s Office has been held by a succession of accomplished individuals over the years.  Cathy Recker has continued the dedication of maintaining and preserving accurate land records of Putnam County’s history as those who preceded her.


2005 - Present

Cathy S. Recker

1989 - 2005

A. Marie Heitmeyer

1977 - 1989

Joseph E. Ruhe

1953 - 1977

Amanda M. Lighthill

1949 - 1953

Samuel Ford

1948 - 1949

P. Lloyd Hauck

1941 - 1948

Carl R. Minning

1935 - 1941

Henry A. Kistler

1931 - 1935

Wilbur E. Dunlap

1925 - 1931

Owen J. O'Donnell

1921 - 1925

Joseph W. Heckman

1917 - 1921

Forest A. Henry

1913 - 1917

Theodore Heckman

1909 - 1913

Howard C. Hummon

1902 - 1909

Frank Gmeiner

1896 - 1902

John Cowan

1890 - 1896

Joseph Justice

1883 - 1890

Leroy M. Ludwig

1877 - 1883

William Alt

1871 - 1877

William N. Wetherell

1865 - 1871

James Monroe

1859 - 1865

Peter I. Bowman

1856 - 1859

John Nicewarner

1853 - 1856

Joseph Tingle

1853 -

Frederick W. Schierloh

1849 - 1853

Jabez S. Spencer

1847 - 1849

John Dixon

1836 - 1841


1834 - 1836

Moses Lee

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Ohio Recorders' Association SealOhio Recorders' Association:

The Ohio Recorders' Association was founded in 1927 and remains a vital organization to the present day. Membership is made up of Ohio's eighty-eight County Recorders and their deputy recorders.

The objective of the Ohio Recorders' Association is to educate its members so that Recorders and their employees may better serve the citizens of their counties. To this end, the association sponsors continuing education seminars on topics such as current legislation, office procedures, personnel management, and constituent issues.

The association encourages the development of legislation to enhance the work and efficiency of Recorders' offices and to respond to modern technological changes. Association meetings provide the opportunity for Recorders to exchange ideas, review statewide recording procedures, and promote legislation in the best interest of the citizens of Ohio.


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