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Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania Genealogy

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Guide to Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

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County Facts
County seat: Montrose
Organized: February 21, 1810
Parent County(s): Luzerne[1]
Neighboring Counties
Broome (NY)  • Wyoming  • Lackawanna  • Bradford  • Wayne  • Tioga (NY)
See County Maps
Courthouse
Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania Courthouse.jpg
Location Map
Susquehanna County PA Map.png
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County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The county was named for Susquehanna River. It is located in the Northeastern tip of the state.[2]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Susquehanna County Courthouse
PO Box 218
31 Lake Avenue
Montrose, PA 18801
Phone: 570-278-4600
Fax: 570-278-2963
Prothonotary & Clerk of Courts: 570-278-4600
Orphan's Court: 570-278-6645, Email: susqded@susqco.com
Susquehanna County Website

Registrar and recorder has birth and death records from 1893-1905, marriage records from 1885, probate records from 1810, and military records from 1918
Prothonotary and Clerk of Courts has divorce records from 1877, court records from 1812, and naturalization records from 1844-1956[3]

Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Information for this chart was taken from various sources, often containing conflicting dates. This information should be taken as a guide and should be verified by contacting the county and/or the state government agency.

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[4]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1893 1885 1893 1812 1812 1810 1790
Statewide registration for births and deaths began in 1906. General compliance by 1915.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

  • Formed from Luzerne County 21 February 1810. [5]
  • County seat: Montrose[6]

For animated maps illustrating Pennsylvania county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Pennsylvania County Boundary Maps" (1673-1878) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

History Timeline[edit | edit source]

This area of Pennsylvania was once a part of Connecticut. Connecticut's Susquehanna Settlers at Connecticut State Library will lead you to some historical/genealogical records of Wyoming Valley.

There are several good histories of Susquehanna County, but the one by Emily Blackman is superior:

Resources[edit | edit source]

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Biographies[edit | edit source]

Business, Commerce, and Occupations[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries of Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See Pennsylvania Cemeteries for more information

 

  • Cemetery records often reveal birth, marriage, death, relationship, military, and religious information.

Additional Cemetery Resources

Census Records[edit | edit source]

For links and tips on using Federal (or United States) census records online for Susquehanna County, see: Pennsylvania Census.


Church Records[edit | edit source]

Church records and the information they provide vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. For members, they may contain: age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage date and maiden name; death/burial date. For general information about Pennsylvania denominations, see Pennsylvania Church Records.

Susquehanna County religious denominations

County-wide Database - Multi-denominational

Presbyterian

Court Records[edit | edit source]

For information about records kept in the Orphan's court, Prothonotary Court, Court of Common Pleas, and other courts in counties of Pennsylvania, visit the Pennsylvania Court Records Wiki page.

Directories[edit | edit source]

Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

For online resources, passenger lists, and specific groups coming to Pennsylvania, see Pennsylvania Emigration and Immigration.

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups[edit | edit source]

For groups that came, see People section of the Pennsylvania Emigration page.

Funeral Homes[edit | edit source]

Genealogies[edit | edit source]

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

The Orphan's Court ensures the best interests of those not capable of handling their own affairs: minors, incapacitated persons, decedents' estates, and more.[8]

  • 1814 -1917 Orphans' Court Dockets, with index (1814–1949) FHL film 1927562–1927571) - images only; click on the camera icon to view images

Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a specific location and reveal family relationships. Records include: deeds, abstracts, indexes, mortgages, leases, grants, sheriff sales, land patents, maps and more. For more information, see Pennsylvania Land and Property.

Land records in Susquehanna County began in 1810. These records are filed with the Register and Recorder office in Montrose, Pennsylvania.

Online Land Indexes and Records

  • 1812-1923 Deeds, 1812-1922; Index, 1812-1923. FHL film 1927833 (first of 40 films) - images only; click on the camera icon to view images
  • 1812-1973 Mortgage Records, 1812-1855; Index, 1812-1973. FHL films 2022025 -2022029 - images only; click on the camera icon to view images
  • 1974 - present Images are available on-line from 1974 to the present using the Landex system. There is a fee to view the images.

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Bradford CountyWyoming CountyLackawanna CountyWayne CountyTioga CountyBroome CountyPA SUSQUEHANNA.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources


Maps

Migration[edit | edit source]

The migration routes used by early European settlers to and from Susquehanna County included:[9]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Naturalization records can contain information about immigration and nativity. Prior to 1906, it is rare to find the town of origin in naturalization records. For more information, see Pennsylvania Naturalization

Online Naturalization Indexes and Records

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Newspapers may contain obituaries, births, marriages, deaths, anniversaries, family gatherings, family travel, achievements, business notices, engagement information, and probate court proceedings. Newspapers are often found in local or university libraries, historical or genealogical societies, or state archives in the area where the newspaper was published. See Pennsylvania Newspapers for more information.

Newspapers of Susquehanna County

This newspaper was preceded by the following weekly newspapers:
  • The Montrose Independent (1927-1985)
  • Independent Republican (1855-1926)
  • The Montrose Democrat (1879-1926)

Online Newspapers

To learn if there are newspapers online for a specific town or city in Pennsylvania, see news.google.com/newspapers and search for the town or the name of a newspaper.

Online Newspaper Abstracts

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Obituaries are generally found in local newspapers where the person died or where family members lived. Local libraries or societies may have indexes or other sources.

Online Obituary Abstracts

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Probate matters in Susquehanna County are handled by the Orphans' Court and start when the county was created.

In addition to wills and administrations, the Orphans' Court also handles: audits of accounts of executors, administrators, trustees, and guardians; distribution of estates; appointments of guardians; adoptions; appeals from the Register of Wills; inheritance tax appeals, and various petitions and motions.

Online Probate Indexes and Records

School Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

Note: The Tax Assessment Records from 1813-1865 give the record of each township, and each is on a separate roll of film. Some of the townships may also include Military Lists for the years ca 1855-1863.

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Vital records are handled by the County Orphans' Court. Between the years 1852-1855 Pennsylvania made a failed attempt to record birth, marriage and death events at the county level. County marriage records were kept in earnest in 1885. Births and deaths, at the county level, were begun in 1893 and kept through 1905. For the most complete set of records, contact the County Orphans' Court.

Birth[edit | edit source]

Early births 1893–1905 are located at the County Orphans' Court. For more information, see Pennsylvania Vital Records.

  • 1852-1854 Pennsylvania Births Ancestry $

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Pennsylvania marriages were created by county officals. Contact Susquehanna County Courthouse

Death[edit | edit source]

Early deaths 1893–1905 are located at the County Orphans' Court. For indexes and records, 1906 and later, see Pennsylvania Vital Records.

  • 1852-1854 Pennsylvania Deaths Ancestry $

Divorce[edit | edit source]

Divorce records are available through the office of the Prothonotary. The office of the Prothonotary is located in the courthouse building.

Research Facilities[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]

  • National Archives at Philadelphia
    14700 Townsend Road
    Philadelphia, PA 19154-1096
    Phone: 215-305-2044
    Fax: 215-305-2052
    website

Family History Centers[edit | edit source]

Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance and free access to premium genealogical websites. In addition, many centers have free how-to genealogy classes.

Libraries[edit | edit source]

  • Susquehanna County Free Library Association
    The Association consists of four public libraries and Outreach Services in Susquehanna County. Each library has access to Heritage Quest, accessible with your library card from home and Ancestry.com from the library system. A list of the libraries in this system and their website and contact information is found at the website.

Museums[edit | edit source]

  • Soldier's Orphan School Museum
    Orphan School Road
    Harford, PA 18823
    Phone: 570-434-2496
    The Soldier's Orphan School Museum features historical exhibits and a library concerned with the Franklin Academy and Soldier's Orphan School. [10]
    This historical society collects and preserves the rich heritage of the region. [11]

Societies[edit | edit source]

  • Genealogical Research Society of Northeastern Pennsylvania, Inc.
    (GRSNP)
    1100 Main Street
    Peckville, PA 18452
    Phone: 570-383-7661
    FAX: 570-383-7466
    Email: info@grsnp.org
    website
The GRSNP serves northeastern counties: Lackawanna, Luzerne, Monroe, Pike, Susquehanna, Wayne, Wyoming
  • Brooklyn Historical Society
    PO Box 112
    Brooklyn, PA 18813
    Phone: 570-289-4378 or 570-498-6637
  • Harford Historical Society
    PO Box 1023
    Harford, PA 18823
    Phone: 570-289-4405
    website
    Facebook
  • The Harford Historical Society preserves the heritage of Harford through a variety of special events throughout the year.[12]

Websites[edit | edit source]

  • USGenWeb project.Susqehanna County. May have maps, name indexes, history or other information for this county. Select the state, then the county.
  • Susquehanna County PA Genealogy
  • FamilySearch Catalog – The FamilySearch catalog contains descriptions and access information for all genealogical materials (including books, online materials, microfilm, microfiche, and publications) in their collection.  Use Historical Records to search for specific individuals in genealogical records.

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Pennsylvania.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Susquehanna_County,_Pennsylvania 2/12/2017
  3. The Handybook for Genealogists : United States of America, 10th ed., (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002), p. 592.
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Pennsylvania.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  5. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Pennsylvania.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  6. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Pennsylvania.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/images/4/49/Igipennsylvaniapppppp.pdf.
  8. The Philadelphia Courts at Common Pleas accessed 10 July 2012
  9. Handybook, 850-51.
  10. http://explorepahistory.com/attraction.php?id=1-B-244F
  11. Information found on Explore PA History at http://explorepahistory.com/attraction.php?id=1-B-2C0E
  12. Information found at ExplorePAHistory: http://explorepahistory.com/attraction.php?id=1-B-2113

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