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Guide to Sullivan County, Pennsylvania ancestry, family history and genealogy in courthouse sources including birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, wills, deeds and land records, Civil War records, Revolutionary War records, family histories, cemeteries, churches, tax records, newspapers, and obituaries.


Sullivan County, Pennsylvania
Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Sullivan County
Location in the state of Pennsylvania, United States Genealogy
Map of the U.S. highlighting Pennsylvania
Location of Pennsylvania in the U.S.
Founded March 15, 1847
County Seat Laporte
Sullivan County, Pennsylvania Courthouse.jpg
Address Sullivan County Courthouse
245 Muncy Street
P.O. Box 157
Laporte, PA 18626
Sullivan County Website
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Sullivan County Pennsylvania Historical Facts[edit | edit source]

Beginning dates for major county records
  • Parent Counties: Formed from Lycoming County 15 March 1847. [1]
  • County Seat: Laporte
  • Neighboring Counties: Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan residents may also have records in:[2]

Named for Senator Charles Sullivan, leader of the Pennsylvania Senate.

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

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

Records Loss[edit | edit source]

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

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Biographies[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

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

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The usage of "Mormon" and "LDS" on this page is approved according to current policy.

Online Grave Transcripts Published Grave Transcripts County Cemetery Directories WorldCat Names in Stone
USGenWeb Billion Graves
Pennsylvania Genealogy at Epodunk
Pennsylvania Gravestones
Billion Graves
Names in Stone
Access Genealogy

See Pennsylvania Cemeteries for more information.

Census[edit | edit source]

For tips on accessing Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan Federal (or United States) census records online, see: Pennsylvania Census.

There are no county or state census records available for Pennsylvania. County and city tax records can be used as a substitute when census records are not available.

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Church records and the information they provide vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. They may contain information about members of the congregation, such as age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information and maiden names; and death date. In Pennsylvania, church records are often used as a substitute for birth, marriage, and death information. For general information about Pennsylvania denominations, view the Pennsylvania Church Records wiki page.

Harmony Methodist Church, Joanna, Pennsylvania

The Sullivan County Historical Society and Museum has listed in their resources, Compilings, Churches - individually. They may have the church records for your ancestors. You may visit them or use their volunteers for a fee. There email address is

Additional church records can be located atLinkpendium and by searching the FamilySearch Catalog. The FamilySearch Catalog has a plethora ofchurch recordsfor Sullivan County, many are limited in the time frame they cover. When searching the FamilySearch Catalog, be sure to also search at the town and township level.

Sullivan county new york churches.png

Finding Church Records at Other Repositories

Additional church records can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan Church Records  in online catalogs like:

County-wide Database - Multi-denominational[edit | edit source]
Contains records of:
  • Dushore: Peace Lutheran Church; Zion Lutheran Church
  • Mildred: Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church

Court Records[edit | edit source]

Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan court records are housed at the Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan Courthouse. For many counties copies of court records may be found at the Pennsylvania State Archives and in the FamilySearch collection. Note that within these collections some films may contain the same records, but have different titles. Other titles are not duplicates. See Finding Court Records at other repositories within this section for links to the online catalogs for these two collections. Films at the Pennsylvania State Archives are not available for inter-library loan. If court records are available FamilySearch films may be available at a local Family History Center. Call ahead for availability.

Court of Common Pleas[edit | edit source]

The Courts of Common Pleas are the trial courts of Pennsylvania. Major civil and criminal cases are heard in these courts. Judges also decide cases involving adoption, divorce, child custody, abuse, juvenile delinquency, estates, guardianships, charitable organizations and many other matters.

The Common Pleas courts are organized into 60 judicial districts. Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan shares its judicial district with Wyoming County. Judges of the Common Pleas courts are elected to 10-year terms. A president judge and a court administrator serve in each judicial district.[3]

Clerk of Courts[edit | edit source]

The Clerk of Courts prepares and maintains the records for the Criminal Division of the Court of Common Pleas. The Clerk signs and affixes the Seal of the Courts to all writs and processes, administers oaths and affirmations, and assumes custody of the seal and records of the Courts. The Clerk certifies and distributes orders of the Court. The Clerk also certifies and prepares bills of costs for the defendants and utilizes the computerized financial management system to disburse fines, costs and restitution.[4] For the Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan Clerk of Courts address see the Courthouse section on this page.

Orphan's Court[edit | edit source]

See Vital Records
The Orphans' Court is responsible for a wide range of matters. The name of the Court is derived from the more general definition of "orphan," that being a person or thing that is without protective affiliation or sponsorship. This would include those not capable of handling their own affairs, minors, incapacitated persons, decedents estates, nonprofit corporations and trusts. It is the role of the Court to ensure that the best interests of the person or entity are not compromised.

It is believed the name of this court was borrowed from the Court of Orphans of the city of London, England which had the care and guardianship of children of deceased citizens, in their minority.[5]

For Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan Orphans' Court contact information see the Courthouse section on this page.

In Sullivan County, the Prothonotary is the clerk of the Orphan's Court. In fact five different offices are combined into one office.

Prothonotary[edit | edit source]

The office of the Prothonotary is the custodian of all civil matters in the county. This includes naturalization, immigration, equity actions, judgements, federal and local tax liens, city liens, family court, arbitrations, license suspension appeals, appeals to higher court, commercial code filings, applications for passports and divorce proceedings. See the Courthouse section on this page for the Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan Prothonotary office information.

District Court[edit | edit source]

District Court
Magisterial District Judge
245 Muncy Street, Suite 150
P.O. Box 259
Laporte, PA 18626
Phone: 570-946-4413
Fax: 570-946-4436

The District Court is presided over by a Magisterial District Judge. The judge has responsible for non-jury trials and civil cases involving amounts under $12,000. Also, they perform marriages.

Finding Court Records at Other Repositories

Additional court records can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan Court Records in online catalogs like:

Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

For information about emigration into Pennsylvania, see the Pennsylvania Emigration and Immigration page.

Ethnic Groups[edit | edit source]

Germans[edit | edit source]

Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Genealogy[edit | edit source]

History[edit | edit source]

Published Histories[edit | edit source]

History of Sullivan County, Pennsylvania: compendium of biography. by Thomas J. Ingham. Salem, MS: Higgison, [1998] FHL book 974.859 H2i

Land and Property[edit | edit source]

Land records in Sullivan County began in 1847. These records are filed with the Register of Deeds office in Laporte, Pennsylvania.

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts, indexes, mortgages, leases, grants, sheriff sales, land patents, and maps. Property records include liens as well as livestock brands and estray records.

The following are examples of available resources:

Online Land Records

  • 1847 - present Images are available on-line from 1847 to the present using the Landex system. There is a fee to view the images.

Land Records on Microfilm

Additional Resources

Note that the "Maps" section below also includes maps related to land ownership.

See Pennsylvania Land and Property for more information about using land records, especially about original land warrants, surveys, and patents filed at the state land office.

Additional resources can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Sullivan County Pennsylvania Land in online catalogs such as:

Maps[edit | edit source]

Media:Sullivan county pennsylvania townships.pngSullivan county pennsylvania townships.png
About this image
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Migration[edit | edit source]

Military[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. See Pennsylvania Naturalization for more information about the types of records and availability.

Naturalizations granted at the county level were kept by the office of the Prothonotary. Naturalizations could also be granted on the Federal Court level.

Naturalization records available for Sullivan County, Pennsylvania include the following:

Online Naturalization Indexes and Records

Original Naturalization Records on Microfilm

Finding Naturalization Indexes at Other Repositories

Additional naturalization indexes can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan naturalization in online catalogs like:

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan newspapers may contain genealogical value including obituaries, births, marriages, deaths, anniversaries, family gatherings, family travel, achievements, business notices, engagement information, and probate court proceedings.

To access newspapers, contact public libraries, historical/genealogical societies, college or university libraries, or state archives in the area where the newspaper was published.

For information on state-wide newspapers see Pennsylvania Newspapers

Newspapers of Sullivan County

Online Newspapers

To learn if there are newspapers online for a specific town or city in Pennsylvania, see 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. However, sometimes an obituary is found in the location from which he or she originated. To find an obituary, see the information under the Newspaper heading

Online Obituary Abstracts

Occupations[edit | edit source]

Indentured Servants[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Poorhouse, Almshouse[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Probate matters in {{{1}}} 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 Records
Original probate records for some Pennsylvania counties are available free online as digital images at FamilySearch . The dates vary significantly for each county and not all counties are listed. Some counties may only have probate indexes. This Pennsylvania collection of images may be browsed through the links listed below:
Complete Collection:

Sullivan County Only:

Original Probate Records on Microfilm

Additional Probate Indexes and Abstracts

Additional probate indexes or abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan probate wills in online catalogs like:

Repositories[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]
  • The Pennsylvania Archives collection contains county archive records that can be searched onsite. Currently the Archives' staff cannot provide research or make copies of these records. Their collections include Almshouse Registers; Tax records; Birth, Death and Marriage Indexes and Records; Midwife records; African American records; Wills; Deeds; Naturalizations; Coroner's inquests; and Orphan's Court dockets. A list of the Archive's county holdings are on Microfilm or Manuscript form.

Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Sullivan County Courthouse
245 Muncy Street
PO Box 157
Laporte, PA 18626
Phone: 570-946-7351
Fax: 570-946-7105
Hours: 8:30 a. m. to 4:00 p. m.

In Sullivan County, the prothonotary is responsible for five different offices. They are Prothonotary, Recorder, Register of Wills, Clerk of Courts, and Clerk of Orphan's Court.

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. See family history center for more information. Search the online FHC directory for a nearby family history center.

Family History Centers (FHCs) are branches of the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah, and are located all over the world. Their goal is to provide resources for family history research.

The main FHC for Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan is the Towanda Pennsylvania Family History Center. For additional nearby Family History Centers, search online in the FHC directory.

Museums[edit | edit source]

Sullivan County Historical Society and Museum
458 Meylert St<Laporte, PA 18626
Phone: 570-946-5020

Hours: May 31–September 1 — Thursday–Saturdays 1:00 p.m to 5:00 p.m.
Rest of Year: By Appointment (please call)
The Museum has an extensive collection of genealogies as well as historical records and documents. There is a large listing of maps online that are available at the museum.
The obituary listing is from 1800 to 1999 and online. Then you can order the obituaries for $5.00 each.

Endless Mountains War Memorial Museum
Main Street
Box 7166
Sonestown, PA 17758
Phone: 570-482-2610

The website has a few lists of casualties and genealogical information. The museum has memorabilia and is non-profit.
Societies[edit | edit source]

Rich in history, Sullivan County contains a few societies dealing with the history of the area.

Sullivan County Historical Society and Museum
458 Meylert St
Laporte, PA 18626
Phone: 570-946-5020

Hours: May 31–September 1 — Thursday–Saturdays 1:00 p.m to 5:00 p.m.
Rest of Year: By Appointment (please call)
The Society holdings are housed at the museum.

Taxation[edit | edit source]

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. While the records for that time period are available, there were few events recorded. County marriage records were kept in earnest in 1885. Births and deaths, at the county level, were begun in 1893 and kept through 1905. Abstracts and copies of vital records are available for some counties, but most are incomplete. For the most complete set of records, always contact the County Orphans' Court.

See also How to order Pennsylvania Vital Records

Birth[edit | edit source]

Early births 1893–1905 are located at the County Orphans' Court. See the heading Court Records on this page for contact information.

Indexes for Pennsylvania birth records are available through the Department of of Health for 1906 and 1907. Once an individual is located in the index a non certified Birth certificate can be obtained by writing and sending $3.00 to:

Division of Vital Records
ATTN: Public Records
P.O. Box 1528
New Castle, PA 16103

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Pennsylvania marriages are located at the county level. Contact the Evancol/Sandbox/Sullivan clerk's office for these records.

  • 1677–1950 - Pennsylvania Civil Marriages, 1677-1950 at FamilySearch — index and images
  • 1700-1821 - Pennsylvania Marriage Records$) This database is incomplete for all counties.
  • 1725-1976 - Pennsylvania, Marriages, 1709-1940 - free index. Not complete for all years. This index is an electronic database of information. The entries are primarily from the International Genealogical Index (IGI) along with some entries derived from compiled and original records such as: Family Records, Church Records, Civil Registration. It may also include indexes generated by the internet indexing project sponsored by FamilySearch.
  • Pre-1810 – Pennsylvania Marriages$) This database is incomplete for all counties. Includes 35,000 marriage records from vol. VIII of of the second series of the Pennsylvania Archives.
  • 1852-1854 - Pennsylvania Marriages$) Index with images.
  • 1885-1950 - Pennsylvania County Marriage, 1885-1950 Extracted marriage records – free. Most of the records consist of marriage licenses, certificates, applications, docket books, and affidavits. This database is incomplete for all counties. May also contain marriage records earlier than 1885.
  • Marriage Docket of Edward Eldred, J.P. 1809-1835
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.

Death[edit | edit source]

Early deaths 1893–1905 are located at the County Orphans' Court. See the heading Court Records on this page for contact information.

Indexes for Pennsylvania death records are available through the Department of Health for 1906 through 1962. Once an individual is located in the index a non certified death certificate can be obtained obtained by writing and sending $3.00 to:

Division of Vital Records
ATTN: Public Records
P.O. Box 1528
New Castle, PA 16103

Sullivan County Pennsylvania Genealogy Websites[edit | edit source]

Sullivan County Pennsylvania Places[edit | edit source]

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

Sullivan County Pennsylvania Genealogy References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), [FHL book 973 D27e 2002].
  2. Wikipedia contributors, "Sullivan County, Pennsylvania" in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia at,_Pennsylvania.
  3. The Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania accessed 10 July 2012.
  4. Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania, Clerk of Courts in (accessed 25 Aug 2012)
  5. The Philadelphia Courts at accessed 10 July 2012
  6. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at