New Jersey, Middlesex County Probate Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at



Record Description

The collection consists of probate records (bound volumes) from the Middlesex County Surrogate Court in New Brunswick, New Jersey for the years 1830 to 1921. These records augment the microfilms we filmed in 1972. The records contain the following types of documents:

  • Will Books
  • Applications for Administration
  • Applications for Probate
  • Administrators Bonds
  • Letters of Guardianship
You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for New Jersey, Middlesex County Probate Records, 1830-1921.

Record Content

The exact information found in the records varies but the following is usually found:

  • Name of testator or deceased
  • Names of heirs such as spouse, children, and other relatives or friends
  • Names of witnesses
  • Residence of testator
  • Lists of belongings, property, and so forth
  • Document and recording dates (Sometimes the date of death will be given.)
  • Recording dates

How to Use the Record

To begin your search, it is helpful to know:

  • The place of residence
  • The approximate death or probate date
  • The name of the deceased

Search the Collection

To search the collection:
⇒Select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page
⇒Select the "Volume, Title and Year" category which takes you to the images

Look at each image comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine if the image relates to them. You may need to look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination. Keep in mind:

  • There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.
  • Your ancestor may have used different names or variations of their name throughout their life.

Using the Information

When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family. For example:

  • Use probate records to identify heirs and relatives.
  • Use the document (such as the will) or the recording dates to approximate a death date.
  • Use the information in the probate record to substitute for civil birth and death records, since the probates exist for an earlier time period.
  • Use the birth date or age along with the residence or place of birth of the deceased to locate census, church, and land records.
  • Use the recording date approximate the death date. For example, a letter of administration was usually written shortly after the time of death.

Tips to Keep in mind

  • You may be able to use the probate record to learn about
Land transactions
Adoptions or guardianship of any minor children and dependents
  • Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname as the deceased; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have died in the same county or nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family or even the second marriage of a parent. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • Wills are more likely to be found in rural communities than in larger cities and industrial areas.
  • The information in the records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the deceased or the testator.
  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after 1900.
  • There is also some variation in the information given from one record to another record.

Tips to Keep in Mind

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
  • Check for an index. There are often indexes created by the court or local historical and genealogical societies.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.

For a summary of this information see the wiki article: United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records).

Related Websites

Middlesex County New Jersey Court Records Directory

Related Wiki Articles

How You Can Contribute

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.

Citations for This Collection

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information; that is, cite your sources. This will help people find the record again and evaluate the reliability of the source. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records. Citations are available for the collection as a whole and each record or image individually.

Collection Citation

"New Jersey, Middlesex County Probate Records, 1830-1921" Images. FamilySearch. : accessed 2015. Citing Surrogate Court, New Brunswick.

Image Citation

The citation for an image is available on each image in this collection by clicking Show Citation at the bottom left of the image screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for New Jersey, Middlesex County Probate Records, 1830-1921.


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  • This page was last modified on 10 August 2015, at 16:24.
  • This page has been accessed 6,319 times.