Sussex County, New Jersey Genealogy

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Sussex County

Sussex County, New Jersey ancestry, family history, and genealogy research page. Guide to genealogy, history, and 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.


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Sussex County, New Jersey
Map
Map of New Jersey highlighting Sussex County
Location in the state of New Jersey
Map of the U.S. highlighting New Jersey
Location of New Jersey in the U.S.
Facts
Founded June 8, 1753
County Seat Newton
Courthouse
Sussex County New Jersey Courthouse.jpg
Address Sussex County Courthouse
43-47 High Street
Newton, NJ 07860
Phone: (973) 579-0675


County Information

Sussex County, New Jersey Record Dates

Beginning Dates for Major County Records
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate
1753 (more widely 1795) 1790 1753 (more widely 1789) 1753 (more widely 1789)

NOTE: Sussex County was created in 1753. For any area records dating from 1694 – 1714, see Burlington County, 1714 – 1739 – see Hunterdon County, 1739 – 1753 – see Morris County.

Sussex County, New Jersey Historical Facts

Local histories are available for New Jersey counties. County histories may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories see the wiki page section New Jersey Local Histories.


Parent County

Boundary Changes

The area of Sussex county has historically belonged to :

At the time of its creation, Sussex County included current Sussex and Warren Counties, as well as part of New York State. A boundary dispute between New York and New Jersey after the French and Indian War settled the border between the two states (and, in the process, also the northern border of the county) in 1769. [4]

For animated maps illustrating New Jersey county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation New Jersey County Boundary Maps" (1683-1928) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Record Loss

There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county. For information on which federal censuses for the entire state of New Jersey have survived, see this list of available and lost census schedules.

Resources

Bible

Cemeteries

Tombstone Transcriptions Online Tombstone Transcriptions in Print List of Cemeteries in the county
Findagrave.com Family History Library Findagrave.com
NJGenWeb WorldCat Billion Graves
NJGenWeb Archives
NJTombstone Project
NJInterment
EPodunk
Billion Graves
See New Jersey Cemeteries for more information.

Federal Census

See the New Jersey federal census collection page for availability.

State Census

  • 1671 Census of New Castle County, Delaware, Philadelphia and Delaware Counties, PA, and Burlington County, NJ – published in Peter Stebbins Craig, 1671 Census of the Delaware (Philadelphia, Pa.: Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania, 1999)[FHL Book 974 X2c 1671]. 
  • 1693 a special census of Swedes associated with the Swedish Lutheran Church also included the area of Burlington County, NJ – published in in Craig, Peter Stebbins. The 1693 Census of the Swedes on the Delaware. Winter Park, Florida: SAG Publications, 1993. (Family History Library book 973 X4c)

Church Record

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. For general information about denominations, view the New Jersey Church Records wiki page.


For information on churches in Sussex County, see:

New Jersey Historical Records Survey. Directory of churches in New Jersey, vol. XIX. Sussex County. Newark, N.J.: The Historical Records Survey, 1940. (FHL 974.976 E4h)

For information on church records held by the Sussex County Historical Society, see:

Sussex County Historical Society (New Jersey) available church records. Unpublished manuscript. (FHL 974.976 C4s)

Specific Congregations:

  • 1741-1830 - "Church Register of the Walpeck Congregation," The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record, Baptisms 1741-1753: Vol. 40, No. 3 (Jul. 1909):193-205; Baptisms 1753-1772: Vol. 40, No. 4 (Oct. 1909):264-275; Baptisms 1772-1791: Vol. 41, No. 1 (Jan. 1910):28-43; Baptisms 1791-1807: Vol. 41, No. 2 (Apr. 1910):83-98; Baptisms 1807-1816: Vol. 41, No. 3 (Jul. 1910):200-215; Baptisms 1817-1830, Marriages 1741-1769: Vol. 41, No. 4 (Oct. 1910):345-366. Digital version at New York Family History ($); FHL Book 974.7 B2n v. 40-41. Internet Archive has digitized Vol. 40 and Vol. 41 - free.[5]
  • 1785-1819 - Canfield, Amos. "The Clove Dutch Reformed Church of Clove Valley, Wantage, Sussex Co., N.J.," The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record, Baptisms 1785-1801: Vol. 57, No. 4 (Oct. 1926):355-364; Baptisms 1801-1818, Marriages 1798-1812, Membership Lists 1793-1819, 1787 Petition, List of Elders and Deacons 1788-1806: Vol. 58, No. 1 (Jan. 1927):45-55. Digital version at New York Family History ($); FHL Book 974.7 B2n v. 57-58.

County-Level Records

Available from the New Jersey State Archives:

Court Records

  • Stark, Brad and Carol Stark. [Court of General Quarter Sessions of the Peace (Sussex County)]. The minute book of Sussex County, New Jersey, court records, 1764-1766. Bowie, Maryland : Heritage Books, 1993.
  • New Jersey. Court of Common Pleas (Sussex County). Court records, 1778-1902 [Sussex County, New Jersey]. FHL microfilm 961012. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah. (Includes naturalizations (1808-1902), slaves' births (1804-1833), and officers' oaths of office and allegiance (1778-1856). Parts indexed. Also browsable online.
  • New Jersey. Orphans' Court (Sussex County). Minutes, 1804-1903. FHL microfilms 960526 - 960533. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.
  • New Jersey. Circuit Court (Sussex County). Circuit Court judgements, 1838-1907. FHL microfilms 959881, 959882, 961008-961011. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.
  • Meeker, Sharon. Sussex County, New Jersey marriages from Justice-of-the-Peace dockets 1773-1828. Budd Lake, NJ : Legacy of America, 1999. (Please note that this includes only the marriages performed by the justices of the peace.)

On the website of the New Jersey State Archives, users can search for and order photocopies ($) of the following types of records:

Directories

Some Sussex County towns and villages are included in the following:

  • Ancestry.com. „U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.“ Database. Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com. Provo, UT: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011. ($)
  • Ancestry.com. „U.S. Public Records Index, 1950-1993.“ Vol. 1-2. Database. Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com. Provo, UT: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010. ($)

Emigration and Immigration

New Jersey State Archives hold Sussex County naturalization records for 1817-1952, and will perform searches with 5-year-time spans ($). Naturalization records from NJ federal district courts are located at the Northeast Branch of the National Archives, One Bowling Green, 3rd Floor, New York, NY 10004.

Ethnic, Political,or Religious Groups

Gazetteers

  • Webb, Edward A.„The historical directory of Sussex County, N.J. : containing a brief summary of events from its first settlement, with descriptive and historical notices of each town : also, the name and post office address of each freeholder.“ Database. Ancestry.com . http://www.ancestry.com : 2005. Extracted from Webb, Edward A. The historical directory of Sussex County, N.J. : containing a brief summary of events from its first settlement, with descriptive and historical notices of each town : also, the name and post office address of each freeholder. Andover, N.J.: [unknown]. 1872. ($)

Genealogy

  • Agthe, Claire Keenan. Research in New Jersey. Special publications of the National Genealogical Society. Research in the States Series. No. 94. Arlington, VA: National Genealogical Society, 2009.
  • Biographical and genealogical history of Morris and Sussex Counties, New Jersey. Vol. I. Chicago, IL: Lewis Publishing Company. 1899. Image copy. Hathitrust. : 2016.  Vol. II. Chicago, IL: Lewis Publishing Company. 1899. Image copy. Hathitrust. : 2016
  • Daughters of the American Revolution. Chinckchewunska Chapter (New Jersey). “Articles copied from old newspapers, Unionville, New York records and pioneer families of northwestern New Jersey.” 1 Vol. Bound manuscript. 1937. National Library of the Daughters of American Revolution, Washington, DC. FHL microfilm 860298 (item 7, image 589). Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah. (Please note: also browsable online.)
  • Molé, Deborah L., David A. Ranzan, Janette Maria Pardo and Sarah J. Lambert. Sussex County (N.J) marriage and obituary dates : (1814-1903) : information for the years spanning 1814-1895. Apollo, Pennsylvania : Closson Press, 2006.
  • Stickney, Charles E. Old Sussex families of the Minisink region. Washington, New Jersey : Genealogical Researchers, 1988. FHL microfilm 6101286. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.

History

Local histories are available for New Jersey counties. County histories may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories see the wiki page section New Jersey Local Histories.


  • Haines, Alanson A. Hardyston memorial: a history of the township and the North Presbyterian Church, Hardyston, Sussex County, New Jersey. Newton, N.J.: New Jersey Herald Print. 1888. Image copy. Internet Archive. : 2016
  • Kanouse, Peter. „A historical sermon designed as a memorial to the inhabitants of Wantage, Sussex County, N.J. : containing an account of the first emigrants, their pedigree, dangers, deliverance, habits, religion, means of instruction, increase, improvements, and the present state of society amoung their descendants.“ Database. Ancestry.com. : 2005. Extracted from: Kanouse, Peter. A historical sermon designed as a memorial to the inhabitants of Wantage, Sussex County, N.J. : containing an account of the first emigrants, their pedigree, dangers, deliverance, habits, religion, means of instruction, increase, improvements, and the present state of society amoung their descendants. Newton, N.J.: New Jersey Herald. 1878. ($)
  • Lanning, Nathan H. „ A history of the Yellow Frame Presbyterian Church, Fredon Township, Sussex County, New Jersey.“ Database. Ancestry.com .:  2004. Extracted from: Lanning, Nathan H. A history of the Yellow Frame Presbyterian Church, Fredon Township, Sussex County, New Jersey. [unknown]: [unknown]. [1984?]. ($)
  • Schaeffer, Casper, and William M. Johnson. Memoirs and reminiscences together with sketches of the early history of Sussex County, New Jersey. Hackensack, NJ: [self-published]. 1907. Image copy. Internet Archive. : 2016.
  • Snell, James P., and W. W. Clayton. History of Sussex and Warren Counties, New Jersey: with illustrations and biographical sketches of its prominent men and pioneers. Philadelphia: Everts & Peck. 1881. Image copy. Internet Archive. : 2016. See also:
    • „Index, Snell [sic] history of Sussex Co., N.J.“ Database. Ancestry.com: 2005. Extracted from Beatrice Mitten Adams, Index, Snell history of Sussex County, N.J..[unpublished] : photocopy (typescript). 1964.($)
  • „Sussex County sesqui-centennial, September 2, 1903 : including centennial address of Benjamin B. Edsall.“ Database. Ancestry.com. http:// www.ancestry.com : 2005. Extracted from Sussex County sesqui-centennial, September 2, 1903 : including centennial address of Benjamin B. Edsall. [Newton, N.J.?]: The Sesqui-Centennial Committee. [1903?]. ($)
  • Webb, Edward A.„The historical directory of Sussex County, N.J. : containing a brief summary of events from its first settlement, with descriptive and historical notices of each town : also, the name and post office address of each freeholder.“ Database. Ancestry.com . http://www.ancestry.com  : 2005. Extracted from Webb, Edward A. The historical directory of Sussex County, N.J. : containing a brief summary of events from its first settlement, with descriptive and historical notices of each town : also, the name and post office address of each freeholder. Andover, N.J.: [unknown]. 1872. ($)

Land and Property

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents.

See New Jersey Land and Property for information about New Jersey Proprietary land records. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse and where records are currently housed.


  • „Abstracts of divisions of Warren and Sussex County estates filed at Sussex County courthouse, Newton, New Jersey, from 1789-1918.“ Database. Ancestry.comhttp://www.ancestry.com  : 2005. Extracted from Frederick R. Alleman, Abstracts of divisions of Warren and Sussex County estates filed at Sussex County courthouse, Newton, New Jersey, from 1789-1918.[unpublished] : photocopy (typescript). 1978.
  • „Maps of divisions of Warren and Sussex County estates filed at Newton, New Jersey between 1789-1918.“ Database. Ancestry.comhttp://www.ancestry.com  : 2005. Extracted from Virginia Alleman Brown, Maps of divisions of Warren and Sussex County estates filed at Newton, New Jersey between 1789-1918.[manuscript] : [unpublished]. 1978.

Maps

„Maps of divisions of Warren and Sussex County estates filed at Newton, New Jersey between 1789-1918.“ Database. Ancestry.comhttp://www.ancestry.com  : 2005. Extracted from Virginia Alleman Brown, Maps of divisions of Warren and Sussex County estates filed at Newton, New Jersey between 1789-1918.[manuscript] : [unpublished]. 1978.

Migration

Military

  • „Sussex County residents who have died in the service of their country during wartime.„ Database. Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com : 2004. Extracted from Jeffrey S. Muti. Sussex County residents who have died in the service of their country during wartime. [manuscript]: [unpublished], 1982. ($)
  • Rutgers University’s Alexander Library’s genealogy collection houses the Chester N. Jones Collection of 30,000 cards on New Jersey soldiers in the Revolution.

Searches for the following types of records can be requested from the New Jersey State Archives (all $, payment by check or money order only):

  • Revolutionary War Record Search
  • World War I Record Search
  • Military Service Records Request Form (covers War of 1812, Spanish-American War, Punitive Expedition to Mexico in 1916, National Guard records 1869-1917, records from the New Jersey Home for Disabled Soldiers)

Naturalization and Citizenship

(See 'Emigration and Immigration' above)

Newspapers

  • „[Newspaper clippings from the Sussex Register].“ Database. Ancestry.comhttp://www.ancestry.com  : 2005. Extracted from [Newspaper clippings from the Sussex register]. Newton, N.J.: The Register, 1897-1899.
  • „One hundred years of the Sussex register and county of Sussex, 1813-1913 : record of historical, biographical, industrial and statistical events during a century.“ Database. Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com  : 2005. Extracted from: One hundred years of the Sussex register and county of Sussex, 1813-1913 : record of historical, biographical, industrial and statistical events during a century. Newton, N.J.: The Register. [1932?]. ($)
  • Back runs of Lake Hopatcong Breeze (Lake Hopatcong) for 1894-1924, Sussex Register (Newton) for 1814-1828 (complete run), and Wantage Recorder (Wantage) for 1894-1923 can be purchased in microform from the New Jersey State Library. ($)

Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Sussex County, New Jersey Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:


Occupations

Periodicals

Photographs

Periodicals

Photographs

New Jersey State Archives has a number of searchable photograph collections. Researchers can then order copies of images ($, check or money order only). The following collections are available:

  • World War I Deaths (3,427 names, 9,310 scanned images – includes descriptive cards, photographs and correspondence. This database includes an information card (and often a photograph) of 3,427 fallen soldiers from New Jersey. Each card includes the following: name; service number; race; residence; place and date of enlistment; place and date of birth; organizations served in and dates of assignment/transfer; date killed or otherwise died (if not killed in action, cause of death); wounds or injuries received; and the name and address of the person notified of the death. Many cards include a photograph.)
  • Department of Agriculture Photographs (7,111 photographs  - 4,036 scanned images (which can be ordered in digital format)); this series consists of over 14,000 prints and dating from about 1920 to1983, with a few images from as early as the 1880s. The photographs were originally taken to illustrate the publications of the New Jersey Department of Agriculture.)
  • New Jersey National Guard Photographs (1,316 images, dating from the mid-19th century through the 1980s, with the majority (759 images) taken before 1945; also includes scrapbooks etc)
  • Federal Writers' Project Photographs (3,911 images of sites, people and activities collected in the 1930ies)

Probate Records

Probate records created after 1852 are held by the Sussex County, New Jersey Genealogy Probate Court. From 1797 or the creation of the county, probate records were held by the Court of Common Pleas. Most counties transferred all records to the Probate Court, but in some circumstances, Court of Common Pleas records should be searched for records prior to 1852. Most records are housed at the Sussex County, New Jersey Genealogy Courthouse. Some records are on microfilm at the Ohio Genealogical Society and the Family History Library. For more complete information about the location of county probate records see:

See the wiki page New Jersey Probate Records for information about how to use probate records.

Content: Probate Records may give the decedent's date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, neighbors, associates, relatives, and their place of residence.

Record types: Wills, estates, guardianships, naturalizations, marriage, adoption, and birth and death records (1867-1908 only).

Obtaining Copies of County Probate Records

Copies of recorded probate records and the estate files can be obtained from the surrogate's offices for a fee. Addresses of surrogate's offices are found in:

  • Eichholz, Alice, Editor. Ancestry's Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources. Revised Edition. Salt Lake City, Utah: Ancestry, 1992. (Family History Library book 973 D27rb 1992.) Explains state-by-state history, vital records, census, background sources, periodicals, archives, libraries, societies, maps, land, probate, court, tax, cemetery, church, and military records. Includes county boundary map and table which shows when each county was created and the parent counties.

In addition, copies of the original wills, administrations, inventories, and guardianships sent to Trenton since 1901 can be ordered from:

Clerk of the Superior Court
Records Information Center
P.O. Box 967
Trenton, NJ 08625-0967
Phone: (609) 292-4978
Fax: (609) 777-0094

Online Probate Records

Repositories

Archives

New Jersey Historical Records Survey. „Inventory of the county archives of New Jersey. No. 19 : Sussex County (Newton).„ Database. Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com  : 2004. Extracted from New Jersey Historical Records Survey Inventory of the county archives of New Jersey. No. 19 : Sussex County (Newton). Newark, N.J.: The Historical Records Survey, 1941. ($)

Courthouse
Family History Centers

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.

Libraries

Rutgers University’s Alexander Library is an invaluable repository for any New Jersey researchers, as it houses collections deposited by the Genealogical Society of New Jersey and the New Jersey State Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Family Bible records and extensive notes and collected compilations by professional genealogists make up the most unique part of this collection. The genealogical collections are open to the public during the regular opening hours, and a university affiliation or special membership is not necessary to use them.

Of particular interest to Sussex County researchers:

  • Warren P. Coon Collection, comprised of 20,000 cards on (primarily 19th century) families of Sussex and Warren Counties. (Filed alphabetically by surname.)
  • Helen P. Alleman / Patricia A. Weibezahl Collection - materials (in both notebooks and folders) on families in northwestern New Jersey.

Sussex County Public Library (both main library and the branches) have amassed unique genealogy and local history collections, and the library has created a surname index which allows researchers to pinpoint specific resources.  (Please note that some materials are only accessible by appointment, so contact the library ahead of time.)

Highlights of the collection of the Main Library:

  • Perlee Collection – Files and notes by noted local genealogist Alfred Perlee. (This collection is in closed stacks – please identify the surnames of interest, and library staff will pull the necessary files.)
  • Crawn Collection – Files and notes by Sussex County genealogist Francis S. Crawn. (Records are on microfilm, arranged alphabetically by family name.)
  • Decker Scrapbooks – 14 scrapbooks of clippings collected by members of the Decker family. Topics include history of New Jersey and Sussex County in particular. (Consult reference librarian on duty for the index.)
  • Cemetery & Church Vertical File – transcripts and lists.
  • Genealogy Vertical File – miscellaneous notes and files on local families, donated by researchers.
  • Local History Vertical Files – various materials on local history, institutions organizations, schools, etc. List of vertical file subjects can be found here.

Sussex-Wantage Branch

Sussex-Wantage Branch Library has its own genealogy and local history vertical files, as well as family Charts and materials on Wantage Township Cemeteries prepared and donated by local researcher Muriel Robertson.

Dorothy Henry Branch

Dorothy Henry Branch Library also has its own genealogy and local history vertical files’ collection (see the list of subjects), as well as articles, clippings and interview transcripts collected by local historian Dr. Roswell S. Coles (the Roswell Coles Scrapbooks).

Franklin Branch

Franklin Branch Library has many materials on the history of Franklin High School, including yearbooks and other Franklin HS material, as well as a unique collection of materials related to early mining in Sussex County, collected by the late Mr. Frederic J. Stephens (The Stephens Collection) - maps, books, pictures, letters and articles. (Viewing by appointment only – contact the library to schedule.)

Museums
Societies

Sussex County Historical Society
82 Main Street, Box 913
Newton, NJ 07860
Telephone:973-383-6010
E-mail:sussexcountyhs@gmail.com
Website

Wallpack Historical Society
PO Box 212
Layton, N.J. 07851
Telephone: 973-948-6671
Website

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Wikipedia
Wikipedia has more about this subject: Sussex County,  New Jersey

Schools

  • „Catalogue of the officers and students of Newton Collegiate Institute, Newton, Sussex County, New Jersey, for the year 1874 : with the course of study.“ Database. Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com : 2004. Extracted from Catalogue of the officers and students of Newton Collegiate Institute, Newton, Sussex County, New Jersey, for the year 1874 : with the course of study. [Newton, N.J.?]: „Sussex Register“ Job Office. 1874. ($)
  • Smith, Minnie D. „Sussex County school sojourn in the 1890's.“ Database. Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com :  2005. Extracted from: Smith, Minnie D.. Sussex County school sojourn in the 1890's. Belvidere, N.J.: Poyer Press. 1964. ($)

Taxation

New Jersey tax records complement land records and can be used in place of censuses before 1820 or to supplement the years between censuses. Because only persons who owned taxable property were listed, many residents were not included in tax lists. There may also be gaps of several years in the tax records of some counties. For more information see the wiki page New Jersey Taxation.


Vital Records

Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents. United States Vital Records has additional research guidance on researching and using vital records. A copy or an extract of most original records can be purchased from the New Jersey Vital Records State Department of Health or the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred. Original marriage records are usually held at the county Bureau of Vital Statistics.


Sussex County, New Jersey Web Sites

Sussex County, New Jersey Neighboring counties

Sussex County


Sussex County, New Jersey Genealogy References

  1. Wikipedia.org
  2. Wikipedia.org
  3. 3.0 3.1 Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), 181. [FHL book 973 D27e 2002].
  4. Wikipedia.org
  5. WeRelate contributors, "Source:New York Genealogical and Biographical Record (New York Genealogical and Biographical Society)," in WeRelate, http://www.werelate.org/wiki/Source:New_York_Genealogical_and_Biographical_Record_%28New_York_Genealogical_and_Biographical_Society%29, accessed 9 February 2011.


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