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New York Vital Records
User Rank: Beginner
Joined: 2/4/2012
Posts: 6

Created By:Darlene Burbine

How early do these records begin ? I've noticed a vast difference between Ma. and N.Y. records. I've tried to find records for ancestors one born 1796 and other 1800 in N.Y. state and cannot find any. I also cannot find record of marriage or birth records for children born In N.Y. . I've been able to find them on census of 1850 and 1860. I also have their records of death in Massachusetts.  

User Rank: Contributor
Joined: 8/9/2010
Posts: 24

Created By:Virginia

New York didn't require registration of vital records until well into the 1880s.  In fact, even after this legislation was enacted, compliance was spotty at first.

There are other ways to determine these facts.  One major one is church records, which will record baptisms, marriages and sometimes deaths.  Newspapers are another good source.  I have found that deed and probate records can be a gold mine of information.

Don't neglect guardianship records as they can give the relationships of family members.

However, I still keep running into snags in trying to find my NY ancestors.  You just have to keep digging and perhaps have a bit of luck.



User Rank: Beginner
Joined: 8/9/2010
Posts: 1

Created By:Nannette W

I do a lot of research in NY State, It depends on which County you are researching. There are 2 sites that are outstanding, one is the Delaware County genweb site and the other is the Tri-County site which includes Chemung Co. NY and Tioga and Bradford County in PA. Another site that is good is Green County, but you want Sylvia Hasenkopf's site. They are continually updating these sites.

Don't overlook the historians in any of the counties, I have found them to be a great help and have received records, photo's etc. from many of them.

You can also find many records in the card catalog on Be sure to use the "old search" when doing any research, as less information needs to be entered. I found a lot of ancestors with just the last name and county, especially census records. In the card catalog I use no names just the alphabetical listings for eg: Dutch Church Records, d then du etc. You can also find some counties that way too, for eg Columbia, c then co, col etc.

Hope this helps you.


User Rank: Beginner
Joined: 5/20/2011
Posts: 6

Created By:Judi Temple
I've recently been working through the same challenge.  I found a guardianship record from 1840 Troy online through the card catalogue on  I have found books with transcriptions of church records in the genealogical section of a local library and they included baptisms and marriages dating back to the mid 1700's - my family in particular were from Claverack (later Hudson, Columbia County) and Livingston area.  I also found burial records from cemeteries on film around Troy and books with cemetery transcriptions for that area of NY.  There are also some indices of obits compiled by the DAR as well.  Good luck!

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