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Adams County, Pennsylvania
Genealogy, History & Facts

Adams County, Pennsylvania Facts

Adams County

When was Adams County, PA Created?
Adams County was established on January 22, 1800 from York County. The county was named in honor of John Adams,second U.S. President.

What is the County Seat of Adams County, PA?
The County Seat is located in Gettysburg and in addition the county government website is

What counties are adjacent to Adams County, PA?
Bordering Counties are Cumberland County (north), York County (east), Carroll County, Maryland (southeast), Frederick County, Maryland (southwest), Franklin County (west).

Adams County Townships Map

What cities and towns are in Adams County, PA?
Municipalities located in Adams County include Townships: Berwick, Butler, Conewago, Cumberland, Franklin, Freedom, Germany, Hamilton, Hamiltonban, Highland, Huntington, Latimore, Liberty, Menallen, Mount Joy, Mount Pleasant, Oxford, Reading, Straban, Tyrone, Union. Boroughs: Abbottstown, Arendtsville, Bendersville, Biglerville, Bonneauville, Carroll Valley, East Berlin, Fairfield, Gettysburg, Littlestown, McSherrystown, New Oxford, York Springs. See also Adams County Municipalities Incorporation Dates.

Adams County, PA Vital Records

Where can find Adams County Birth, marriage, Divorce and Death Records?
Adams County vital records can be found at the Pennsylvania Office of Vital Records has copies of birth and death records since 1906 and death records. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in Pennsylvania for current fees and application process. Birth, marriage, and death records are connected with central life events.

You can search online for Adams County Birth, Marriage, Divorce or Death Records. You can also Order Electronically Online or can download an application for Pennsylvania  Birth CertificateDeath Certificate Applications to mail. Walk-in service is available at any of these six public offices: Erie, Harrisburg, New Castle, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh or Scranton.

Adams County, PA Census Records

What Adams County, PA census records are available?
There are many types of census records for Adams County guide you in researching your family tree. Federal Population Schedules are available for 1800, 1810, 1820, 1830, 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.

Adams Co. Mortality Schedules can be obtained for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Adams Co. Industry and Agriculture Schedules can be acquired for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Adams Co. Union Veterans Schedules can be found for 1890. You can find free down-loadable and also printable census forms to help you with your research. See Also Pennsylvania Census Records Research Guide

Adams County, PA Courthouse and Government Records

Adams County Courthouse

What genealogical records can I find in the Adams County Courthouse?
The below facts shows exactly what death, marriage, birth, property, wills, and court records are typically in Adams County. The years listed below are the first noted records with this county. See Also Pennsylvania Corthouse Records Research Guide.

  • Adams County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
    • Address: 111-117 Baltimore Street, Gettysburg, PA 17325
    • Phone: (717) 334-6781 Register of Wills
  • Adams County Recorder of Deeds is responsible for recording documents related to property. Documents recorded consist of, but are not limited to, deeds, mortgages, restrictions, notaries, public and elected county officers. Other documents, such as Military Service Discharges, foreign birth certificates, as well as obscure documents like cattle brands, are also recorded here.
    • Land Records: 1800
  • Adams County Prothonotary / Clerk of Courts has been the clerk of court of common pleas since 1707. Court records here include divorces, naturalizations, peddlers' licenses, registration of attorneys, oaths of county officers, equity, sheriff's sales, juror lists, some tax records, and some civil court records.Other court records are with the clerk of courts.
    • Court & Divorce Records: 1800
  • Adams County Register of Wills / Orphan's Court Clerk are often the same person, sometimes sharing the responsibility of the recorder of deeds and clerk of courts as well. The Register of Wills' principal duties include probating wills and accepting for filing all documents necessary to complete the administration of a decedent's estate. The Clerk of Orphans' Court, our office serves as the filing office and custodian of records for matters involving adoptions, guardianships and estate litigation. The office also issues all marriage licenses. Since 1885 the clerk of the orphans' court in each county has had the responsibility of recording marriages
    • Marriage & Probate Records: 1800 
    • Birth & Death Records: before Jan 1906
  • Adams County Tax Assessor Office has tax records but may also be in the county commissioners' office or with the prothonotary.
  • Pennsylvania, Wills and Probate Records, 1683-1993
  • Early Pennsylvania Land Records  
  • BLM Land Records

Adams County, PA Societies and Family History Resources

What genealogical and historical societies, archives, museums, associations and libraries are available for Adams County, PA?
A list of Adams County Historical  and Genealogical Societies, Libraries, Archives. See also list of Statewide Pennsylvania Archives, Historical & Genealogical Societies.

Where can I connect with other Adams County, PA Researchers through message boards and forums?

What other genealogical resources are available in Adams County, PA?
The following are web links to Genealogy, Records and Resources pertaining to Adams County. Each of these genealogy links fall into 3 categories: Business oriented Sites, Private Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some require a cost. This is basically a listing which has been compiled or submitted. I do not recommend or promote one genealogy site over another.

Adams Co. PA Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

Adams Co. PA Books, Newspapers & Publications

Adams Co. PA Church / Bible Records & Cemeteries / Graveyards

Adams Co. PA Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

Adams Co. PA General and History Websites

Adams Co. PA Immigration & Naturalization

Adams Co. PA Military Records

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