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Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania
Genealogy, History & Facts

Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania Facts

Philadelphia County

Philadelphia County was established in 1682 as one of three original counties. The county was named for the "Brotherly love" from Greek philos ("love") and adelphos ("brother").

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

What counties are adjacent to Philadelphia County, PA?
Bordering Counties are Montgomery County (north), Bucks County (northeast), Burlington County, New Jersey (east), Camden County, New Jersey (southeast), Gloucester County, New Jersey (south), Delaware County (west).

Philadelphia County Townships Map

What cities and towns are in Philadelphia County, PA?
Municipalities located in Philadelphia County include Districts, Townships and Boroughs of the County of Philadelphia Before 1854: Aramingo Borough, Belmont District, Blockley, Bridesburg Borough, Bristol, Byberry, Delaware, Frankford Borough, Germantown Borough, Germantown, Kensington District, Kingsessing, Lower Dublin, Manayunk Borough, Moreland, Moyamensing District, Northern Liberties District, Northern Liberties, Oxford, Passyunk, Penn District, Penn, Philadelphia City, Roxborough, Richmond District, Southwark District, Spring Garden District, West Philadelphia Borough, Whitehall Borough. See also Philadelphia County Municipalities Incorporation Dates.

Philadelphia County, PA Vital Records

Where can find Philadelphia County Birth, marriage, Divorce and Death Records?
Philadelphia 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 Philadelphia 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.

Philadelphia County, PA Census Records

What Philadelphia County, PA census records are available?
There are many types of census records for Philadelphia County guide you in researching your family tree. Federal Population Schedules are available for 1790, 1800, 1810, 1820, 1830, 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.

Philadelphia Co. Mortality Schedules can be obtained for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Philadelphia Co. Industry and Agriculture Schedules can be acquired for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Philadelphia 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

Philadelphia County, PA Courthouse and Government Records

Philadelphia County Courthouse

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

  • Philadelphia 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.
    • Address: Department of Records, Room 156, City Hall, Philadelphia, PA 19107
    • Phone: (215) 686-2261
    • Land Records: 1684
  • Philadelphia 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.
    • Address: First Judicial District of Pennsylvania, Room 284 City Hall, Philadelphia, PA 19107
    • Phone: 215 686-6652
    • Court & Divorce Records: 1682
  • Philadelphia 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
    • Address: Room 180 City Hall, Philadelphia, PA 19107
    • Phone: (215) 686-6250
    • Marriage & Probate Records: 1682 ; (215) 686-2234
    • Birth & Death Records: before Jan 1906
  • Philadelphia County Tax Assessor Office has tax records but may also be in the county commissioners' office or with the prothonotary.
  • Minutes of the Common Council of the city of Philadelphia, 1704 to 1776 . See also Philadelphia Old Rights (Index)
  • Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania Wills, 1682-1819
  • Runaway Servants, Convicts, and Apprentices
  • Early Pennsylvania Land Records  
  • BLM Land Records

Philadelphia County, PA Societies and Family History Resources

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

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

What other genealogical resources are available in Philadelphia County, PA?
The following are web links to Genealogy, Records and Resources pertaining to Philadelphia 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.

Philadelphia Co. PA Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers

Philadelphia Co. PA Books, Newspapers & Publications

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

Philadelphia Co. PA Family Websites, Pictures & Histories

Philadelphia Co. PA General and History Websites

Philadelphia Co. PA Immigration & Naturalization

Philadelphia Co. PA Military Records

Philadelphia Co. PA Schools & Directories

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