Cape May County, New Jersey Genealogy

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Guide to Cape May County, New Jersey ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, and military records.

County Facts
County seat: Cape May Court House
Organized: 1685
Parent County(s): Burlington[1]
Neighboring Counties
Atlantic  • Cumberland
See County Maps
Courthouse
New Jersey, Cape May County Courthouse.png
Location Map
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County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

Cape May County is located in the southern tip of the state. It was created in 1685. Cape May Court House, Middle Township is the county seat. The county was named for Cornelis Jacobsen Mey a Dutch explorer, captain and fur trader.[2]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Cape May County Courthouse
9 North Main Street
Cape May Court House, NJ 08210
Phone: 609-402-0100
Cape May County Website

County Clerk has military records 1795-1878, land records from 1692, Court Records 1793-1948, Military are cords from 1919 and naturalization records 1900-1960.
County Surrogate has probate records from 1783. [3]

Cape May County, New Jersey Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[4]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1901 1795 1901 1793 1692 1783 1830
*Statewide registration for births and deaths started 1 May 1848. General compliance by 1920.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

  • Parent County(s): Created from Burlington County, on 1685.[5]
  • County Seat: Cape May Court House[6]

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit HomeTown Locator. The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county:[7]

Cities
Boroughs
Unincorporated communities
Census-designated places
Townships


History Timeline[edit | edit source]

  • 1685, court set up
  • 1692, county given boundaries in West Jersey
  • 1694, boundaries changed to transfer Great Egg Harbor area to Gloucester County
  • 1710, boundary changed
  • 1822, boundary with Cumberland County clarified
  • 1844, part of Cumberland County added
  • 1845, the 1844 part of Cumberland County returned
  • 1846, coastal boundary established
  • 1878, part of Maurice River twp., Cumberland County, added to Upper twp.
  • 1891, part of Maurice River twp., Cumberland County, added to Dennis twp.
  • 1906, coastal boundary established.

Resources[edit | edit source]

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Biographies[edit | edit source]

Business, Commerce, and Occupations[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries of Cape May County, New Jersey online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See New Jersey Cemeteries for more information.

Census Records[edit | edit source]

For tips on accessing census records online, see: New Jersey Census.

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1790 2,571
1800 3,066 19.3%
1810 3,632 18.5%
1820 4,265 17.4%
1830 4,936 15.7%
1840 5,324 7.9%
1850 6,433 20.8%
1860 7,130 10.8%
1870 8,349 17.1%
1880 9,765 17.0%
1890 11,268 15.4%
1900 13,201 17.2%
1910 19,745 49.6%
1920 19,460 −1.4%
1930 29,486 51.5%
1940 28,919 −1.9%
1950 37,131 28.4%
1960 48,555 30.8%
1970 59,554 22.7%
1980 82,266 38.1%
1990 95,089 15.6%
2000 102,326 7.6%
2010 97,265 −4.9%
Source: "Wikipedia.org".

Church Records[edit | edit source]

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.

Contains the church records of:
  • Ocean View: Calvary Baptist Church

List of Churches and Church Parishes

Court Records[edit | edit source]

Directories[edit | edit source]

Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups[edit | edit source]

Funeral Homes[edit | edit source]

Genealogies[edit | edit source]

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a specific 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.

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Your relatives may be included in biographies, in church, school and government history, or in military events and lists. For more information, see New Jersey History and scroll to Local Histories.

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Atlantic CountyCumberland CountyNJ CAPE MAY.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources


Migration[edit | edit source]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Online Naturalization Indexes and Records

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

From 1797 or the creation of the county, probate records were held by the Court of Common Pleas and may have earlier records. In 1852, most of those records were transferred to the Cape May County Probate Court. For more complete information and for online and other resources, see New Jersey Probate Records.

Online Probate Indexes and Records

School Records[edit | edit source]

Social Security Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

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[edit | edit source]

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.

Birth[edit | edit source]

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Death[edit | edit source]

Divorce[edit | edit source]

Research Facilities[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]

Family History Centers[edit | edit source]

Family History Center and Affiliate Library Locator map - search for local Family History Centers or Affiliate Libraries

  • Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance, free access to center-only databases, and to premium genealogical websites.
  • FamilySearch Affiliate Libraries have access to most center-only databases, but may not always have full services normally provided by a family history center.

Local Centers and Affiliate Libraries

Libraries[edit | edit source]

Museums[edit | edit source]

Societies[edit | edit source]

The Museum of Cape May Historical Museum and Genealogical Society
504 Route 9 North
Cape May Court House, NJ 08210
Phone: 609-465-3535 Genealogy, Ext.5
E-mail:cmchgs@gmail.com
Website

Greater Cape May Historic Society
653 Washington Street
Cape May, NJ 08204
Phone: 609-884-9100
Website

Websites[edit | edit source]

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Newberry
  2. Wikipedia contributors, "Cape May County, New Jersey" in Wikipedia : the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cape May_County,_New_Jersey accessed 29 August 2018.
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Cape May County, New Jersey page 464, At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Cape May County, New Jersey . Page 464-465 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002; Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Third ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 2004), 460.
  5. Newberry
  6. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002).At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  7. Wikipedia contributors, "Cape May County, New Jersey," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cape May_County, New Jersey#Communities accessed 8 March 2020.