Lawrence County, Pennsylvania Genealogy

From FamilySearch Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Guide to Lawrence County, Pennsylvania ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

County Facts
County seat: New Castle
Organized: March 20, 1849
Parent County(s): Beaver, Mercer[1]
Neighboring Counties
Mercer  • Butler  • Columbiana (OH)  • Mahoning (OH)  • Beaver
See County Maps
Lawrence County, Pennsylvania Courthouse.jpg
Location Map
Lawrence County PA Map.png
Adopt-a-wiki page
Pa-rootsbuttonwiki.gif This page adopted by:
PA Roots and its members
who welcome you to contribute.
Adopt a page today

County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The county was named for USS Lawrence. It is located in the midwestern area of the state.[2]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Lawrence County Courthouse
430 Court Street
New Castle, PA 16101-3503
Prothonotary, Clerk of Courts, Clerk of Orphan's Court: 724-656-2126
Register of Wills and Recorder of Deeds: 724-656-2131
Lawrence County Website

County Clerk has birth, death, and burial records 1893-1905, marriage records from 1893, divorce and court records from 1855
Register and Recorder has probate and land records[3]

Lawrence County, Pennsylvania Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Information for this chart was taken from various sources, often containing conflicting dates. This information should be taken as a guide and should be verified by contacting the county and/or the state government agency.

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[4]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1893 1893 1893 1855 1849 1849 1790
*Statewide registration for births and deaths began in 1906. General compliance by 1915.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

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

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

For animated maps illustrating Pennsylvania county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Pennsylvania County Boundary Maps" (1673-1878) may be viewed for free at the website.

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]

Unincorporated communities
Census-designated places
Historic communities
  • Big Beaver Borough

History Timeline[edit | edit source]

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 Lawrence County, Pennsylvania online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See Pennsylvania Cemeteries for more information


  • Cemetery records often reveal birth, marriage, death, relationship, military, and religious information.

Additional Cemetery Resources

Census Records[edit | edit source]

Federal Census

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1850 21,079
1860 22,999 9.1%
1870 27,298 18.7%
1880 33,312 22.0%
1890 37,517 12.6%
1900 57,042 52.0%
1910 70,032 22.8%
1920 85,545 22.2%
1930 97,258 13.7%
1940 96,877 −0.4%
1950 105,120 8.5%
1960 112,965 7.5%
1970 107,374 −4.9%
1980 107,150 −0.2%
1990 96,246 −10.2%
2000 94,639 −1.7%
2010 91,108 −3.7%
Source: "".

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Church records and the information they provide vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. For members, they may contain: age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage date and maiden name; death/burial date. For general information about Pennsylvania denominations, see Pennsylvania Church Records.

County-wide Database – Multi-denominational

Lawrence County Pennsylvania Churches

Lists of founding members of the early church congregations in Lawrence County are listed in History of Lawrence County. Church histories are located under the township histories. WorldCat 5123388 FHL book 974.893 H2he [8]


Baptist congregations in New Castle were first established in 1843. By 1877 there were 5 congregations in New Castle.

Catholic priests visited Lawrence County until St. Mary's was erected in New Castle in 1852.

The first Episcopalian services were held in New Castle in 1843.

The first Lutheran church was established in New Castle in 1848. Other congregations organized in New Castle, including a Swedish Lutheran Zion church.

Congregations were established in New Castle (1836) Mahoningtown (1850).

Methodist Episcopal
The first Methodist Episcopal church was built in 1816 in New Castle. This congregation had been meeting since 1804. Other congregations were established in Wilmington, Wampum, Pulaski, Mahoning, Eon, Hickory, Mount Jackson, Clinton, and other communities.

The Moravians established a mission in Lawrence County in 1755, but moved to Tuscarawas Valley, Ohio, by 1773.

Earliest congregations were formed in Hopewell and Nashannock (1800), followed by New Castle (also called Lower Neshannock) and Westfield (1803). Other congregations included Pulaski, Mahoningtown, Darlington, Little Beaver, Enon, Newport Village, and Westfield, among others in the county. United Presbyterian (Seceder or Associate Reformed)
An early congregation was formed in Deer Creek (1800), Mahoning (1800) and New Castle (1808). Other congregations were established in Wampum, Beacon Valley, New Wilmington, and Hickory.

List of Churches and Church Parishes

Court Records[edit | edit source]

For information about records kept in the Orphan's court, Prothonotary Court, Court of Common Pleas, and other courts in counties of Pennsylvania, visit the Pennsylvania Court Records Wiki page.

Directories[edit | edit source]

Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

For online resources, passenger lists, and specific groups coming to Pennsylvania, see Pennsylvania Emigration and Immigration.

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

For groups that came, see People section of the Pennsylvania Emigration page.

Funeral Homes[edit | edit source]

Genealogies[edit | edit source]

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

The Orphan's Court ensures the best interests of those not capable of handling their own affairs: minors, incapacitated persons, decedents' estates, and more.[9]

Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a specific location and reveal family relationships. Records include: deeds, abstracts, indexes, mortgages, leases, grants, sheriff sales, land patents, maps and more. For more information, see Pennsylvania Land and Property.

Land records in Lawrence County began in 1849. These records are filed with the Register of Wills and Recorder of Deeds office in New Castle, Pennsylvania.

Online Land Indexes and Records

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Mercer CountyVenango CountyButler CountyBeaver County,Trumbull CountyMahoning CountyColumbiana CountyPA LAWRENCE.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources


Migration[edit | edit source]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Civil War

World War II

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Naturalization records can contain information about immigration and nativity. Prior to 1906, it is rare to find the town of origin in naturalization records. For more information, see Pennsylvania Naturalization

Naturalization records for Lawrence County, Pennsylvania include the following: Online Naturalization Indexes and Records

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Newspapers may contain obituaries, births, marriages, deaths, anniversaries, family gatherings, family travel, achievements, business notices, engagement information, and probate court proceedings. Newspapers are often found in local or university libraries, historical or genealogical societies, or state archives in the area where the newspaper was published. See Pennsylvania Newspapers for more information.

Newspapers of Lawrence County

Online Newspapers

Online Newspaper Extracts

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Obituaries are generally found in local newspapers where the person died or where family members lived. Local libraries or societies may have indexes or other sources.

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Probate matters in Lawrence County are handled by the Orphans' Court and start when the county was created.

In addition to wills and administrations, the Orphans' Court also handles: audits of accounts of executors, administrators, trustees, and guardians; distribution of estates; appointments of guardians; adoptions; appeals from the Register of Wills; inheritance tax appeals, and various petitions and motions.

Online Probate Indexes and Records

School Records[edit | edit source]

Social Security Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Vital records are handled by the County Orphans' Court. Between the years 1852-1855 Pennsylvania made a failed attempt to record birth, marriage and death events at the county level. County marriage records were kept in earnest in 1885. Births and deaths, at the county level, were begun in 1893 and kept through 1905. For the most complete set of records, contact the County Orphans' Court.

Birth[edit | edit source]

Early births 1893–1905 are located at the County Orphans' Court. For more information, see Pennsylvania Vital Records.

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Pennsylvania marriages were created by county officials. Contact Lawrence County Courthouse

Death[edit | edit source]

Early deaths 1893–1905 are located at the County Orphans' Court. For indexes and records, 1906 and later, see Pennsylvania Vital Records.

Divorce[edit | edit source]

Divorce records are available through the office of the Prothonotary Lawrence County Courthouse.

Research Facilities[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]

Listed below are archives in Lawrence County. For state-wide archival repositories, see Pennsylvania Archives and Libraries.

National Archives at Philadelphia
14700 Townsend Road
Philadelphia, PA 19154-1096
Phone: 215-305-2044
Fax: 215-305-2052

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]

Listed below are libraries in Lawrence County. For state-wide library facilities, see Pennsylvania Archives and Libraries.

New Castle Public Library Genealogy/History Room
207 East North Street
New Castle, PA 16101
Phone: 724-658-6659, ext. 112
Collection includes local family histories, Pennsylvania county history books, census, newspapers and a local marriage and obituary database taken from the New Castle News.

Museums[edit | edit source]

Societies[edit | edit source]

Listed below are societies in Lawrence County. For state-wide genealogical societies, see Pennsylvania Societies.

Lawrence County Historical Society
408 North Jefferson Street
New Castle, PA 16101
Phone: 724-658-4022

Websites[edit | edit source]

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Pennsylvania.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2.,_Pennsylvania accessed 2/12/2017
  3. The Handybook for Genealogists : United States of America, 10th ed., (Draper, UT: Everton Publishers, 2002) Lawrence County, Pennsylvania, p.591
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Pennsylvania.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  5. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Pennsylvania.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  6. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Pennsylvania.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  7. Wikipedia contributors, "Lawrence County, Pennsylvania," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Pennsylvania#Municipalities, accessed 25 January 2020.
  8. S.W. and P.A. Durant, History of Lawrence County (Phildelphia: L.H. Everts and Co., 1877)
  9. The Philadelphia Courts at Common Pleas accessed 10 July 2012
  10. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at