Montour County, Pennsylvania Genealogy

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

County Facts
County seat: Danville
Organized: May 3, 1850
Parent County(s): Columbia[1]
Neighboring Counties
Lycoming  • Northumberland  • Columbia
See County Maps
Montour County, Pennsylvania Courthouse.jpg
Location Map
Montour County PA Map.png
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County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The county was named for Andrew Montour. The county is located in the mid-central area of the state.[2]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Montour County Courthouse
29 Mill Street
Danville, PA 17821
Phone: 570-271-3010
Register of Wills/Recorder or Deeds/Orphan’s Court Phone: 570-271-3012
County Recorder Phone: 570-271-3012 or 570-271-3014
Prothonotary/Clerk of Courts Phone: 570-271-3010
Montour County Website

Prothonotary and Clerk Courts has birth and death records from 1893-1905, delayed birth registration from 1883-1905, marriage licenses from 1885, divorce and court records from 1850, and naturalization records from 1850-1904.[3]

Montour 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 1885 1893 1850 1850 1850 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
  • Exchange
  • Kaseville
  • Limestoneville
  • Ottawa
  • Ridgeville
Census-designated places

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 Montour 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 13,239
1860 13,053 −1.4%
1870 15,344 17.6%
1880 15,468 0.8%
1890 15,645 1.1%
1900 15,526 −0.8%
1910 14,868 −4.2%
1920 14,080 −5.3%
1930 14,517 3.1%
1940 15,466 6.5%
1950 16,001 3.5%
1960 16,730 4.6%
1970 16,508 −1.3%
1980 16,675 1.0%
1990 17,735 6.4%
2000 18,239 2.8%
2010 18,267 0.2%
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.

The Montour County Genealogical Society has various records for churches throughout the Montour County area. However, the society has not put the records on-line and to view the records one must go to the society. The society will do limited lookups in the records. See their website for details.

County-wide Database - Multi-denominational

Contains the church records of:
  • Bloomsburg: Trinity Reformed Church (United Church of Christ)
  • Danville: Beaver Library; Lutheran Church; Presbyterian Church; Reformed Church; Shiloh United Church of Christ
  • Hemlock: Hemlock Township Union Church
  • Mooresburg: Presbyterian Church


Montour County Pennsylvania Churches

In 1842, the First Baptist Church of Danville was organized. The Immanuel Baptist Church was created from members of the First Baptist Church in 1892, but the church was dissolved by the members in 1908.[8]

The first pastor was appointed for the Evangelical Church in 1867, although previous pastors did perform services before that time. This congregation was eventually called the Emanuel Evangelical Church and their first church building was dedicated in 1871.[8]

The first sign of the Lutheran denomination in Montour County was in 1820 with the creation of what is now known as the Pine Street Lutheran Church. Before then, they would go to the Lutheran Church in Mahoning Township, Northumberland County. In 1845, a church was built and the congregation was known as Evangelical Lutheran Church of Danville (now called St. John's Lutheran Church). But the congregation eventually outgrew the building and the Pine Street Lutheran Church was built in 1859.[8]

The Trinity Lutheran Church was created in 1859 from members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church (eventually called the Pine Street Lutheran Church) that did not agree with the location of the new church building agreed upon by the majority of the congregation.[8]

Methodist Episcopal
The St. Paul Methodist Episcopal Church was the second religious organization established in Danville in about 1791, although a permanent church building was not erected until 1839.[8]

The Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church was organized in 1868 from members of the St. Paul Methodist Episcopal Church who lived in the north side of town. [8]

The Mahoning Presbyterian Church, later changed to the Grove Presbyterian Church, was the first religious organization in Danville in about 1778.[9]

Protestant Episcopal
The Protestant Episcopal congregation (now known as Christ's Church) was officially established in 1829, sharing a church building with the Lutheran congregation. Difficulties with the Lutheran Congregation eventually lead to them leaving the church building in 1836 and was left exclusively to the Protestant Episcopal Church.[8]

The Shiloh Reformed Church in Danville was formally created in 1893, when it split from a larger congregation of the Reformed Church that began in 1856 and covered Danville, Catawissa, St. James (Mahoning) and Mausdale. [8]

Roman Catholic
St. Joseph's Roman Catholic Church began as a mission in 1847. It's first building was on the corner of Center and Ferry streets and later moved to its current lot in 1869.[8]

Because of the large influx of German Catholics by 1859, a congregation was created and called the St. Hubert's German Catholic Church. Previously, German Catholics attended St. Joseph's Catholic Church.[8]

The B'nai Zion Synagogue was built in 1871. Previously, the congregation met in their schoolhouse built in 1853.[8]

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.[10]

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 Montour County began in 1850. These records are filed with the Register and Recorder office in Danville, Pennsylvania.

Land Indexes and Records

  • 1850-1958 Deeds, 1850-1866; Deed Index, 1850-1958. FHL films 953720-953728 - images only; click on the camera icon to view images

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Northumberland CountyLycoming CountyColumbia CountyPA MONTOUR.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

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 Montour County

Online Newspapers

To learn if there are newspapers online for a specific town or city in Pennsylvania, see and search for the town or the name of a newspaper.

Online Newspaper Abstracts

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.

Online Obituary Abstracts

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Probate matters in Montour 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 Montour 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 Montour County Courthouse.

Research Facilities[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]

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

Thomas Beaver Free Library
205 Ferry Street
Danville, PA 17821
Phone: 570-275-4180

Museums[edit | edit source]

Montgomery House Museum
11 Bloom Street
Box 8
Danville, PA 17821
Phone: 570-275-8528
A small library contains local and county histories, industrial record books, business and law ledgers, military references, photographs, tax records, and maps.
Currently open by appointment.

Societies[edit | edit source]

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

Montour County Genealogical Society
205 Ferry Street
Danville, PA 17821
Phone: 570-275-6177

Montour County Historical Society
P.O. Box 8
1 Mill Street
Danville, PA 17821
Phone: 570-271-0830

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) Montgomery 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, "Montour County, Pennsylvania," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Pennsylvania, accessed 28 January 2020.
  8. 8.00 8.01 8.02 8.03 8.04 8.05 8.06 8.07 8.08 8.09 8.10 Historical and Biographical Annals of Columbia and Montour Counties, Pennsylvania (Chicago, IL: J.H. Beers and Co., 1915), 352, 355), FamilySearch Digital Library, Digital copy at Internet Archive; At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL book 974.83 H2b vol. 1.
  9. "History of Danville, Grove Presbyterian Church" in PA-Roots at (accessed August 7, 2012).
  10. The Philadelphia Courts at Common Pleas accessed 10 July 2012
  11. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at