Sussex County, Delaware Genealogy

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

County Facts
County seat: Georgetown
Organized: August 8, 1673
Parent County(s): Deale
Neighboring Counties
Caroline (MD)  • Dorchester (MD)  • Kent  • Wicomico (MD)  • Worcester (MD)
See County Maps
Courthouse
Delaware, Sussex County Courthouse.png
Location Map
De-sussex.png
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County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The County is located in the south area of the state.[1]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Sussex County Courthouse
1 The Circle
Georgetown, DE 19947
Phone: 302-855-7055
Sussex County Courthouse

The Recorder of deeds has land records from 1693.
Register of Wills houses the probate records. [2]

Sussex County, Delaware 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 Records[3]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1861 1847 1861 1680 1693 1683 1782
*Statewide registration was 1861-1863, then reinacted in 1881. General compliance by 1921.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

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

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

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:[4]

Cities
Towns
Unincorporated communities
Census-designated places


History Timeline[edit | edit source]

1683 The border between Sussex and Kent Counties, Delaware was set in 1683 and has not changed since then.
1710 Because of the ongoing boundary disputes between Lord Baltimore of Maryland and William Penn of Pennsylvania, much of Sussex County (excepting a few miles inland from the coast) was also recognized as part of Maryland's Somerset County up through 1760.Both Pennsylvania (and, after 1710, Delaware) and Maryland issued land patents for the area, sometimes in conflict with each other.
1760 The British Crown ordered the dispute to be settled in 1760, and commissioned Charles Mason and Jermiah Dixon to survey the boundary. In 1769, the survey was completed, defining the border between Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania that exists today.

Resources[edit | edit source]

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Wiltbank Family Bible, published in Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. 29, p.339, available online at Family Search.

Biographies[edit | edit source]

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

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

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

Census Records[edit | edit source]

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

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1790 20,488
1800 19,358 −5.5%
1810 27,750 43.4%
1820 24,057 −13.3%
1830 27,115 12.7%
1840 25,093 −7.5%
1850 25,936 3.4%
1860 29,615 14.2%
1870 31,696 7.0%
1880 36,018 13.6%
1890 38,647 7.3%
1900 42,276 9.4%
1910 46,413 9.8%
1920 43,741 −5.8%
1930 45,507 4.0%
1940 52,502 15.4%
1950 61,336 16.8%
1960 73,195 19.3%
1970 80,356 9.8%
1980 98,004 22.0%
1990 113,229 15.5%
2000 156,638 38.3%
2010 197,145 25.9%
Source: "Wikipedia.org".

Church Records[edit | edit source]

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]

African American

Delaware: Enslaved and Free Persons, and Slaveholders is a database of enslaved and free African-Americans extracted from Sussex County, Delaware will books from 1836-1851, with ongoing updates. Slaveholders occasionally provided surnames or exact birthdates in their wills.

Funeral Homes[edit | edit source]

Genealogies[edit | edit source]

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

KentCaroline County, MarylandDorchester County, MarylandWicomico County, MarylandWorcester County, MarylandDE SUSSEX.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources



Migration[edit | edit source]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Civil War

World War I

World War II

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]

Online Probate Indexes and Records

  • 1680 -1800 Sussex County, Delaware Probate Records, online at Ancestry ($)
  • DeValinger, Leon. A Calendar of Sussex County, Delaware Probate Records, 1680-1800 . Dover, Delaware: Public Archives Commission, 1964.
  • Moore, Marguerite R. indexes for Sussex 1800-1869, three volumes(Westminster, Md.: Family Line Publications, 1995-97.)

School Records[edit | edit source]

Social Security Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

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]

Listed below are archives in Sussex County. For state-wide facilities, see Delaware Archives and Libraries.

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 Sussex County. For state-wide library facilities, see Delaware Archives and Libraries.

  • Laurel Public Library
    101 E 4th St
    Laurel, DE 19956
    302 875-3184
    Website
    Facebook

Museums[edit | edit source]

Societies[edit | edit source]

Listed below are societies in Sussex County. For state-wide genealogical and historical societies, see Delaware Societies.

  • Georgetown Historical Society
    510 S. Bedford Street
    Georgetown, DE 19947
    302 855-9660
    Email: marvelmuseum@gmail.com
    Facebook
  • Lewes Historical Society
    110 Shipcarpenter St.
    Lewes, DE
    302-645-7670
    Website
  • Lower Delmarva Genealogical Society
    (Kent and Sussex County)
    Box 3602
    Salisbury, Maryland 21802-3602
    E-Mail: info@ldgs.org
    Website
  • Sussex County Genealogical Society
    c/o Rehoboth Beach Public Library
    226 Rehoboth Avenue
    Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971
    Email: info@scgsdelaware.org
    Website

Websites[edit | edit source]

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Wikipedia contributors, "Sussex County," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sussex_County,_Delaware 04/27/2017.
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Sussex, Delaware Page 121 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Sussex County, Delaware. Page 121 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), 118.
  4. Wikipedia contributors, "Sussex County," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sussex_County,_Delaware, accessed 25 October 2018.