Craven County, North Carolina Genealogy

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Guide to Craven County, North Carolina ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

County Facts
County seat: New Bern
Organized: December 3, 1705
Parent County(s): Bath[1]
Neighboring Counties
Beaufort  • Carteret  • Jones  • Lenoir  • Pamlico  • Pitt
See County Maps
Craven County Courthouse.jpg
Location Map
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County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

Craven County is located in the eastern portion of North Carolina and was named in honor of the Earl of Craven to whom King Charles II granted tracts of land in the New World called "Carolina".[2]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Craven County Courthouse
406 Craven Street
New Bern, NC 28560
Phone: 252-636-6617
Craven County Website

Register of Deeds has birth and death from 1914, marriage and land records from 1700.
Clerk Superior Court has divorce records from 1915.
City Clerk has burial records.[3]

Craven County, North Carolina 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
1914 1740 1914 1715 1700s 1737 1784
Statewide registration for births and deaths started in 1913. General compliance by 1920.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

1712 Records destroyed in Tuscarora War
For suggestions about research in places that suffered historic record losses, see:

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

  • 1705 Archdale County was created 3 December 1705 from Bath County and was renamed to Craven County in 1712.
  • County seat: New Bern[5]

1722 Carteret was formed from Craven in 1722, with several boundary changes through the 1880s.
1729 New Hanover was formed from Craven in 1729.
1746 Johnston was formed from Craven in 1746.
1757 Part of Beaufort was annexed to Craven in 1757 and 1801.
1764 Part of Craven was annexed to Dobbs County in 1764.
1778 Jones was formed from Craven in 1778.
1787 Parts of Craven were annexed to Pitt in 1787; Lenoir in 1798, 1804 and 1819; and Greene in 1801.
1872 Pamlico was formed from parts of Craven and Beaufort Counties in 1872, and part of Craven was annexed to Pamlico in 1875.[6]

For animated maps illustrating North Carolina county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation North Carolina County Boundary Maps" (1664-1965) 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
  • Adams Creek
  • Cherry Branch
  • Harlowe
Census-designated places

History Timeline[edit | edit source]

Craven County one of three counties (Albemarle and Clarendon being the others) set up in 1664 by the Lords Proprietors of Carolina. Its territory embraced what later became South Carolina. Craven County was established in 1705 as Archdale Precinct of Bath County, although there is evidence that an Archdale County existed as early as 1696. The name was changed to Craven County about 1712. Craven County included the Ashley River settlement known as Charles Town (Charleston, South Carolina).

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


Census Records[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1790 10,474
1800 10,245 −2.2%
1810 12,676 23.7%
1820 13,394 5.7%
1830 13,734 2.5%
1840 13,438 −2.2%
1850 14,709 9.5%
1860 16,268 10.6%
1870 20,516 26.1%
1880 19,729 −3.8%
1890 20,533 4.1%
1900 24,160 17.7%
1910 25,594 5.9%
1920 29,048 13.5%
1930 30,665 5.6%
1940 31,298 2.1%
1950 48,823 56.0%
1960 58,773 20.4%
1970 62,554 6.4%
1980 71,043 13.6%
1990 81,613 14.9%
2000 91,436 12.0%
2010 103,505 13.2%
Source: "".

Church Records[edit | edit source]


Church of England

  • Craven Parish, New Bern, N.C. Later called Christ Church Parish Established 1715.[11] Official Website.

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 Americans

  • Mobley, Joe A. James City, A Black Community in North Carolina, 1863-1900. Raleigh: North Carolina Dept. of Cultural Resources, Division of Archives and History, 1981. FHL 975.6192/J1 H2m

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]

Beaufort CountyPamlico CountyCarteret CountyJones CountyLenoir CountyPitt CountyNC CRAVEN.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Migration[edit | edit source]

Early migration routes to and from Craven County for European settlers included:[12]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Revolutionary War

Civil War

Regiments. Men in Craven County served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Craven County:

- 2nd Regiment, North Carolina Infantry
- 5th Regiment, North Carolina Infantry
- 1st Regiment, North Carolina Artillery 10th Regiment Volunteers-1st Artillery, Company B
- 1st Regiment, North Carolina Artillery 10th Regiment Volunteers-1st Artillery, Company I
- 2nd Regiment, North Carolina Infantry, Company F
- 2nd Regiment, North Carolina Infantry, Company I
- 2nd Regiment, North Carolina Infantry, Company K
- 3rd Regiment, North Carolina Artillery, 1st Company H
- 3rd Regiment, North Carolina Artillery, 1st Company K
- 41st Regiment Volunteers - 3rd Cavalry, Company E
- 5th Regiment, North Carolina Infantry, Company D
- 3rd Regiment, North Carolina Artillery, Company F

Civil War Battles
The following Civil War battles were fought in Craven County:

World War I

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

The first newspaper in North Carolina was published in New Bern, N.C., by James Davis in 1751. The North Carolina State Archives has microfilmed copies of many New Bern newspapers. A list of North Carolina Newspapers, including Craven County can be found at the North Carolina Newspaper Index page of the North Carolina Newspaper Project. Craven County newspapers begin on page 37 of the index.

  • 1799-1893 Craven County marriages are included in Carrie Broughton's 6-volume index of the Raleigh Register & State Gazette newspaper (1799-1893). Marriages are listed by year and PDF files are searchable. Available on the North Carolina Digital Collections
  • Craven County deaths. County area deaths reported in various newspapers; dates range from late 1700s to 1900s.

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Other Records[edit | edit source]

County Records

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Online Probate Records

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]

Family History Centers[edit | edit source]

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 Libraries

Libraries[edit | edit source]

Museums[edit | edit source]

Societies[edit | edit source]

  • Craven County Genealogical Society
    PO Box 1344
    New Bern, NC 28563-1344
  • New Bern Historical Society
  • Family History Society of Eastern North Carolina

Websites[edit | edit source]

  • Craven County NCGenWeb genealogy resources; part of the national USGenWeb Project.
  • FamilySearch Catalog – The FamilySearch catalog contains descriptions and access information for all genealogical materials (including books, online materials, microfilm, microfiche, and publications) in their collection.  Use Historical Records to search for specific individuals in genealogical records.

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), North Carolina.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), North Carolina.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Craven County, North Carolina. Page 506-514 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), 505-509.
  5. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), North Carolina.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  6. David L. Corbett, The Formation of the North Carolina Counties, 1663-1943 (Raleigh: State Dept. of Archives and History, 1950), 74-79.
  7. Wikipedia contributors, "Craven County, North Carolina," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,, accessed 12 February 2020.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Lemuel Burkitt and Jesse Read, A Concise History of the Kehukee Baptist Association: From Its Original Rise Down to 1808 (1808), Chapter 16. Digital version at
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 George Washington Paschal, History of North Carolina Baptists, 2 vols. (1930; reprint, Gallatin, Tenn.: Church History Research and Archives, 1990), 1:317, 490. FHL Book 975.6 K2p 1990.
  10. Morgan Edwards, Materials Towards a History of the Baptists in the Provinces of Maryland Virginia North Carolina South Carolina Georgia (1772), 148. Digitized by SCDL Collections.
  11. Lawrence Foushee London and Sarah McCulloh Lemmon, The Episcopal Church in North Carolina, 1701-1959 (Raleigh, N.C.: The Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina, 1987), 24. FHL Book 975.6 K2e; Robert J. Cain, ed., The Church of England in North Carolina: Documents, 1699-1741 (Raleigh, N.C.: Division of Archives and History, North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, 1999), 500. FHL Book 975.6 K2cr; "Christ Church," North Carolina Highway Historical Marker Program,, accessed 22 October 2012.
  12. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), North Carolina.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  13. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 8 August, 2012)
  14. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 9 August, 2012)
  15. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at