Sullivan County, New Hampshire Genealogy

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Guide to Sullivan County, New Hampshire ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, military records, and other records..

Sullivan County, New Hampshire
Map of New Hampshire highlighting Sullivan County
Location in the state of New Hampshire, United States Genealogy
Founded July 5, 1827
County Seat Newport
Address Sullivan County Courthouse
22 Main St
PO Box 45
Newport, NH 03773-0045
Phone: 603.863.3450
Sullivan County Website

John Sullivan

Sullivan County, New Hampshire Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Known Beginning Dates for Major Records[1]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1827 1827 1827 1827 1827 1827 1790
*Statewide registration for births and deaths started 1866. General compliance by 1901.

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

The Town or City Clerks have birth, marriage, death and burial records.
The Clerk of the Superior Court has divorce and court records from 1827.
The Register of Probate has probate records.
The Register of Deeds has land records.
The Richards Library, in Newport, New Hampshire has other records of genealogical interest.[2]

Towns Organized Before 1800:
Acworth 1766
Charlestown 1753
Claremont 1764
Cornish 1763
Croydon 1763
Goshen 1791
Grantham 1761
Langdon 1787
Lempster 1761
Newport 1761
Plainfield 1761
Springfield 1794
Unity 1764
Washington 1776
Wendell 1731

History[edit | edit source]

Sullivan County is named for Brigadier General John Sullivan, a Revolutionary War hero and former governor.

Parent County[edit | edit source]

Sullivan County was established by law on 5 July 1827 from Cheshire County. Cheshire County was established in 1771. [3]

Description[edit | edit source]

Sullivan County is located in the southwest region of the state. The county was named for John Sullivan. an Irish-American General in the Revolutionary War, a delegate in the Continental Congress, Governor of New Hampshire and a United States federal judge.

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

1771-1827: The area that now is Sullivan County was part of Cheshire County from 1771 to 5 July 1827. Thus if you are looking for an ancestor in censuses, deeds, probate records, etc. before 5 July 1827, look in Cheshire County records.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

1827 Early deeds were damaged by fire. A separate series of “burned deeds,” consisting of copies of surviving portions of the burned volumes with a separate index, is at the registry.

For suggestions about research in places that suffered historic record losses, see:

Places/Localities[edit | edit source]

New HampshireVermontSullivan CountyGrafton CountyMerrimack CountyHillsborough CountyCheshire CountyWindham CountyWindsor CountyPlainfieldGranthamSpringfieldCornishCroydonSunapeeNewportClaremontCharlestownUnityGoshenWashingtonLempsterAcworthLangdonWalpoleAlsteadMarlowStoddardAntrimDeeringWindsorHillsboroughHennikerBradfordWarnerNewburySuttonNew LondonWilmotDanburyGraftonAlexandriaOrangeGrotonDorchesterCanaanEnfieldLabanonHanoverWestminsterRockinghamSpringfieldWeathersfieldWindsorWest WindsorHartlandWoodstockHartfordPomfretNorwich
Modern town borders in Sullivan County, New Hampshire.

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]

Unincorporated communities
Census-designated places

Resources[edit | edit source]

Biography[edit | edit source]

There are books or films with biographies, genealogies, and vital records for the towns and cities of Sullivan County. The Family History Library has books or films with genealogical sections for: Acworth, Claremont, Charlestown, Cornish, Goshen, Langdon, Lempster, Newport, Plainfield, Unity, and Washington. Please see the FamilySearch Catalog for the town, and look under the headings Genealogy and History.

For Grantham and Sunapee for which the Family History Library does not have a genealogical book, the Library has films with very good vital records (birth, marriage, and death records) . For Croydon, there is a Centennial Celebration history book published in 1867 with some information on leading figures in the community to 1866.

A very good place to contact for biographies and family histories in Sullivan County is the Newport Historical Society, 20 Central St., P. O. Box 413, Newport, NH 03773, tel. 603-863-1294, e-mail, They have a good number of local histories, and a good amount of family history information.

Another good place to contact for biographical information is the Historical Society of Cheshire County, in Keene, New Hampshire. They have town histories, family histories, biographical manuscripts, photographs, city directories, newspapers, business records, and other biographical information. The New Hampshire Historical Society in Concord, New Hampshire is a good source for similar materials.

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Tombstone Transcriptions Online Tombstone Transcriptions in Print List of Cemeteries in the county Family History Library
NHGenWeb Archives WorldCat Billion Graves
Tombstone Project FamilySearch Places
Billion Graves
See New Hampshire Cemeteries for more information.

Census[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1830 19,669
1840 20,340 3.4%
1850 19,375 −4.7%
1860 19,041 −1.7%
1870 18,058 −5.2%
1880 18,161 0.6%
1890 17,304 −4.7%
1900 18,009 4.1%
1910 19,337 7.4%
1920 20,922 8.2%
1930 24,286 16.1%
1940 25,442 4.8%
1950 26,441 3.9%
1960 28,067 6.1%
1970 30,949 10.3%
1980 36,063 16.5%
1990 38,592 7.0%
2000 40,458 4.8%
2010 43,742 8.1%
Source: "".

The 1890 census, except for the list of Civil War veterans or their widows, was destroyed by a fire in Washington, D. C. in 1921. One help for 1890 is the Town and City Atlas of the State of New Hampshire, published in 1892 in Boston by the D. H. Hurd Company. The atlas has maps for almost every city, town, and village in New Hampshire. The maps show the locations of homes, and the map gives the name of the person living in the home. The above web site is from the University of New Hampshire Library. Not all of the website map images have legible home owner names.

Note: the 1890 census veterans' schedules for New Hampshire were preserved. They are available at United States Census of Union Veterans and Widows of the Civil War, 1890 at - How to Use this Collection, and, also on microfilms from the Family History Library. You can search for veterans' names or their widows' names.

Church[edit | edit source]

If you know the church where your ancestor attended, or know which denomination the ancestor belonged to, the Newport Historical Society may be able to help you locate the church and its records. (See the address under Biography above.) You can also see the Church Records section in the general information for New Hampshire. That section lists archives and other record keepers for the various religious denominations.

If you do not know the denomination, search for a marriage record. This may give the name of the minister. Then you can contact a historical society and learn at which church he was the minister. Also search for an obituary, which may mention the church the person attended. The death certificate may list the name of the cemetery. You can then write to the cemetery and ask if it is affiliated with a local church. The death certificate may mention the funeral home. Their file may have the name of the church, cemetery, or a copy of the obituary. Also, relatives might know the denomination.

Different churches contain a variety of types of records. Many churches keep baptism, marriage, and burial records. Sometimes birth and death information is included. The church records of brothers and sisters, etc. may give clues.

List of Churches and Church Parishes

Court[edit | edit source]

From 1827: The Sullivan County courthouse is located at 24 Main St., Newport, NH 03773. They have some court records from 1827 when the county was organized, to the present, however many of the court records from 1827-1919 have been sent to the New Hampshire State Archives and Records Management. The records can be studied there.

1827-1905: The Family History Library has microfilms of Sullivan County court records from 1827 to 1905. See theLibrary Catalog for the various court records and their microfilm numbers. There is an index at the beginning of each volume.

The Sullivan County Superior Court office is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. through 4:00 p.m., and is closed for 12;30 - 1:00 p.m. The phone number is 603-863-3450. The Circuit District Court handles cases also. Contact the Superior Court office for assistance with the Distict Court records.

Before 1827: For the court records before 1827, please go to the wiki article on Cheshire County, New Hampshire.

On 1 July 2011, the New Hampshire legislature merged the District Court, Probate Court and Family Division Court into one Circuit Court system to improve the court system and to improve services. Jurisdictions for the Circuit Court are the same as their prior jurisdictions. There are now ten (10) circuit courts, one for each of the states counties. Some of the largest counties have more than one circuit court clerk assigned to manage divisions in more than one city or town. The locations of the district, family, and probate divisions are listed by county and/or town at: New Hampshire Judicial Branch.

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Cheshire CountyHillsborough CountyMerrimack CountyGrafton CountyWindsor CountyWindham CountyNH SULLIVAN.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Genealogy - How to get started?[edit | edit source]

1. Check (Family Tree) and see if your ancestor's name is listed there.

2. Check's historical records and see if your family's vital records of births, marriages, and deaths are there.

3. Check and see if your family is listed on the U. S. census records of 1850-1940. You can also see those censuses at the Family History Center using Heritage Quest, and

4. If you know the town where they lived, seek a town history that has a genealogical section (see below).

5. Read through the wiki articles on Sullivan County, and on New Hampshire, for ideas of sources. Study the Records Selection Table in the New Hampshire article. This can help you think of new sources to try.

6. Share your search on (Family Tree),, or You can also share your quest with the local historical society or town library and ask for help. Send them your family group forms and a pedigree chart.

Genealogy - Town Histories with Genealogy Sections[edit | edit source]

For Sullivan County there are many excellent town histories. Many have a genealogical section.  The Family History Library has history books or films with genealogical sections for: Acworth, Claremont, Charlestown, Cornish, Goshen, Langdon, Lempster, Newport, Plainfield, Unity, and Washington. In the Family History Library Catalog, go to the town, then look for the heading Genealogy or History. Many of the books are on microfilm or available online.

Many other historical societies and libraries will very likely also have these books.

Historical Societies - (see Societies section below)[edit | edit source]

Land[edit | edit source]

1827 on: The Sullivan County deed records begin in 1827 when the county was established from Cheshire County. Deed records are available at the county courthouse in Newport, New Hampshire. A note in Redbook: American State, County, and Town Sources, 3rd edition, 2004, page 436 states that "Early deeds were damaged by fire. A separate series of "burned deeds," consisting of copies of surviving portions of the burned volumes with a separate index, is at the registry."

1827-1900: To search Sullivan County land records for 1827-1900 you can go to the internet site Sullivan County Registry of Deeds. For detailed instructions go to Newport Historical Society. Look for the instructions on searching the deeds.

1827-1850: The Family History Library has microfilms of the grantor, and, grantee indexes for 1827-1850 and films of the deed volumes for 1827-1850. See the Library Catalog for the film numbers.

The Newport Historical Society has maps and books that can help you study land records, and locations of homes, farms, etc. (For their address see the Biography section above.)

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Early - 1885: The Family History Library of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has many local history books about Sullivan County and the towns in the county. Several of the books can be read online through For example, the History of Cheshire and Sullivan Counties, New Hampshire, by D. Hamilton Hurd, published in 1886 (FHL book 974.2 H2h, film 962,933). This has histories of each town from early settlement to about 1885. You can search for names or keywords. There is also a separate index on the internet.

1766-1878: The book History of the Town of Cornish, New Hampshire is available online, and The History of Newport, New Hampshire, from 1766 to 1878, with a Genealogical Register can be seen online.

The Newport Historical Society and other town historical societies are good places to contact for local history for Sullivan County. See the Internet site of the New Hampshire History Network for contact information for historical societies.

The New Hampshire State Library in Concord, New Hampshire has a vast collection of books about New Hampshire towns and counties. Check their internet catalog for a town of interest.

The New Hampshire Historical Society also in Concord has a very large collection of local history books and other publications.

Maps[edit | edit source]

NH Sullivan County

Your local public library or college library may have maps or atlases to help you. For very detailed maps, or old maps, contact the town historical societies or libraries. A list of town historical societies may be seen on the Internet site of the New Hampshire History Network.

1890: An interesting help for 1890 is the Town and City Atlas of the State of New Hampshire, published in 1892 in Boston by the D. H. Hurd Company. The atlas has maps for almost every city, town, and village in New Hampshire. The maps show the locations of homes, and the map gives the name of the person living in the home. The above web site is from the University of New Hampshire Library.

Military[edit | edit source]

Revolutionary War[edit | edit source]

Potter, Chandler Eastman, The Military History of the State of New Hampshire. Concord, N.H.: McFarland and Jenks, 1866. (Family History Library film 1033664; fiche 6046858.) You can search this book online by going to Look for as the internet way to search this book. This history comprises events from the first settlements in New Hampshire to the rebellion in 1861. It includes biographical notices of many of the officers and explanatory notes.

Fortunately the History of Cheshire and Sullivan Counties, New Hampshire is available online through This was written by D. Hamilton Hurd, and published in 1886 (FHL book 974.2 H2h, film 962,933). There is a history of each town with names of soldiers who served from that town in the Revolutionary War. There is also background information about activities surrounding the war.

The most complete listing of New Hampshire Revolutionary War soldiers is found in volumes 14-17 of the New Hampshire State Papers. You can go to, and look forNew Hampshire State Papers with the link to There you will find a name index to voloumes 14-17, then you can go to the needed volume and page for information on the soldier. Often the place of residence is given.

Online Records

War of 1812[edit | edit source]

Hurd's History of Cheshire and Sullivan Counties, New Hampshire, mentioned above, is available online, and lists soldiers in the various towns who served in the War of 1812. Find the history of the town where the soldier lived and look in the military history section.

Civil War[edit | edit source]

Online Records

Regiments. Civil War service men from Sullivan County served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are many companies or regiments that were formed from men of Sullivan County.

- 1st Regiment, New Hampshire Infantry, Companies D and K.
- 1st Regiment, New Hampshire Cavalry, Troops A, F, G, I, and L.
- 1st Regiment, New Hampshire Heavy Artillery, Companies A, B, and H.
- 2nd Regiment, New Hampshire Infantry, Companies H and I.
- 3rd Regiment, New Hampshire Infantry, Companies A and F.
- 5th Regiment, New Hampshire Infantry, Companies E and G.
- 6th Regiment, New Hampshire Infantry, Companies F and G.
- 9th Regiment, New Hampshire Infantry, Company D.
- 11th Regiment, New Hampshire Infantry, Company F.
- 14th Regiment, New Hampshire Infantry, Companies B and I.
- 15th Regiment, New Hampshire Infantry, Company F.
- 16th Regiment, New Hampshire Infantry, Companies A, F, and I.
- New Hampshire Sharpshooters, 1st Company E.

Additional Resources for soldiers from Sullivan County:

FamilySearch is a free source for locating names of Civil War soldiers and sailors. is available free at FamilySearch Centers and is also valuable for finding names of soldiers and sailors. has Civil War draft registration records, soldier's records, and an index to Civil War pension applications.

Again, Hurd's book mentioned under the heading Revolutionary War and War of 1812 is very helpful. This book is available online. There is a history of each town. In the military section you will generally find the names of those who fought in the Civil War, with information about the various regiments.

History books about the various towns often give the names of soldiers and other helpful information. See the Library Catalog at for Sullivan County towns and the topic History. For example, if your ancestor served in the Civil War from Claremont, Sullivan County, there is a book which you can read online:

[FamilySearch Digital Library.

World War I[edit | edit source]

1917-1918: A very helpful source for World War I is an index at of World War I draft registration records, 1917-1918. All men between ages eighteen and forty-five were required to register. Their birth date and often the town or city of birth, address, and sometimes the name of nearest kin, are listed on the card. Many of these men served in the war.

World War II[edit | edit source]

1942: There is an index on of the 1942 World War II draft registrations for New Hampshire, of men forty-five to sixty-five. Some of these men served in that war. The records contain name, address, birth date and place, name of kin or friend, name and address of employer, and signature. (See for further information.)

1938-1946: At you can also search the index, and information given in, the U.S. World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946. The information includes name, birth year, state or country of birth, city or county of residence, enlistment date and city, occupation, marital status, and education.

Naturalization[edit | edit source]

1827-1906: Many of the Sullivan County naturalization records for 1827-1906 have been transferred to the New Hampshire State Archives. See this link for a list of what is at the State Archives. Naturalization records since 1906 may very well be at the courthouse.

1838-1903: Naturalization index, 1838 to approxamatley 1903.

1838-1903: Naturalization records of the various courts, 1838-1903.

Online Records

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

The oldest newspaper for the Sullivan County region is the Keene Sentinel, published since 1799. The offices are at 60 West St., Keene, NH 03431, tel. 603-352-1234, e-mail The web site is See the Newspaper section for Cheshire County in the wiki for information on indexes to the Keene Sentinel.

Over the years various newspapers have been published in Sullivan County, for example for the Newport region, the New Hampshire Argus, 1834-1835. The name has changed many times, and today there is the Argus Champion. For the Claremont region there is the Claremont Eagle Times, and the Claremont Courier.

To learn more about early newspapers published in Sullivan County cities and towns, see the United States portion of the wiki, under the heading Newspapers. For example see Winifred Gregory's book American Newspapers, 1821-1936, published in 1937, reprinted in 1967 (FHL Ref Q book 970 B33a 1967, film 483713).

Finding More New Hampshire Newspapers[edit source]

Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Sullivan County, New Hampshire Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:

Probate[edit | edit source]

Probate records for Sullivan County began in 1827 when the county was created from Cheshire County. See the address for the courthouse in the County Courthouse section above.

The Family History Library has films of Sullivan County probate records. The follow records can be viewed at the library:

1827-1864: probate index for wills 1827-1864

1856-1914, 1858-1922, to 1947: probate index for wills 1856-1914, and admistrations abt. 1858 to 1922, some other records to 1947.

1827-1864, 1827-1855, 1827-1902: records of wills 1827-1864, administrations 1827-1855, and other records 1827-1902.

1856-1914, 1858-1922, to1947: records of wills 1856-1914, administrations, ca. 1858-1922, and other records to 1947.

Pre-1827: For information on the pre-1827 probate records please go to the Cheshire County, New Hampshire wiki - Probate section.

Online Probate Records

Taxation[edit | edit source]

Many town tax records have been preserved by town clerks and town tax officials. Town tax records were generally taken each year. The Family History Library has many town records on microfilms. For film numbers see the FamilySearch Catalog under New Hampshire - Sullivan County - [name of town] - Town Records.

Early-1850: There is an index to the town records (which include many tax records) from the early settlement of the town to about 1850. This is the Index to Early Town Records of New Hampshire, Early to 1850 (FHL films 14942-15052). The index cards list volume and page numbers for the town records, many of which are on Family History Library microfilms. The records are listed in the catalog in the manner mentioned in the paragraph above.

To see the types of family history information you might find in town records please go to the heading Town Records in our New Hampshire wiki article. has online images of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax lists for New Hampshire and many other states for 1862-1866. Only persons who owned businesses, or valuable items such as carriages, were listed. You may wish to check to see if your ancestor was listed. The record gives the person's name, town of residence, business or valuable item, and amount of tax.

Town Records[edit | edit source]

Early-1850: Town records are an important source of family history information from the 1600s to about the 1940s. The early New Hampshire town records to about 1850 have an every-name index, Index to Early Town Records, New Hampshire, Early to 1850. (For more information see the Taxation section just above.) The index and film numbers are listed just above in the Taxation section. Many town records are still in the town offices.

To see the types of family history information you might find in town records please go to the heading Town Records in our New Hampshire wiki article.

Online Records

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Fortunately, most of the New Hampshire birth records to 1900, and marriage and death records to 1947, are on the internet at where you can view a digital image of the actual record. (See the births, marriages, and deaths headings below.)

Certified copies of of birth, death, and marriage records are available from the State Division of Archives and Records management or from the local city and town clerk where the event took place. Original records are kept by the city or town clerk and copies are sent to the state. The Family History Library has films of Sullivan County town and city birth records to about 1900, and marriage, and death records often to the 1940s. These are listed in the Library Catalog under New Hampshire, Sullivan County, (name of town or city) - Vital Records.

In 1905, when the state created the Bureau of Vital Records and Health, printed cards were distributed to the local clerks and earlier vital records were transcribed onto the cards and submitted to the state.

Online Records

Births[edit | edit source]
Marriages[edit | edit source]
Deaths[edit | edit source]

Societies and Libraries[edit | edit source]

Towns: An excellent way to gain information is to contact the local town historical society. The best list of these is found at the New Hampshire History Network. At that site, click on the Directory, and scroll down to the town of interest.

Historical Societies[edit | edit source]

There are historical societies in the following towns in Sullivan County: Acworth, Claremont, Charlestown, Cornish, Croydon, Goshen, Grantham, Lempster, Newport, Plainfield, Springfield, Sunapee, Unity, and Washington. For addresses, Internet sites, etc. see the New Hanmpshire History Network. Although Langdon does not have an historical society, it does have an historical commission. Contact

Richards Free Library

58 N. Main St.

Newport, NH 03773


The Historical Society of Cheshire County in Keene, New Hampshire has a large genealogical collection relating to Cheshire County. Their collection might help you if your family was an early family in Sullivan County.

The New Hampshire Society of Genealogists publishes a magazine regularly. They also publish books containing records. You may want to view their Internet site.

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

Websites[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Sullivan County, New Hampshire. Page 452-453. 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), 436.
  2. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Sullivan, New Hampshire page 453, At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. name="HBG">Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), 181. [FHL book 973 D27e 2002].
  4. Wikipedia contributors, "Sullivan County, New Hampshire," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_New_Hampshire, accessed 20 November 2018.