Duplin County, North Carolina Genealogy

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United States  Gotoarrow.png  North Carolina  Gotoarrow.png  Duplin County

County Courthouse

Duplin County Courthouse
118 Duplin Street
Kenansville, NC 28349
Phone: 910-296-2108

Register of Deeds has birth and death records 1913
marriage records from 1749
maps & land records from 1749
and  business records from 1899
Clerk Superior Court has probate and court records[1]


Duplin County was created in 1750 from the northern part of New Hanover County and is named for Thomas Hay, Viscount Dupplin, later 9th Earl of Kinnoull. The earliest immigrants were Welsh, who arrived in the 1700′s, and soon followed by German Palatines and the Swiss in the 1730′s and 1740′s. The Scotch-Irish arrived in 1736 with Henry McCulloch, a wealthy London merchant, to settle on a rich and fertile 71,160-acre land granted to him from the British Crown. The French Huguenots and English, who migrated from Virginia along with Scottish Highlanders who came from the upper Cape Fear region, also were among the earliest settlers to the area along with African-Americans. The early settlements were primarily along the river and larger creeks as these were the best means of transportation. Henry McCulloch established several settlements. One on the east bank of the Northeast Cape Fear River named Sarecta, became Duplin’s first incorporated town in 1787. Another settlement was established on the west side of the river on Goshen Swamp, and a third at a place referred to as Golden Grove, later to become the Town of Kenansville. (Source: Duplin County History).

Parent County

1749--Duplin County was created 17 March 1749 from New Hanover County.
County seat: Kenansville [2]

Boundary Changes

Record Loss

Many court records are missing.


Populated Places

Neighboring Counties


African American

The first U.S. Federal census enumerating freed slaves was taken in 1870. Their records have been published:



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Church of England

St. Gabriel's Parish served Duplin County.

Surviving records include Warden's Records of the Poor (1799-1817), which are kept at the <a href="North Carolina State Archives">North Carolina State Archives</a>. Microfilm copy: <img class="FCK__MWTemplate" src="https://www.familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/extensions/FCKeditor/fckeditor/editor/images/spacer.gif" width="1" height="1" _fckfakelement="true" _fckrealelement="116" _fck_mw_template="true">.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

LDS Ward and Branch Records

  • Albertson



It is anticipated that this bibliography will eventually identify all known family histories published about residents of this county. Use this list to:

  • Locate publications about direct ancestors
  • Find the most updated accounts of an ancestor's family
  • Identify publications, to quote <a href="Elizabeth Shown Mills">Elizabeth Shown Mills</a>, about an ancestor's "FAN Club" [Friends, Associates, and Neighbors]


The <a href="http://www.duplincountync.com/rod/genealogical.html">Duplin County Register of Deeds Office</a> has a complete record of all property conveyances dating back to 1750 when the county was founded. All of the indexes to Duplin County property records from 1784 thru the present are available for searching both at the Register of Deeds Office and also remotely via their internet website: <a href="http://rod.duplincounty.org/">rod.duplincounty.org</a>. Additionally, all of the property records books have been scanned and are available for viewing and downloading with the exception of books 20, 22, 33, 43, 106, 249, 276, and 318. These books are however available at the Register of Deeds Office.

A number of land records have been transcribed and are available at the following sites:

Local Histories



Civil War

Civil War Confederate units - Brief history, counties where recruited, etc.

-3rd Regiment, North Carolina Infantry


  • Duplin County newspapers - a listing of newspapers published in the county & libraries that hold them; via the Library of Congress. If you find a paper of interest on microfilm, you may be able to request it via Interlibrary Loan with your local public library.
  • Duplin County residents in the newspaper - name listing of people from the county as located in misc. newspaper articles; time span varies. Articles indexed in the NC People in the Papers database from the NCGenWeb project.
  • North Carolina Newspaper Digitization Project - contains full-text papers from 1752-1890s. Search for your Duplin County ancestors to see if they were mentioned.


The Duplin County Clerk Office is located in the city of Kenansville. The North Carolina Constitution mandates that there be a Clerk of Superior Court for each county. The clerk is elected for a period of 4 years. The responsibilities of the Clerk are numerous and varied. As the judge of probate the Duplin County Clerk handles probate of wills and the administration of estates of decedents, minors and incompetents.

Duplin County Clerk
112 Duplin St.,
Kenansville, NC 28349
Phone: (910) 275-7000

A number of Wills and Estate Records have been transcribed and are available at the following sites:


Vital Records

You may search Duplin County public birth, death, marriage and property records in the <a href="http://www.duplincountync.com/rod/genealogical.html">Office of the Register of Deeds</a> free of charge. No appointment is necessary. The office is located in Room# 106 of the Duplin County Courthouse Annex at 118 Duplin Street; Kenansville, North Carolina 28349.

  • Duplin County Births, 1913 - present -- search all birth records online at the Duplin County Register of Deeds website; includes more than 2,000 delayed birth certficates
  • North Carolina Births and Christenings, 1866-1964 - search this name index to birth, baptism and christening records from the state; via FamilySearch.
  • Duplin County Marriages, 1867 - present - search all Duplin County marriage records on the Register of Deeds website.
  • African-American cohabitation records - search at the Register of Deeds website
  • Duplin County Marriages - misc. marriages added to the NCGenWeb Archives
  • Duplin County marriages - may be included throughout 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 website.

Societies and Libraries 

  • Duplin County Historical Society
    Historical Society/Commission
    L. H. Sikes
    PO Box 220
    Rose Hill, NC 28458-0220

Family History Centers

Web Sites


  1. &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;i&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/i&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Duplin County, North Carolina. Page 508 &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;img class="FCK__MWTemplate" src="https://www.familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/extensions/FCKeditor/fckeditor/editor/images/spacer.gif" width="1" height="1" _fckfakelement="true" _fckrealelement="128" _fck_mw_template="true"&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;; &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;img class="FCK__MWTemplate" src="https://www.familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/extensions/FCKeditor/fckeditor/editor/images/spacer.gif" width="1" height="1" _fckfakelement="true" _fckrealelement="126" _fck_mw_template="true"&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;.
  2. &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;i&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/i&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).