Wayne County, Pennsylvania Genealogy

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United StatesGotoarrow.png Pennsylvania Gotoarrow.png Wayne County

Wayne County, Pennsylvania
Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Wayne County
Location in the state of Pennsylvania
Map of the U.S. highlighting Pennsylvania
Location of Pennsylvania in the U.S.
Founded March 21, 1798
County Seat Honesdale
Wayne County, Pennsylvania Courthouse.jpg
Address Wayne County Courthouse
925 Court Street
Honesdale, PA 18431
Wayne County Website
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Historical Facts

Beginning dates for major county records

Anthony Wayne.JPG

The county is named after Revolutionary War General "Mad" Anthony Wayne (1745-1796).[3]

Boundary Changes

26 March 1814: Pike County set off. [1]


Bible Records


Cemetery records often reveal birth, marriage, death, relationship, military, and religious information.

Online Grave Transcripts Published Grave Transcripts County Cemetery Directories

Family History Library



Names in Stone
USGenWeb Billion Graves
Pennsylvania Genealogy Epodunk
Pennsylvania Gravestones
Billion Graves
Names in Stone
Access Genealogy

See Pennsylvania Cemeteries for more information.

Hollisterville Cemetery, Salem BillionGraves


For tips on accessing Wayne County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Federal (or United States) census records online, see: Pennsylvania Census.

There are no county or state census records available for Pennsylvania. County and city tax records can be used as a substitute when census records are not available.

Church Records

Church records and the information they provide vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. They may contain information about members of the congregation, such as age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information and maiden names; and death date. In Pennsylvania, church records are often used as a substitute for birth, marriage, and death information. For general information about Pennsylvania denominations, view the Pennsylvania Church Records wiki page.

Wayne county pennsylvania churches.png

In 1870 it was reported that there were sixty-two houses of worship in Wayne County and in 1966 there were sixty nine.

Additional church records can be located at Linkpendium and by searching the Family History Library Catalog. The FHLC has a plethora ofchurch recordsfor Wayne County, many are limited in the time frame they cover. When searching the FHL catalog, be sure to also search at the town and township level.

Finding Church Records at Other Repositories

Additional church records can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Wayne County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Church Records  in online catalogs like:

USGenWeb. Wayne County PA, Churches gives name, contact information, Website and other information.


They arrived in the area in 1795. Eventually there were two groups, the Free Communion Baptist Church at Mount Pleasant and the Honesdale Baptist Church.[4]


Irish Catholic lived in Mount Pleasant, Preston, Buckingham, Carbondale, Honsdale, Ledgedale, and White Mills townships. Many people were Delaware and Hudson Canal Co. employees. The German Catholic Church was organized 1853 .[4]


Honesdale Grace Episcopal Church and Dyberry Parish in Bethany were both established in1832. St. John's Protestant Episcopal Church in Hamlin was established in 1844. [4]


The Temple Beth Israel synagogue was established 1849 from land donated by Delaware and Hudson Canal Co. The Sherith-Israel Synagogue. Russian and Polish Jews 1880's established the Sherith-Isreal synagogue. [4]


Honesdale German Evangelical Luthern Congregation was established in 1845. [4]


The first group organized in 1825, by 1900 the Methodist outnumbered the other denominations. Members could attend in Salem Corners, Pleasant Mount, and Honesdale. [4]


There were five churches organized between 1829 and 1849.[4]

  • 1829 Hensdale (Dyberry Forks)
  • 1835 Waymart
  • 1842 Prompton
  • 1842–1900 Prompton Sessions Records Available from the Wayne County Historical Society, Research Library. You may view it at the library for free if a member or for a $5.00 charge. You may hire a professional from their web page.
  • 1848 Lebonon
  • 1849 Hawley

Russian Orthodox

Russians settled in South Canaan and had a monastery and school. [4]

Court Records

Court of Common Pleas
Clerk of the Court
Orphan's Court (see Vital Records)

Emigration and Immigration

Many early residence came from New England, New York, and New Jersey. (Ref. History of Wayne County Pennsylvania 1798-1998 by Walter B. Barbe and Kurk A. Reed. Wayne County Historical Society C 1998.)

Ethnic Groups





Published Histories

Land and Property

Land records in Wayne County began in 1798. These records are filed with the Recorder of Deeds in Honesdale, Pennsylvania. Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts, indexes, mortgages, leases, grants, sheriff sales, land patents, and maps. Property records include liens as well as livestock brands and estray records. The following are examples of available resources:

Land Records on Microfilm 1795-1941 Deeds, 1796 to 1866; Indexes, 1795 to 1941 FHL film 354579 (first of 28)

1798–1941 Mortgages, 1798-1834; Index, 1798-1941 FHL films 954305–954309

Additional Resources

Note that the "Maps" section below includes maps related to land ownership. fckLRfckLRPennsylvania Land and Property for more information about using land records, especially about original land warrants, surveys, and patents filed at the state land office.

Additional resources can sometimes be found using search phrases such as fckLRWayne County Pennsylvania Land in online catalogs such as: *Historical Society of Pennsylvania*WorldCat (For instructions see WorldCat Online Catalog.)*Family History Library Catalog (For instructions see FHL Catalog Place-name Search.)


Ancestor Tracks has a CD of the First Landowners of PA: Warrantees of Wayne & Pike Counties, Map Index by Jason Torrey, 1814 ($).  The CD contains first landowner names and tracts, the warrant register index for Northampton County (the source for both Pike and Wayne Counties), and the warrant registers for both counties. fckLR



Naturalization and Citizenship




Indentured Servants


Poorhouse, Almshouse

Probate Records



Wayne County Courthouse
925 Court Street
Honesdale PA 18431
Phone: 570-253-5970
Hours: 8:30 AM–4:30 PM

  • Prothonotary
  • Office: Second Floor Annex
  • Phone: 570-523-5970 ext. 4030
This office function is to file and maintain records. Most of the records are available to the public. For genealogical research they have:
  • 1893–1906 Birth and Death records
  • 1885–Present Marriage records
  • 1880 County Tax Assessment Census
  • 1912–1971 School records
  • Some Naturalization records
Family History Centers

Family History Centers (FHCs) are branches of the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah, and are located all over the world. Their goal is to provide resources for family history research.

The main FHC for Wayne County, Pennsylvania Genealogy is the Scranton Pennsylvania Family History Center. For additional nearby Family History Centers, search online in the FHC directory.



  • 1798 - Pennsylvania, U.S. Direct Tax Lists, 1798 at Ancestry ($).

Vital Records

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. While the records for that time period are available, there were few events recorded. County marriage records were kept in earnest in 1885. Births and deaths, at the county level, were begun in 1893 and kept through 1905. Abstracts and copies of vital records are available for some counties, but most are incomplete. For the most complete set of records, always contact the County Orphans' Court.

In Wayne county, the Prothonotary's office has vital records for genealogical researchers. Visit the webpage for further information: fckLRfckLRProthonotary<br>Wayne County Court House<br>Second Floor Annex<br>925 Court Street<br>Honesdale, PA 18431<br>Phone: 570-253-5970 Ext. 4030<br>Hours: 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM 

Early births 1893–1905 are located at the County Orphans' Court. See the heading Court Records on this page for contact information.

Indexes for Pennsylvania birth records are available through the Department of of Health for 1906 and 1907. Once an individual is located in the index a non certified Birth certificate can be obtained by writing and sending $3.00 to:

Division of Vital Records
ATTN: Public Records
P.O. Box 1528
New Castle, PA 16103


Pennsylvania marriages are located at the county level. Contact the Wayne County, Pennsylvania Genealogy clerk's office for these records.

  • 1841–1976Pennsylvania, Marriages, 1709–1940 – free index. Not complete for all years.In Wayne county, the Prothonotary's office has: fckLR*1885–present - Marriage records (see above for address)

Divorce records are handled by the office of the Prothonotary. While no on-line indexes or records are available, records may be obtained by visiting or writing to the Prothonotary at: Wayne County Court House& Second Floor Annex Court Street Honesdale, PA 18431fckLRPhone: 570-253-5970 Ext. 4030 Hours: 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM


Early deaths 1893–1905 are located at the County Orphans' Court. See the heading Court Records on this page for contact information.

Indexes for Pennsylvania death records are available through the Department of Health for 1906 through 1962. Once an individual is located in the index a non certified death certificate can be obtained obtained by writing and sending $3.00 to:

Division of Vital Records
ATTN: Public Records
P.O. Box 1528
New Castle, PA 16103

  • 1852-1854 – Pennsylvania Deaths Ancestry.com – $ Index with images.fckLR Wayne county, the Prothonotary's office has:
  • 1893–1906 Death records (see above for address)

Web Sites


Populated Places


  1. 1.0 1.1 Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), [FHL book 973 D27e 2002]. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "HBG" defined multiple times with different content
  2. Wikipedia contributors, "Adams County, Pennsylvania" in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adams_County,_Pennsylvania (accessed 17 July 2012).
  3. "Anthony Wayne," Wikipedia.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 Walter B. Barbe and Kurk A. Reed. History of Wayne County Pennsylfania 1798-1998. (Wayne County Historical Society, 1998).FHL book 974.823 H2bw