PA State Archives Hours, Directions, & Fees Research Topics Finding Aids for Collections Land Records

 

 

 


Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission
Bureau of Archives and History
Pennsylvania State Archives


RG-47

Records of the COUNTY GOVERNMENTS

Series Descriptions


Dauphin County

Named for the Dauphin, the title of the eldest son of the French King who had aided the American colonies in their struggle with England, Dauphin County was erected on March 4, 1785 from part of Lancaster County, with the boundaries defined in Smith's Laws, volume 2, p. 284. Named for early settler and Indian trader John Harris, the county seat of Harrisburg was incorporated as a borough in 1791 and chartered as a city in 1860. One of the county's most notorious stories is of the merciless raid of the Paxton Boys of 1763 on defenseless Conestoga Indians. From the 1730s, Harris's Ferry was located on an important trade route and the construction of canal and rail lines during the 19th century promoted efficient movement of goods. The largest Norther military camp during the Civil War, Camp Curtin, was located in Dauphin County. Dauphin County is the site of the annual Pennsylvania Farm Show, which started in 1917. More recent notorious recognition was dubbed on the county in 1979 as a result of the nuclear meltdown of Three Mile Island. Various industries flourished and succumbed throughout the history of the county, but today farming is one of the area's top industries.


Almshouse and County Home

Administrative Files,
1937-1955.
(1 carton)

{#47.245} [Holdings]


Grouped chronologically by year and arranged thereunder alphabetically by topic.

Communications, reports, and financial statements filed with the Directors of the Poor. Included are accounting sheets cross-referenced with appropriation and warrant ledgers, facility reports and blueprints, internal County Institution District communications, and reports to other county, state, and federal agencies. Restricted where social security numbers are contained.

Almshouse Architectural Drawings,
1883, 1928, 1935, 1936.
(2 folders)

{#47.549} [Holdings]

Arranged randomly.

Drawings for the construction of the County Almshouse. The earliest drawings include floor plans, elevations, foundations, and stables. Room layouts detail utilization of spaces. Later drawings are blueprints and describe fire hydrants and water lines, emergency ligting systems, fire alarm locations and site of all buildings within the property grounds.

Bids and Specifications for Utilities Upgrades to Poor House,
1914, 1936.
(1 folder)

{#47.550} [Holdings]

Arranged randomly.

Specifications and contractor's bids for a new steam heating system in 1914 and relocation of electric service, erection of a transformer house, and emergency lighting and installation of fire alarms in 1936.

Bonds for Maintenance of Bastard Children,
1873-1948.
(1 Carton)

{series #47.247} [Holdings]

Grouped chronologically by year of court session, and thereunder arranged by month of bond submission.

Bonds for maintenance of children born out of wedlock filed with the Directors of the Poor. These legal forms provided a guarantee of payment to the county for the expense and charges for the care of illegitimate children. These children were not institutionalized by the county. The data provided is: the amount of the bond, identity of the mother and father, the conditions of the pregnancy and date of birth, and signature of the guarantor of the loan. Each bond was assigned a number by the Court of Quarter Session.

Comptroller's Reports,
1915-1924, 1926-1927, 1929, 1933-1939.
(20 volumes)

{#47.244} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by year of report.

Annual reports of county comptroller held by Directors of the Poor. Each report provides a detailed account of all receipts, expenditures, assets, and liabilities of the county. End of year totals and balances are included.

Correspondence,
1916-1924.
(1 carton)

{#47.246} [Holdings]

Grouped chronologically by year of correspondence and arranged thereunder alphabetically by surname of correspondent or aid applicant.

Letters with supporting documentation developed in the course of providing aid. Correspondence on behalf of aid applicants may contain out-door relief records which provide the following information: name, age, current residence, gender, marital status, literacy, nationality, place of birth, occupation, cause of destitution, and physical condition. Attached field reports may list goods and services provided and comments on the condition of the applicant. Other correspondence includes communications among aid agencies, office personnel, aid applicants, and vendors providing goods and services.

County Home Admission Records,
1920-1960.
(9 cartons and 1 box)

{#47.233} [Holdings]

Arranged alphabetically by surname of applicant.

Admission records for the county home filed with the Board of County Commissioners. Folders for individuals contain biographical information, physical condition, description of appearance, occupation, last place of residence, date of admission, cause for admission, and cause of death or discharge. Some folders contain correspondence related to the individual. The records from 1940-1960 are incomplete and are restricted. Separate are the Inactive Child Welfare folders for admissions prior to 1940.

Daily Reports of Inmates,
1920.
(1 volume)

{series #47.186} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of report.

Daily inventory reports of the number and distribution (sex, race, age) of inmates in the Dauphin County Almshouse. Information provided includes brief descriptions of the inmates (name, age, race, residence, date of admittance, occupation or trade, marital status, reason for admittance, next of kin, initials of the individual that admitted the patient, and date of discharge or death), a Dauphin County Almshouse daily time sheet for 1920, discharge/death roster of inmates from 1920, unclaimed bodies buried at the almshouse, and documentation of produce inventories from the farming operation.

Daily Reports,
1915-1939.
(2 index card boxes)

{47.191} [Holdings]

Arranged alphabetically by surname of patient.

Index cards for individuals that were cared for at state poorhouses, almshouses, boarding schools, or hospitals. The earlier cards simply give the patient's name and address. Later cards provide more information, such as the name institution and length of stay.

Directors of the Poor Minute Books,
1910-1937.
(4 volumes and 3 folders)

{#47.243} [Holdings]


Arranged chronologically by dates of meetings.

Record of decisions taken by Directors of the Poor. Matters discussed include specific cases, both as to eligibility and amount of aid provided. Some communications with supporting agencies are included. The financial status of the various parts of the program were reviewed as well.

Emergency Relief Records,
1931-1937.
(38 cartons)

{#47.239} [Holdings]


Arranged alphabetically by surname of applicant.

Emergency Relief Board records, correspondence, and applications filed with the Directors of the Poor. These individual file folders contain the reference for the applicant from the Harrisburg Social Service Exchange, the record of relief granted, and any correspondence between county agencies and the applicant. Application forms specify: date of birth and where born; occupation, wages, and work record; where residing, number of rooms, rent, lodgers, and condition of house; religion, citizenship, and health; make-up of household and relatives. One carton holds administrative and financial records of the Emergency Relief Board. These include allocations and expenditures, communications and correspondence, reports and meeting minutes, relief books and distribution centers, confidential and survey reports, name lists, shoe and commissary reports.

Financial Ledgers,
1912-1956.
(6 volumes)

{#47.241} [Holdings]


Arranged chronologically by date of transaction.

Ledgers containing expenditures and receipts of the Directors of the Poor. Five are expenditure ledgers covering the period 1916-1956. Account sub-headings are office expenses, relief, salaries, provisions, supplies, clothing, furnishings, light and heat, incidentals, hospitals, farm, and repairs. Payments are defined by date, amount, payee, and purpose. Each year closes with a balance sheet. One receipt ledger covers the period 1912-1932. Data includes amount received, goods and services provided, names of relief recipients, and year ending balance.

Journal of Boarders,
1916-1920.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.185} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Indexed internally, alphabetically by surname of boarder.

Record of payments made to the Dauphin County Almshouse and similar county institutions for housing and care of patients. The records are available on an individual patient basis, along with some collective accounts.

Poor House Order Book,
1833-1847.
(1 volume)

{#47.525} [Holdings]


Arranged chronologically by date of transaction.

Record of all financial transactions involved in the operation of the poor house. Income is received from such as proceeds of the farm, mill, sales of stone and lime, appropriations from the commissioners, costs of boarding out of county persons, and others. Payments are detailed by order number, to whom paid, and for what. Persons being supported are listed by name whether they reside in the house or are outside paupers. Vendors of supplies are named as well as the products they deliver. Laborers who work to support the operation are listed along with their payments. Formerly filed in MG-4.

Record Book of Children and County Home Patients,
1931-1936.
(2 index card boxes)

{series #47.190} [Holdings]

Arranged by date of entry.

Indexed internally, alphabetically by surname of patient.

Inventory of children who were abandoned, neglected, or otherwise left without anyone to care for and raise them. Each entry contains all or most of the following information: patient's name and date of admission; date of birth; race; place of residence when admitted; reason for admission; name of institution to which admitted; names of parents; name of entity that paid for the boarding and any additional remarks. A list of boarding costs for the term of the patient's stay is also provided.

Record Book of Children, Insane and Feeble-minded Boarders,
1917-1931.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.187} [Holdings]

Arranged by surname of the boarder.

Due to confidentality issues, access to these records is Restricted.

Inventory of all individuals in the county classified as "insane", "feeble-minded" or having any other mental condition that prevented them from caring for themselves. All entries give the condition of the patient, name of patient, and date of admission. Other types of information that may also be present are age, race, birth date, place of residence when admitted, name of institution to which admitted, names of parents, and name of the the entity that paid the boarding fee.The patient's boarding costs may also be listed, along with the date of the patient's death.

Record Book of Insane, Feeble-minded and Epileptics,
1931-1936.
(1 volume)

{series #47.188} [Holdings]

Indexed internally, alphabetically by surname of patient..

Note: Due to confidentality issues, access to these records is Restricted.

An inventory of all individuals in the county classified as "insane", "feeble-minded", "epileptic", or having any other mental condition that may have prevented them from caring for themselves. All entries give the individual's name and date of admission. They also provide all or some of the following information: age, race, birth date, physical condition, residence when admitted, institution admitted to, names of parents, and name of the institution that paid the boarding fee. The cost of the patient's boarding is also given, along with the date of the patient's death.

Record Book of Returns of Poor School Children,
1832-1841.
(1 volume)

{#47.526} [Holdings]

Grouped chronologically by year of return and grouped thereunder by name of political subdivision and thence arranged alphabetically by surname of children.

Record of children between the ages of 5 and 11 whose parents could not afford to pay for their education. Data contained therein includes the names of the children, their ages, and name of at least one parent. Some families have several children living with different persons. These are noted under remarks. Twins are so identified. Formerly filed in MG-4.

Register of Admissions and Discharges,
1873-1928.
(3 volumes)

{series #47.189} [Holdings]

Arranged alphabetically by surname of patient.

Inventory of persons admitted to and discharged from the Dauphin County Poorhouse. Information provided is patient's name and date of admission, name of person by whom admitted, place of birth, cause of destitution, place of residence before admission, patient's occupation, marital status, mental condition, length of time in the institution, date of discharge and any additional remarks that may reveal whether the patient died or escaped.

Relief Ledgers,
1916-1919, 1935-1937.
(2 volumes)

{#47.242} [Holdings]


Arranged chronologically by date of application.

Indexed internally by surname of applicant.

Record of applications for relief filed with the Directors of the Poor. Data provided is name and address of applicant, nature of infirmity along with physical and mental condition, siblings, spouse and relatives, race and religion, amount and cost of goods provided, name of provider, and date relief was given.

Warrant Registers,
1914-1955.
(14 volumes)

{#47.240} [Holdings]


Arranged chronologically by date of warrant.

Records of payment issued for relief services filed with the Directors of the Poor. These expenditures account for the maintenance and care of the indigent under the care of the county. Listings include warrant number and date of warrant, amount and purpose of payment, the services or goods provided, and who received payment.


Board of County Commissioners

Commissioner's Minute Book,
1822-1823.
(1 volume)

{series #47.177} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Minute book of the daily activities of the Board of County Commissioners. Information provided is date and time of each meeting, names of those present, a description of presentations made, resolutions presented, and other business conducted.

Tax Assessment Rolls,
1900-1960.
(85 cartons)

{series #47.34} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of assessment, thereunder by location (borough, township, ward, or district), and finally, the individual assessment records are listed alphabetically by surname of taxpayer.

Assessments and enumerations of property in Dauphin County. Information provided is name of the owner and location; number of seated and unseated lands; number of lots on the property and the acreage; names of the owners of adjoining property; valuation of the land; valuation of the buildings; description of the property; total taxable valuation; amount of tax paid; and any remarks regarding property transfers. Different reports that can be found for the classifications include triennial, female, freeholder, occupational assets, tenants, and numbered streets.

Tax Duplicate for Halifax Borough,
1879.
(1 volume)

{#47.528} [Holdings]

Arranged alphabetically by name of person assessed.

Record of tax assessments for eligible rate payers of Halifax Borough. Persons are categorized under freeholders or single men. Beside each name is the state and county tax and a notation if the tax has been paid. Formerly filed in MG-4.

Tax Records of Municipalities,
1785-1899.
(193 cartons, 3 flat boxes)

{series #47.35} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by the year of the record, thereunder my municipality, and then alphabetically by name of taxpayer..

Records of of taxes paid to the county of Dauphin. Each volume contains the records of a single township or borough. Taxpayer names are listed alphabetically, along with the amount of taxes paid.

Voter Registry List for Wayne Township,
1907.
(1 item)

{#47.529} [Holdings]

Arranged alphabetically by surname of voter.

Register of voters residing within the election district of Wayne Township. The list was compiled for use in the primary election of 1907. Though there are columns for additional information only the column for the name of the eligible voter is filled in. Formerly filed in MG-4.

Clerk of Courts

Arbitration Dockets,
1832-1843.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.36} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of filing.

Dockets summarizing arbitration proceedings. Each record gives the court term and case number, date when arbitrators were chosen, names of parties and arbitrators, date and place of meetings, reason for dispute, and disposition.

Argument List,
1931-1941.
(1 volume)

{#47.296} [Holdings]

Grouped chronologically by court term and session.

Volume of notes of Judge W.M. Hargest concerning cases heard in county court. Cases are listed with attorneys for both sides and dates of argument, motions, and appeals. Judicial assignments are listed as well as the docket in which case may be found.

Attorney's Receipt Books for Papers,
1850-1871, 1877-1888.
(5 volumes)

{series #47.37} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Indexed internally, alphabetically by surname of attorney.

Receipt book documenting papers removed from the prothonotary's office files by an attorney for a specific purpose. Information provided includes the name(s) of the parties, court term and case number, date attorney obtained custody of the papers, signature of attorney, and date papers were returned to the prothonotary.

Cash Book,
1929-1938.
(1 volume)

{series #47.38} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by the date of entry.

Inventory of the money brought in by the Court of Common Pleas through trial fees. Information provided is date of payment received, name of person from whom received, and amount collected.

Common Pleas Argument Lists,
1891-1901, 1909-1919.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.39} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by the date of case.

List of all the cases brought before the Court of Common Pleas for Dauphin County. Information provided is for each case includes case number and date, names of parties involved, description of the type of case and the charges brought, name of the presiding judge or judges over the case, and the verdict.

Common Pleas Plea Dockets,
1841-1863, 1874-1912.
(7 volumes)

{series #47.40} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by the date of entry.

Information provided in each docket includes the names of the parties involved in the case, court term number and date, the plea of the defendant, and the the signature of the defendant. Similar information is contained in the series Rule Dockets of the Court Common Pleas, 1851-1883, 1895-1903 {series #47.52}.

Common Pleas Process Returnable Books,
1797-1800.
(1 volume)

{series #47.41} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by the date of the case.

Record of proceedings brought before the Court of Common Pleas of Dauphin County. Information provided includes the case number, names of the parties involved, the decision rendered, the amount paid, the names of any witnesses, and occasionaly a descriptive interpretation of the case.

Common Pleas Trial Lists,
1841-1846, 1854-1861, 1887-1892.
(3 volumes)

{series #47.42} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by the date of the case.

List of trials brought before the Court of Common Pleas for Dauphin County. Information provided includes the case number, names of the litigants, date of the proceeding, names of attorneys, nature of charges filed, and the verdict rendered.

Common Pleas Watch Books,
1803-1807, 1858-1865.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.43} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by the date of the case.

Watch list of trials brought before the Court of Common Pleas for Dauphin County. Information provided includes the case number, names of litigants, date of the proceeding, names of attorneys, nature of charges, and the verdict rendered.

Cost Dockets,
1804-1829, 1913-1916.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.44} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by the date of entry.

Record of all expenditures, business, and financial transactions of the Dauphin County Prothonotary. Information provided includes source of revenue received, reasons for expenditures, costs, and a summary of all transactions.

Daily Cash Receipt Book,
1930-1932.
(1 volume)

{series #47.45} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of payment.

Either duplicate or original receipts of fees received for services rendered by the prothonotary, showing the date and number of receipt, name of payer and amount paid, type of service rendered, amounts due to the state and/or county, and signature of the prothonotary.

Justice of the Peace and Alderman's Dockets,
1797-1801, 1807-1821, 1836-1843, 1900-1931.
(5 volumes)

{series #47.46} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of the proceeding.

Record of the proceedings and cases brought forth before the justice of the peace and alderman, showing names of parties and witnesses, type of case, charges and claims made, judgement rendered and amount, fines and costs paid, and appeals to higher courts. The Hollingsworth docket was originally a part of Manuscript Group 447, Landis Valley Museum Collection. The earliest docket contains a list of marriages performed at the back of the volume and was originally filed in MG-4..

Minute Books of the Court of Common Pleas,
1822-1843, 1910-1917.

(7 volumes)

{series #47.47} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by the date of the case or session meeting.

Minutes documenting day to day activities of the Court of Common Pleas showing the court term and case number, names of parties, type of case, date of case, date and manner of disposition, and names of judges and court officers.

Miscellaneous Account Book,
1931.
(1 volume)

{series #47.48} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Various listings of account expenditures and financial transactions dealt with by the office of the Clerk of Courts and its employees.

Opinion Book,
1938-1940,
(1 volume)

{#47.295} [Holdings]


Arranged numerically by case number assigned.

Indexed internally alphabetically by defendant.

Volume of notes of Judge W.M. Hargest concerning cases heard in county court. Information contained is case title, term date and number, date of filing of opinion, and brief note of subject of case.

Petition for Road and Resolution for Sewer,
n.d., 1888.
(3 items)

{#47.527} [Holdings]

Arranged randomly.

Three loose items. One is a petition, undated, from inhabitants of Lykens, Mifflin, amd Lower Paxton to the judges of the Court of Common Pleas requesting a road from Panterstown to Millersburg. The other two documents are council resolutions to survey and assess the costs and feasibility of constructing sewers, one from Vernon to Swatara Streets on Fifteenth Street, the other from Thirteenth to Seventeenth Streets on Derry Street. Originally filed in MG-4.

Quarter Session and Oyer Terminer Papers,
1785-1903.
(64 cartons)

{series #47.49} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of case.

Record of cases brought before the Court of Oyer and Terminer, providing the names of the disputing parties, charges filed, court term number and date, name of witness(es), explanation of the case, the verdict with the penalty brought forth, and the signature of the judge.

Quarter Sessions Papers,
1789-1860.
(5 folders)

{series #47.195} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of case.

Record of cases brought before the Court of Quarter Sessions. The information provided includes the court term and date; case number; names of the parties, attorneys, judge, jurors; charges brought forth; plea and verdict; explanation of case and costs. Also, this includes lists of the prison discharges from 1789 to 1860.

Record Book of Insolvents,
1807-1847.
(1 volume)

{series #47.50} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically, and thereunder alphabetically by last name of the "insolvent".

Original certificates of insolvents or those unable to meet their debts. Each docket claim relates to a specific "insolvent" case and provides the individual's name, date the petition was presented and discharged, and an explanation of the case and why such action was taken.

Record Book of Peddler's Licenses Issued,
1786-1809, 1830-1855.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.51} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date license was issued.

Record of individuals who were granted peddler's licenses by the Dauphin County Court of Quarter Sessions (a peddler being one who traveled about selling various goods for a living) . The licenses show the name and residence of the peddler, the date of the license, mode of travel, fee paid, and date of transaction with the Auditor General.

Rule Dockets of the Court of Common Pleas,
1851-1883, 1895-1903.
(3 volumes)

{series #47.52} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Rule dockets containing information that is similar to that provided in the Common Pleas Plea Dockets, 1841-1863, 1874-1912 {series #47.40}. The information provided in each docket includes the names of the parties involved in the case, court term number and date, the official plea of the defendant, and the signature of the attorney's defendant.

Sentence Dockets,
1886-1929.
(6 volumes)

{series #47.53} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Documentation of criminal sentencings in the county. Each entry provides the convict's name, date of sentencing, charge or reason for sentencing, cost of the fine, length of sentence, and the session number.

Session Return Book,
1887-1888.
(1 volume)

{series #47.54} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by session date.

List of individuals tried and convicted by the court. Each listing includes the defendant's name, charges brought forward, and names of any sureties.

Session Dockets,
1898-1899, 1916-1922.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.55} [Holdings]

Indexed by surname of plaintiff.

Information provided about each case includes date, names of the disputing parties, charges filed, names of witnesses, and verdict and costs.

Session Minute Books of the Court of Oyer and Terminer and the Court of Quarter Session,
1834-1929.

(23 volumes)

{series #47.56} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Minute books containing daily proceedings of the Court of Oyer and the Court of Quarter Session. Information provided about each case includes case number, names of the litigants, the names presiding judge(s), date of entry, a brief description of the case, and the verdict.

Session Minute Books of the Court of Oyer and Terminer, Quarter Sessions and Common Pleas,
1809-1815.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.57} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Minute books of the Court of Oyer and Terminer that provide the daily proceedings of the court. Each volume provides lists of cases and proceedings brought before the courts. Some of the included information is the case number, names of the opposing parties, the name of the presiding judge(s), date, brief description of the case, and the verdict.

Unidentified Index,
circa 1838.
(1 volume)

{series #47.58} [Holdings]

Arranged by surname of plantiff.

Index of court cases from an unknown source.


Prothonotary

Accounts of the Olive Encampment No. 56, International Organization of Odd Fellows,
1863-1868.
(1 volume)

{series #47.59} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of the document.

Record books of bills and payments due to the Olive Encampment No. 56 by its members.

Ad-Sectum Indexes,
1792-1935.
(13 volumes)

{series #47.60} [Holdings]

Grouped alphabetically by surname, and thereunder arranged by date of case.

List of judgment creditors and assignees, providing such information as court term and case numbers, names of parties, date and amount of judgment, and whether satisfied.

Appearance Dockets,
1879-1887.
(10 volumes)

{series #47.61} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

A variety of papers and documents filed through the county Court of Common Pleas. Since these papers differ significantly in the type of information contained within, each paper or document has to be examined as a seperate and distinct entity. Some common points of information include the names of the parties and attorneys involved, type of case being filed, date, court term and case number,and offical seals and signatures of officers.

Appearance Dockets Papers,
1785-1903, 1932.
(164 cartons)

{#47.367} [Holdings]


Grouped chronologically by date of court term, and thereunder arranged numerically by case number.

A variety of papers and documents filed through the county Court of Common Pleas. Since these papers differ significantly in the type of information contained within, each paper or document has to be examined as a separate and distinct entity. Some common data provided by each include the names of the parties and attorneys involved, type of case being filed, date, court term, case number, and official seals and signatures of officers.

Applications of Veterans for Peddlers' Licenses, 
1867-1905.
(1 carton)

{series #47.62} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of application.

Applications for peddlers' licenses created via an act of April 8, 1867 that granted disabled soldiers the right to peddle by obtaining a license without charge. Each application provides the name of the applicant and residence; rank, company, and regiment; description of the disability; and date the license was granted. All applications are signed by the veteran, the prothonotary, and a physician or surgeon. The collection also contains a "List of Licenses Granted Under The Act" which contains the names of 320 disabled veterans given permission to peddle or hawk goods in the county.

Census Report,
1860.
(1 volume)

{series #47.63} [Holdings]

Arranged by township or borough.

Census returns for the boroughs of Dauphin, Rush Township, and Middle Paxton that were found in the office of the Prothonotary. These returns are very similar to the federal census in the type of information they contain.

Circuit Court Execution Docket,
1800-1834.
(1 volume)

{series #47.64} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of docket.

Information provided for each case includes the names of the parties involved and their attorneys; court term and case number; amount of debt or judgement given; date and type of writ issued; amounts of interest; fees and costs; satisfacation of the verdict; and signature of sheriff or other officer.

Commission Book,
1840-1862
(1 volume)

{series #47.65} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of commission.

Copies of commissions issued by the Governor to candidates elected in Dauphin County. The information included includes the name and residence of the newly elected officer, his/her length of term in office, the date of the commission, and the office appointed to. Each notice has a signature of the Recorder of Deeds verifying the swearing in of the officer.

Common Pleas Minute Books,
1836-1840, 1843-1848, 1853-1860, 1871-1904, 1917-1948.
(11 volumes)

{series #47.66} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Minute book of the proceedings of the Court of Common Pleas. In addition to meeting minutes, each book contains attendance sheets, resolutions adopted, court proceedings, speeches or presentations, and documentation of all other pertinent dealings of the court.

County Treasurer's Receipts for Clock Peddlers Licenses,
1830-1845.
(1 box)

{series #47.67} [Holdings]

Unarranged.

Original receipts filed with the prothonotary or the clerk of courts by persons who wished to peddle clocks. Each receipt gives the individual's name and location of residence, date of certificate, the amount of money the license cost, the length of time that it was valid for, and the signature of the officer that granted the license.

Delinquent Note Books,
1857-1858, 1865-1866.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.68} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of note.

Notes of individuals promising to pay back money which they owed to the Bank of Harrisburg. Each note provides the individual's name with their signature, amount owed, and a signature by a notary officer that accepted the oath.

Dentist Registers,
1883-1934.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.69} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date information was recorded.

The Dentist Registers contain recorded copies of dentists diplomas. Some of the relevant information in each document includes the dentist's name and address, date of graduation, name of institution and faculty member names, places and dates of practice in the state, and date recorded. Dentists lacking a diploma presented affidavits containing similar information, which are also contained in the volumes. For additional dental licenses, see RG-22 Record of Dental Licenses, 1923-1965 {series#22.95} and RG-26 Record of Dental Licenses, 1965-1973 {series#26.105}.

District Court Execution Docket,
1823-1828.
(1 volume)

{series #47.70} [Holdings]

Indexed by surnames of parties involved in the case.

Fragments of information regarding cases brought before the county district court. Information found includes the names of the disputing parties, the date and session of the case, amounts of money involved in the case, and various signatures, along with brief details of the case.

Divorce, Lunatic and Drunkard Indexes.
1880-1930.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.71} [Holdings]

Arranged alphabetically by surname of the person the record pertains to.

Note: Due to confidentality issues, access to these records is Restricted.

Index of people registered with the Prothonotary of Dauphin County as being a "drunkard", "lunatic", or having a "divorce proceeding". Each entry gives the person's name, court term and year, docket number, the classification of the case and individual being labelled as a "drunkard", "lunatic", or "divorce proceeding" candidate.

Dog Registers,
1879-1921.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.72} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of registration.

List of dogs registered with the county. Each entry contains all or most of the following information: the owner's name and address, the name of the dog, descriptive details of the dog (such as size, weight, age, hair color), the signature of the officer that registered the dog, and the date of registration.

Ejectment Index,
1856-1924.
(1 volume)

{series #47.73} [Holdings]

Arranged alphabetically by last name of the property owner.

Index to the Ejectment Dockets. This list provides the name of the individual involved, property location, title in dispute, volume and page where the docket can be found.

Equity Docket Papers,
1920-1925.
(1 carton and 1 box)

{#47.309} [Holdings]


Grouped numerically by case number and thereunder chronologically by date of filing.

Record of proceedings in Court of Equity for a few cases. Material includes filing of complaint, responses to filings, testimony, depositions, and other papers offered as evidence. These may include receipts and other business documents.

Equity Files,
1873-1922.
(17 cartons)

{#47.414} [Holdings]


Arranged numerically by case number.

Records of cases tried by the court acting as a court of equity. Such cases generally involve issues which cannot be resolved by statute law. Records may include complaints, transcripts of testimony, depositions, bonds for injunction, appointments and reports of masters, bonds, and appeals. Data will include names of parties, cause of complaint, and relief sought.

Execution Docket Defendant(Ad-Sectum) Indexes,
1787-1967.
(27 volumes)

{series #47.74} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date.

Indexed internally, alphabetically by surname.

Index to cases recorded in the Execution Dockets of the district court, showing names of parties involved, court term and case name, and volume and page of recording.

Execution Docket Plaintiff Indexes,
1886-1933.
(22 volumes)

{series #47.75} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date and indexed alphabetically by last name.

Index to plantiffs registered in the Execution Dockets of the county court, showing the name of the plantiff(s) involved in the case, court term and case number, and page of recording.

Execution Dockets,
1791-1906.
(24 volumes)

{series #47.76} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Documentation of the execution of writs. Each entry contains most, if not all, of the following information: the individual's name and the attorney's name, reason the execution is being issued, dates and types of writs issued, dates of stay and returns of writs, amounts for interest, fees, and costs, and signature of sheriff.

Fifth Census of the Inhabitants of the United States, 1830.
(1 volume)

{series #47.77} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of reprt.

Census returns that include a re-issue of census reports from 1790, 1800, 1810, and 1820 taken in the districts and territories of the United States. The census report from 1830 taken in the territories and districts of the United States is also included. Each distict, state, or territory is broken down into more localized settings, such as townships or boroughs.

Insurance Certificates,
1880-1887.
(1 folder)

{#47.411} [Holdings]


Arranged randomly.

Samples of certificates issued to applicants for membership in mutual aid societies. Eleven of the items are for such societies. They are The Guardian Mutual Aid Society, Steelton Mutual Relief Association, Prudential Mutual Aid Society of America, Southern Pennsylvania Mutual Relief Association of Hanover, York, Pennsylvania (2), State Capitol Mutual Relief Association of Pennsylvania (3), Adams Mutual Relief Association of Littlestown, Pennsylvania, and the Keystone Guarantee Mutual Relief Association of America for Unmarried Persons (3). There is one application to the Mutual Live Stock Insurance Company for a horse. Additionally, there is a letter patent for the formation of The Guardian Mutual Aid Society.

General Index to Bond Books,
1785-1837.
(1 volume)

{series #47.78} [Holdings]

Indexed numerically by bond number.

An index to personal bonds. Each entry provides the individual's name, bond number, and the book and page number where more information concerning the bond can be located.

Jury List Books,
1895-1933.
(3 volumes)

{series #47.79} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date, and thereunder alphabetically by juror's last name.

A list of jurors summoned by the court. The list provides the name of each juror, address and occupation, and the signature of the judge or other court officers. At the beginning of each list is an oath of court officers affirming that they have selected jurors of competent ability.

Liquor License Dockets,
1895-1924.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.80} [Holdings]

Grouped geographically by city, ward, or township, and thereunder arranged chronologically by date of entry.

A record of individuals from the county who applied for licenses to sell liquor as distillers, brewers, bottlers, wholesalers, tavern owners, or retailers. Most entries provide the name and occupation of the applicant, the license number, the attorney's name, and the decree(approved/refused).

List of Freeholders, Tenants, and Single Men,
undated.
(1 volume)

{series #47.81} [Holdings]

Arranged alphabetically by individual's last name and by location (ward, district, or township).

Listings of people who were deemed by the county to be "freeholders", "tenants", or "single men". Each entry gives the name and address of the party concerned, along with their classification. This record was probably kept for statistical purposes, census reports, and taxing purposes.

Locality Indexes,
[ca. 1901-1929, & undated].
(5 volumes)

{series #47.82} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of report.

Listings of local taxes or works projects for specific locations. Each listing provides an entry number, nature of lien, amount of money involved, satisfaction of the customer, exact location according to street front, width and depth of lot, and any remarks that may have been provided.

Maps,
1862-1898.
(1 folder)

{series #47.181} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of map.

Various maps and sketches, including Harrisburg newspaper clipping from October, 1862, dealing with the 14th Congressional District, a map of lands taken by the local families (McCormick, Sheesley, Lupton and Co., Darr) in the New Channel Paxton Creek area, the proposed draft of the borough of Highspire from April, 1868, and the January 1868 plan for the design of the 2nd Ward in the borough of Steelton.

Middletown Car and Manufacturing Company Assignee Account Record,
1874.
(1 volume)

{series #47.83} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by year.

Account records that provide a yearly and daily list of the general account information of Seymour Raymond and George W. Etter of the Middletown Car and Manufacturing Company. Other administrative and technical records relating to the Middletown Car and Manufacturing Company can be found in Manuscript Group 393, the Pullmand-Standard Car Manufacturing Company Records.

Midwife Registers,
1921-1924.
(1 volume)

{series #47.84} [Holdings]

Indexed by the surname of the midwife.

Certified registrations from the Bureau of Medical Education and Licensure granted to midwives. Each certificate provides the name and address of the midwife, date and number of certificate, and signature of midwife and prothonotary.

Midwife Registration Receipt Book,
1921-1924.
(1 volume)

{series #47.85} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of receipt.

Original receipts resulting from the registration of midwives registering their services with the county. Data provided includes the number of the receipt, along with the name of the midwife and the date filed. There was a one-dollar fee per midwife to file with the county, as per the Act of June 5, 1913. Each midwife was certified by the Bureau of Medical Evaluation and Licensure of the State of Pennsylvania. The certificate number, volume, and page number of the recipt is also shown, along with the signature of the prothonotary.

Optometrist Register,
1918-1967.
(1 volume)

{series #47.86} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Indexed internally, alphabetically by name of optometrist.

Documents filed with the legislature which include the name and address of the filing optometrist, date and place of birth, education, date of certification, and name of certifying institute.

Osteopath Register,
1909-1926.
(1 volume)

{series #47.87} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of registration.

Indexed internally, alphabetically by name of optometrist.

Documents filed with the legislature which include the name and address of the filing osteopath, date and place of birth, education, date of certification, and name of certifying institute.

Petitions for Peddlers' Licenses,
1796-1881.
(7 folders)

{series #47.88} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date license was issued.

Original petitions of individuals requesting for the right to peddle clocks in the county. Each license application follows a similar pattern in regards to the information being requested from the individual before the certificate is granted. As years passed the county required more detailed information before granting the request.

Petitions to Execute Deeds and Articles of Agreements,
1789-1831.
(4 folders)

{series #47.30} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of petition.

Original petitions to transfer lands from one individual or family to another, usually due to a claim in a last will and testament or an outright purchase of the property.

Physician Registers,
1881-1928.
(3 volumes)

{series #47.89} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of entry.

Indexed internally, alphabetically by name of physician.

Also known as Medical Registers, these volumes record physicians practicing within the county, showing the name and address, date and place of birth, education and medical institute attended by the physician.

Railroad and Canal Damage Claim Book,
1826-1833.
(1 volume)

{series #47.90} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of accident claim.

Inventory of claims brought forth by individuals or companies against railroad or canal companies for damage, injury, or loss. Each entry gives the case number and name of parties, along with a description of the incident. The decision rendered by the judge, along with the amount of money to be paid out is also shown.

Septennial Census Enumeration,
1856.
(1 volume)

{series #47.91} [Holdings]

Arranged alphabetically by surname.

Indexed internally by specific borough, district, or township.

A county census record taken every seven years for taxing purposes. Information provided includes individual's name and occupation; number of males and females in the household; number of people in the household classified as "slaves", "deaf/dumb", or "blind"; and whether they were male or female.

Soldiers' Burial Record Books,
1902-1933.
(7 volumes)

{series #47.92} [Holdings]

Indexed alphabetically by surname of the deceased veteran.

Official applications for the burial of deceased Civil War veterans from Pennsylvania. Each application provides the individual's name, rank, and regiment; date of discharge from service; occupation after the war; date of death and place of burial; headstone order request; burial account costs, including laying out the body, coffin, grave, and hearse charges; and various signatures, including that of the justice of the peace.

Stallion Register,
1894-1913.
(1 volume)

{series #47.93} [Holdings]

Indexed by last name of the owner of the stallion.

Lists of stallions for breeding purposes that were registered with the Department of Agriculture. Information provided includes the name and address of each owner, horse's name, and its license number.

Street Index,
undated.
(2 volumes)

{series #47.94} [Holdings]

Arranged alphabetically by street name.

An indexed inventory of streets located throughout the county. Each entry provides the street name, the book and page number, and the line number where more information can be found about it. This is an index to a set of books issued by the county that provides information on its streets and other various locations.

Subpoenas,
1794-1800
(1 folder)

{series #47.112} [Holdings]

Arranged chronologically by date of subpoena.

Original copies of subpoenas issued by the Dauphin County court system.

Tavern Licenses,
1785-1803,
(1 box)

{#47.294} [Holdings]


Arranged chronologically by year of petition.

Petitions for the license to sell alcoholic beverages. Petitions were submitted by innkeepers and other proprietors of public houses of entertainment to the court for their recommendation and forwarding to the Supreme Executive Council, and later the Governor. Information included name of petitioner, location of place of business, and signatures of persons supporting the petition. Also included in the files are lists of all petitioners. These lists note whether the petitioner has previously held a license, what township and place in which the business is located, and whether or not it was approved.

Veterinary Surgeon Register,
1889-1904.
(1 volume)

{series #47.95} [Holdings]

Arranged chronolgically by date of entry.

Registerations of individuals qualified to practice veterinary medicine, showing the name of each veterinarian, his address, place and date of birth, educational background, date of certification, and signature of the prothonotary and the veterinarian.


Recorder of Deeds

Entry Book,
1797-1809.
(1 volume)

{series #47.549} [Holdings]

Arranged chronolgically by date of entry.

Register of transactions completed in the office of the Recorder of Deeds. Data listed includes name of grantor, name of grantee, transaction, and amount of money charged. Majority of transactions are deeds for sale of land. Other items include mortgages, releases, letters of attorney, and release of dower. Originally filed in MG-4.




Tax Assessment Office

Enumeration of Taxables,
1800-1835.
(4 folders)

{series #47.180} [Holdings]

Grouped chronolgically by year, therunder by district, borough, or specific township, and then arranged alphabetically by surname of taxpayer.

A census-like report that shows the number of taxable people and slaves per household.


PA State Archives Hours, Directions, & Fees Research Topics Finding Aids for Collections Land Records