Sources of Genealogical Information in Lancaster County

Evangelical and Reformed Historical Society

Philip Schaff Library
Lancaster Theological Seminary
555 West James Street
Lancaster, PA 17603
(717) 290-8711
(717) 290-8734

Rev. Richard R. Berg, Archivist

Hours: Monday to Thursday 9am-4pm (Please call in advance to verify hours.)
Fees: $5.00 daily visitor; $25.00/yr membership; photocopies and printouts.

Collection Includes:

  • Records of the Evangelical and Reformed Church such as synods, clergy, church files, etc.
  • Manuscript collections of the Mercersberg theologians.
  • Local Church Records such as baptisms, marriages, deaths, etc.
  • Pennsylvania German frakturs.

Family History Center

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints
1210 East King Street
Lancaster, PA 17602
(717) 295-1719

Ann Herbert, Director

Hours: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday 9:30am-2:30pm and Thursday evenings 6:30pm-9pm
Fees: Use of the Center is free, but there is a charge for photocopies, print outs and microfilm loans.

Collection Includes:

  • Family History Library Catalog on microfiche, which lists the resources available in the
    Family History Library in Utah.
  • Family Search a collection of databases including but not limited to the Social Security Death
    Index, Scottish Church Records, and United States Military Index.
  • Small collection of microfilm and ability to access microfilm collection in the main Family
    History Library.
  • Small collection of published material of specific local interest.

Special Notes:
These centers are run by volunteers; as such the level of help that can be provided will vary. The staff
cannot do the research for you although they may be able to point you in the right direction.

Historical Society of Cocalico Valley

249 West Main Street
Ephrata, PA 17522
(717) 733-1616

Clarence Spohn, President
Cynthia Marquet, Librarian

Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday 9:30am-6pm and Saturday 8:30am-5pm
Fees: $20 Membership (use of the library free), $3 daily use, photocopies and printouts

Collection Includes:

  • Census records, wills, baptismal records.
  • Local histories
  • Atlases
  • Local church records
  • Books on European immigration records focused on Swiss and German.
  • Select record for Berks, Chester, Lebanon, and York Counties

Services: For a $30 fee, the staff will research mailed requests. Questions must be specific and contain as
much detail as possible. Requests for copies of articles and obituaries from the Ephrata Review are also
available at a cost $3.00 for the first item and $2.00 for subsequent items.

Lancaster Public Library

125 North Duke Street
Lancaster, PA 17602
(717) 394-2651

Heather Sharpe, Executive Director
Hours: Monday – Thursday 9am-9pm and Friday-Saturday 9am-5:30pm
Fees: $0.25 a page for photocopies and printouts

Collection Includes:

  • Census records (microfilm)
  • Local newspapers (paper and microfilm)
  • Local histories
  • Atlases
  • Select collection of family histories
  • Select church and cemetery records
  • Small collection of passenger lists and immigration records
  • Lancaster City Directories


  • Reference Librarian will search materials in response to specific and detailed requests.
  • Periodicals Department does provide a copying service for obituaries and articles.

Special Note:
All of the above materials and more appear in the Library’s On-line Catalog available through their website above.

Lancaster County Historical Society

230 North President Avenue
Lancaster, PA 17603
(717) 392-4633

Rob Weber, Director of Library Services
Heather S. Tennies, Director of Archival Services
Majorie r. Bardeen, Librarian
Kevin E. Shue CG, Genealogist

Hours: Wednesday, Friday, Saturday 9:30am-4:30pm and Tuesday and Thursday 9:30am-9:30pm
Fees: $5.00 for non-members; $30.00/yr membership fee (library use free); photocopies $0.25 a page

Collection Includes:

  • Land records (deeds, warrants, mortgages)
  • Local histories
  • Family histories and files
  • Personal papers
  • Select wills (microfilm) and indexes to wills
  • Atlases
  • Local church records (marriages, baptisms, burials)
  • Cemetery records
  • Census records (microfilm)
  • Newspapers (microfilm)
  • Passenger lists
  • Immigration lists and early naturalization lists
  • Lancaster City Directories
  • Lancaster County Records
    • Criminal Court Records
    • Civil and Orphan’s Court Records
    • Estate Inventories
    • Marriage License Applications and Consents

Services: Research services are available. The fee is $30.00 for members and $35.00 for non-members.
Copies from the Historical Society’s journal are also available, as well as, copies of documents within the
collection. Please visit their website for submission requirements.

Special Note:

The above list does not do full justice to the depth of the Historical Society’s collection. The Historical
Society makes their catalog available through their website. To gain a better understanding of their
collection please visit their website and search the catalogue.

Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society

2215 Mill Stream Road
Lancaster, PA 17602
(717) 393-9745
(717) 393-8751 [FAX]

Steven Ness, Librarian and Archivist
Lloyd Zeager, Assistant Librarian

Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 8:30am-4:30pm (Closed all major holidays)
Fees: $5.00 for non-members to use the library

Collection Includes:

  • Genealogical card file
  • Directories and maps
  • Passenger lists
  • Census records
  • Cemetery transcripts
  • Deeds and tax records
  • Surname file
  • Obituaries
  • Periodicals
  • Wills
  • Orphan’s Court records

Services: Genealogical Research Service fees are $20.00 for members and $25.00 for non-members per
hour. Visit their website for request submission forms and photocopy pricing.

Lititz Historical Foundation

145 East Main Street
Lititz, PA 17543-2009
(717) 627-4636

Hours: Monday-Saturday 10am-4pm Memorial Day to October
Fees: Lititz Museum is free by donation. Guided tours of the 1792 Johannes Mueller House are available for a small fee.

  • Collection Includes:
  • Local history materials
  • Local genealogy materials

Manheim Historical Society Heritage Center

88 South Grant Street
Manheim, PA 17545
(717) 665-7989

D. Earnest Weinhold, President
Beatryce Kreiner, Curator

Hours: Monday-Friday 1pm-4pm, Wednesday 6pm-9pm, and Saturday 9am-Noon
Fees: No information

Collection Includes:

  • Local history materials
  •  Manheim newspapers

Special Notes:

The Manheim Heritage Center’s main focus is restoring and preserving properties of importance to the
cultural history of the town. It maintains a museum and research center; however, these are run by
volunteers so knowledge of the collections will vary.

Records Management Office
Records and Archives Services

Lancaster County Courthouse
50 North Duke Street
P.O. Box 83480
Lancaster, PA 17608-3480
(717) 299-8319

Dory Crater, Director

Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30am-5pm
Fees: charge of $0.50 a page for photocopies

Collection Includes:

  • Deeds from May 10, 1729 to near present
  • Mortgages books from 1812 to near present (originally found in deed books)
  • Testate and Intestate records from 1730 to near present
  • Orphan’s Court records from 1742 to near present
  • Marriage licenses from 1885 to near present
  • Birth records from 1881 to 1906
  • Death records from 1894 to 1907
  • Indexes to estate inventories and accounts (records themselves are housed at the Lancaster County Historical Society)

Services: Research service is available. Only one letter containing no more than four specific research
requests at a time is accepted. Copying charges apply.

Special Notes:
The Office of Records and Archives Services do not maintain current records. The individual offices, such
as the Recorder of Deeds, will house current records some of which may not be immediately available to
the public.

Seibert Library and Resource Center

Winters Heritage House
47 East High Street
Elizabethtown, PA 17022
(717) 367-4672

Judy K. Bard, Genealogy Librarian

Hours: Thursday-Friday 1pm-3:30pm and Saturday 9:30am-Noon March to December
Fees: Free to the public, contributions welcome

  • Collection Includes:
  •  Local history
    •  Area histories
    • Building histories
    • Business histories
  • Oral histories
  • Family histories
  • Obituaries, wills, cemetery records
  • Deeds
  • Maps
  • Photographs
  • Yearbooks
  • Periodicals

Compiled by: Gerald Bruce and E. Margaret Coldren
Lancaster Public Library
September 5, 2008