Searching for Records in Columbia County, NY

Wednesday, August 3, 2016 - 9:30am

Located in eastern New York, Columbia County is bordered by Dutchess, Rensselaer, Greene, Ulster and Albany Counties.  Columbia was one of the first counties in New York to be settled by European colonists.  Major land transactions for this region include the Rensselaerswyck purchase of 1629 and the Livingston Manor purchase of 1686. In 1710, Robert Livingston, a Scottish colonist, sold 6,000 acres of property in present-day Columbia County to the Queen of England, to be used for work camps and housing for around 1,200 Palatine German refugees.  Originally part of Albany County, Columbia County was formed on April 4, 1786.  Today, Columbia’s county seat is Hudson.

If you are searching for records in this region, you should try visiting the Columbia County Historical Society, Museum, and Library.  Their holdings include church and cemetery record transcriptions, census indexes, city and county directories, family genealogies, local history and genealogy books, family surname les, and photographs. They house indexes to deaths, marriages, and births from county papers 1800–1930, and their website contains index to cemetery books and catalog of manuscripts held in research library.

While in Columbia County, if you are searching for records in Germantown, NY, you should visit the Germantown History Department.  Their holdings include genealogies, local history, cemetery records, Civil War letters, maps and atlases, photographs, religious records, Germantown Central School yearbooks (some online), veterans records, and wills. They also have resources for Palatine family research.

A copy of our complete Columbia County Guide is available for purchase on our website.