County Hall

Address: Erie County Clerk
25 Delaware Avenue
Buffalo, New York 14202
Phone: (716) 858-8865

Most records are stored in the old Erie County Hall building at 92 Franklin Street which is directly behind and connected to the new county office building at 25 Delaware Avenue. The entrance to the underground parking below the Main Place Mall is directly across Franklin Street from the old County Hall.

Most records of interest to genealogists are on the first floor and basement record rooms. They have NYS and Federal Censuses for 1850, 1855, 1860, 1865, 1870, 1875, 1880, 1892, 1905, 1915 and 1925. Deeds, some microfilm birth records, some marriage records, divorce records and Surrogate's Court records are also available in this building.

The County Clerk's Office will perform searches in response to mail requests. The fee for a search of any record is $5.00 per name for each two year period of portions thereof. Fees are payable in advance by certified check or money order. It is necessary to know the given name(s) and the surname(s) of the individual(s) and the year in which the record was filed.

Birth Records

The County Clerk's Office has a few microfilmed birth records, from 1878 to 1913. There are no indexes. You have to go in or send someone to view them.

Census Records

Censuses are available for Buffalo and Erie County for 1850, 1855, 1860, 1865, 1870, 1875, 1880, 1892, 1905, 1915 and 1925. To search census records, it is necessary to know the individuals name, address, election district and ward. The fee for a census transcript is $5.00.

Deeds

To search for deeds, it is necessary to know the name of the grantor or grantee and the year of filing.

Divorce Records

Divorce records from the early 1800's to the present are filed in the County Clerk's Office. Only the parties involved or their attorneys may obtain copies from this office.

Naturalization Records.

The Erie County Clerk has naturalization records from 1827 to 1919. Two documents are available, alien declarations and naturalization certificates. Neither contains much information of a genealogical nature, but it can be interesting to see the actual signature of your ancestor.

The alien declarations and indexes are in Basement Record Room B. A card index to the naturalization certificates is located in the same room. Be careful to note the name of the court listed on the index card. County Court naturalization certificates are in one series of volumes, found in the same room as the card index. Certificates from Superior Court are in another series of volumes in another room at the far end of the basement.

Available information usually is date of intent to become a citizen, date of naturalization, witnesses names and country or sovereign of former allegiance.

The indexes appear to be full of spelling errors and omissions and some researchers have not been replacing the cards back in alphabetical order, so be sure to check backwards and forwards from where your ancestor should be and all alternate spellings.

Copies are $1.00 apiece, by mail only, so you must carefully note what you want copied, the name of the court, volume and page number, and the person's name.

The Immigration and Naturalization Service has records of naturalization created after September 27, 1906.

Wills

Wills are available from Surrogate's Court, Will & Probate Division, Erie County Hall, 92 Franklin Street, Buffalo, New York 14202.


last edited 25 Jul 2008

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