New York, Orange County Probate Records, 1787-1938 is a free collection at FamilySearch with more than one million browsable images from Orange County, New York Probate Records. Specifically, these are images from the Orange County Surrogate’s Court in Goshen, New York.


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What Can I Learn from New York Probate Records

Probate records related to the settlement of an estate after a person’s death may include:

  • Name of testator or deceased
  • Names of heirs such as a spouse, children, and other relatives or friends
  • Names of witnesses
  • Residence of testator
  • Lists of belongings, property, and so forth
  • Document and recording dates (Sometimes the date of death will be given. Recording dates are also used to approximate event dates, i.e. a letter of administration was usually written shortly after the time of death.)


How Can Estate and Probate Records Help Me Find Other Records?

With New York estate records information you can:

  • Use the names of heirs to find close family members and friends
  • Use the inventory to learn about the person’s financial situation, occupation, and family members to whom the belongings were given
  • Use any claims on the estate to learn more about the deceased’s life
  • Use the residence to search for land, tax, and court records
  • Look for the deceased person in the state or federal census and put an entire family together
  • Use the person’s age or death date and residence to search for birth records if no birth record is included in the probate file
  • Search for the person and any related heirs in local city directories and extract any information the city directory provides
  • Use the person’s age to estimate draft registration date and find draft registration records or military service records
  • Extract surviving family member information from death records and research each family member


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