Chatham County, Georgia Facts
Chatham County was created on February 5, 1777 from Christ Church and St Philip Parishes. The county was named in honor of William Pitt, 1st Earl of Chatham (1708 - 78), British Prime Minister sympathetic to the Revolutionary cause.
The Chatham County Seat is located in Savannah and in the current county government website is www.chathamcounty.org/.
Counties adjacent to Chatham County are Jasper County, SC (northeast), Bryan County (west), Effingham County.
Chatham County has Federal Census Schedules to assist in looking into your Family Tree. Federal Population Schedules can be found for 1790 (missing), 1800 (missing), 1810, 1820, 1830, 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 (free index), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940.
Chatham County Slave Schedules can be obtained for 1850 & 1860. Chatham County Mortality Schedules can be found for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Chatham County Industry and Agriculture Schedules can be obtained for 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880. Chatham County Union Veterans Schedules can be obtained for 1890.
You can find free down-loadable and also printable census forms that can help with your research.
Chatham County Archives, Societies and Family History Resources
A list of Chatham County Historical and Genealogical Societies, Forums, Message Boards, Libraries, Archives. See Also Georgia Archives, Genealogical and Historical Societies for statewide Addresses and links.
- Georgia State Genealogy Network (facebook.com)
- Bonaventure Historical Society, PO Box 5954; Savannah, GA 31414-5954; (912) 233-8121
- Coastal Heritage Society, 303 MLK Jr Blvd; Savannah, GA 31401-4217; (912) 651-6850.
- Coastal Museums Association; PO Box 1073; Savannah, GA 31402l
- Coastal Scottish Heritage Society, PO Box 31093 ; Savannah , GA 31410-8193 ; (912) 356-0491.
- Fort Pulaski National Monument, PO Box 30757; Savannah, GA 31410-0757; (912) 786-5787.
- Historic Savannah Foundation, PO Box 1733; Savannah, GA 31402-1733; (912) 233-7787
- Savannah Area Genealogical Association, PO Box 15385 ; Savannah , GA 31416-2085
- SCAD Department of Architectural History, PO Box 3146 ; Savannah , GA 31402-3146
Society for the Preservation of Laurel Grove, PO Box 10315; Savannah, GA 31412-0515; Hugh A. Bauer; (912) 231-8166.
- Thunderbolt Museum Society, 2702 Mechanics Ave ;Savannah ,GA 31401-4599 ;(912) 354-8913.
- Tybee Island Historical Society, PO Box 366 ; Tybee Island , GA 31328-0366 ; Cullen Chambers.
- Savannah Diocesan Archives, 601 E Liberty St; Savannah, GA 31401-5196; Gillian Brown; (912) 201-4070.
- Savannah Jewish Federation, PO Box 23527 ; Savannah , GA 31403-3527 ; Sharon Paz; (912) 355-8111.
- Chatham County, Georgia Message Boards (boards.ancestry.com) read and post messages about your ancestors in Chatham County
- Chatham County, Georgia Genealogy Forum (genforum.genealogy.com) read and post messages with other genealogy researchers for Chatham County
Chatham County Courthouse and Government Records
Researchers frequently overlook the importance of Chatham County court, probate, and land records as a useful resource of genealogy and family history.
The chances are great that your ancestors and forefathers have left a comprehensive record of at least some aspects of their lives in the Chatham County court records. Even if your ancestors is not mentioned in a Court case, consider all of the other methods which often can have lead to him or her appearing in court records.
I highly recommend you speak to the clerk's department to validate hours, mailing address, fees and other specifics prior to visiting or asking for information because of sometimes changing contact information. The Department Offices DO NOT DO RESEARCH. The files are readily available to interested parties, barring confidential issues. Many employees will guide men and women in obtaining the resources, however it's up to the person to do the basic research.
The following county facts denotes the earliest date and what birth, marriage, death, land, wills, and legal records will be in Chatham County.
- Chatham County Courthouse (all departments listed below are located here, unless otherwise noted)
- Chatham County Clerk of Superior Court has jurisdiction over cases for title to land and equity, felony cases, adoptions, divorces, , child support and custody enforcement. The clerk also is tasked with recording deeds and maintaining the chain of title to all property in the county.
- Phone: (912) 652-7224
- Land Records: 1785
- Court Records: 1783
- Chatham County Clerk of Probate Court responsibilities include legal proceedings forh Wills, Estates, Guardianships of minor children, Involuntary Committals Hearings, Issuance of Marriage License, ect.. The county probate judge's office is the office where the most valuable genealogical records are created and maintained in the state of Georgia.
- Phone: (912) 652-7265
- Marriage Records: 1806
- Probate Records: 1777
- Georgia Department of Health has copies for copies of birth and death records since Jan 1919, copies of marriage since June 9, 1952 to 1996 and a Divorce records index since June 9, 1952. There is a fee for each copy requested. Please refer to the information to the Statewide Vital Records in Georgia for current fees and application process.
Chatham County Genealogy Links
The following links to Genealogy Resources associated to Chatham County. These links fall into 3 categories: Business Sites, Personal Sites or Organization Sites. Some have free access some have to have a cost. This is basically a list that has been gathered or submitted. I do not recommend or promote one genealogy site above another. Feel free to submit your own most liked Chatham County genealogy or family history related sites.
Facts for Chatham Co. GA Books, Newspapers & Publications
Facts for Chatham Co. GA Birth, Marriage & Death Records
Facts for Chatham Co. GA Court, Probate Land and Tax Records
- See Also Georgia Court & Tax, Land and Probate Records
- Order County Court, Civil or Criminal Records Online
- Savannah, Georgia, Southeast Coastwise Inward and Outward Slave Manifests, 1790 -1860 (search.ancestry.com)
- Chatham County Deed Books (sos.state.ga.us)
- Land Lotteries - Lands were given to Georgia citizens by lotteries from in 1805, 1807, 1820, 1821, 1827, 1832, 1832 (Gold), 1833.
- County Tax Digests (state.ga.us)
- Wills & Estate Records (usgwarchives.net)
- County Records Microfilm Index (state.ga.us)
- Inventory of the county archives of Georgia. (search.ancestry.com)
- Land & Deed Records (usgwarchives.net)
- BLM Land Records (glorecords.blm.gov)
Facts for Chatham Co. GA Census Records
Facts for Chatham Co. GA Cemeteries & Church Records
Facts for Chatham Co. GA Family Websites, Pictures & Histories
Facts for Chatham Co. GA General and History Websites
Facts for Chatham Co. GA Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers
Facts for Chatham Co. GA Military Records
Facts for Chatham Co. GA Schools & Directories