This digital collection is comprised of website links, or URLs, to materials that are from the physical collections of the State Archives of North Carolina, and are available online through websites not maintained by the State Archives. The websites currently included are Ancestry, FamilySearch, North Carolina Digital Heritage Center, North Carolina Maps, and YouTube.
Many of the collections linked to are solely SANC material, but a few of the collections have items that come from other institutions. Please check the citations in the linked collection to see which institution the record came from, or contact the State Archives for more information. Frequently items in the linked collection are original records in the custody of the State Archives, but some items, like birth and death indexes, are only available on microfilm.
Please keep in mind that to successfully use the Ancestry links, your computer will already need to be logged into an Ancestry account before you click on the URL. Ancestry is a paid subscription service, but many libraries may offer access. Contact your local public library branch, or contact the State Library of North Carolina which offers access on site. Several collections on Ancestry and FamilySearch have been partially digitized or are in progress of being added to those sites, and therefore may not be complete.
Many of the URLs link directly to an individual item in a collection, but in some cases, the URLs direct to the collection page on the third-party website. The information provided about collections on third-party websites many not accurately reflect the records held at the SANC. When possible, if information is incorrect on the third-party website, the correct information will be noted in the URL description.
This is an on-going digital reference collection, and items will be added as they become available.
SANC items that are currently listed as part of the Links to SANC Materials digital collection:
- selection of North Carolina County records (for more information on county records, please see the county box lists, or the county records guide)
- North Carolina State Supreme Court Case Files (for more information, please see the Supreme Court finding aid)
- North Carolina Maps
- Vital records:
- Birth Indexes: North Carolina did not start to issue birth certificates until 1913. Prior to 1913, no government record existed to document most births. SANC does not have any original birth records. Birth indexes are only available on microfilm. Periodically birth and death indexes are combined on microfilm.
- Death Certificates and Indexes: North Carolina did not start to issue death certificates until 1913. From 1913 to approximately the late 1940s, it was not uncommon for North Carolinians to not have a death certificates, especially in rural areas. Death certificates from 1913 through 1981 are available at State Archives of North Carolina. Death Indexes are only available on microfilm. Periodically birth and death indexes are combined on microfilm.
- Marriage Bonds: Prior to 1868, North Carolina did not have any statewide requirement for marriage licenses. Instead, North Carolinians seeking to marry usually obtained a marriage bond in which the groom agreed to pay a certain amount of money to the bride’s family if he did not go through with the wedding. Marriage bonds are not necessarily legal proof that a marriage took place, but they are the best official record of a marriage prior to 1868. Please note that, unlike with marriage licenses, it is extremely rare for marriage bonds to list the parents of the bride or groom.
- Other Marriage Records: North Carolina began issuing marriage certificates and licenses in 1868. It is true that certain counties began issuing licenses earlier, but in most cases, these are treated as marriage bonds when conducting research. Marriage licenses and certificates usually provide the exact date of the marriage as well as the parents of both parties when such information was known. In some counties, the record that survives is not marriage licenses but is instead a marriage register in which the county listed all of the couples who received a marriage license. A register is considered an equivalent record to a certificate or license when conducting genealogical research. In addition to the standard marriage records, Cohabitation Bonds were issued to previously enslaved couples in the late 1860s to signify that they had been living as a married couple prior to emancipation.
For links to materials related to North Carolina held at institutions throughout the state, visit the State Library of North Carolina’s NC MOSAIC project.