Finding Ancestors wherever their trails led

Tompkins County
New York
Genealogy and History




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County Information
Named after Daniel D. Tompkins, who served as Governor of New York and Vice President of the United States of America.

County Seat: Ithaca
Year Organized: 1817
Square Miles: 476

Courthouse Info:
County Courthouse
320 North Tioga Street
Ithaca, NY 14850-4264

Early Days in Ithaca
Ithaca, New York, world-famed home of Cornell University, was not always Ithaca. When founded in 1788, it was known merely as the "Flats" and, a little later, as "Sodom." Then someone of a classical turn of mind suggested "Ithaca" which became permanent when the town's only hotel used that name on its sign board. The first railroad to reach Ithaca was the Ithaca and Owego, chartered in 1828 and opened with horse-drawn vehicles in 1834. It is the oldest part of the present Lackawanna system. In early coal days, it was an important link in the transportation of Pennsylvania anthracite west via Cayuga Like and the Erie Canal. Present day Ithaca with its great college and its easy proximity to beautiful Cayuga Lake, is one of the important show places of the country. The truly remarkable scenery of its immediate vicinity includes some 96 falls, and over 200 gorges and cascades of Swiss-like grandeur. Taughannock Falls, 9 miles north of the city and 50 feet higher than Niagara, sends its water down through the impressive distance of 215 feet. [New-York Tribune. (New York, N.Y.), 18 June 1922]

Tompkins County Data



Birth Records


Church Histories / Records

County Records

Death Records

Family Bibles


Military Records

Miscellaneous Data

Newspaper Gleanings

Obituaries and Death Notices

School Records

Wills and Probate Records

Website Updates:
July 2017:  obits for ELMENDORF, COY, WINSLOW, FOOTE, FINCH, BATES, STEWART.  Marriage announcement for ANSELL-BAYARD

Previous Updates


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