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Rensselaer County New York Genealogy and History

County seat: Troy

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Search Free Rensselaer County New York Genealogy and Family History Records Online including census, cemetery, vital, military and other genealogical and historical records that can be used for your family history research.

Rensselaer County, New York genealogy and family history page is a place where you can come in and research your genealogy and family history. We also do our best to provide a history of the area, to provide you with an overview of the time in which your ancestors lived.

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Rensselaer County new York History

The area that is now Rensselaer County was inhabited by the Algonquian-speaking Mohican Indian tribe at the time of European encounter. Kiliaen van Rensselaer, a Dutch jeweler and merchant, purchased the area in 1630 and incorporated it in his patroonship Rensselaerswyck. (It was part of the Dutch colony New Netherland).

The land passed into English rule in 1664; the Dutch regained control in 1673, but the English took it back in 1674. Until 1776, the year of American independence, the county was under English or British control. The county was not organized as a legal entity until after the Revolution, in 1791, when it was created from an area that was originally part of the very large Albany County.

In 1807, in a county re-organization, the rural sections of Troy were set off as Towns, and the city was incorporated. The two towns created were Brunswick (named for Duke Friedrich Wilhelm of Braunschweig-Lüneburg) and Grafton (named for Henry FitzRoy, 5th Duke of Grafton). A third town, Philipstown, was set off in 1806. In 1808, it was renamed Nassau after the duke of that area.

Rensselaer County Genealogy Records Online

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Genealogy Research in Rensselaer County, New York

Rensselaer County Clerk
105 Third Street
Troy, NY 12180
Phone: (518) 270-4080

Rensselaer County Surrogate Court
Rensselaer County Courthouse
80 Second Street
Troy, NY 12180

Adjacent counties

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