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Records in the New York State Archives document functions and activities of State government; none of the records were created for the purpose of genealogical research. However, many records in the Archives contain information on individuals. Among these records are indexes to vital records (births, marriages, deaths); records of war service (War of 1812 through World War I); land records (mostly transactions involving the Colony or State of New York); court records (including colonial wills and early nineteenth century civil cases); and records of some correctional and custodial institutions.
The following resources are designed to highlight record series in the New York State Archives that are most useful for genealogical research.