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If you are researching your family ancestry in Sanilac County, Michigan then you have come to the right place!


We are a volunteer organization dedicated to the genealogy of our ancestors who lived in Sanilac County. The county was officially organized January 1850, but people were living here when the area was part of St. Clair County. Many of our members are experienced genealogists and local historians and as such have access to local references books and genealogical records and are capable of assisting you with your research. While our services are free we do ask that in exchange for any help you receive you consider at least a one-year membership in our organization.


  • To collect, preserve and make accessible Sanilac County records of genealogical value.

  • To encourage and assist members in genealogical research, including traditional and genetic research.

  • To promote interest in family genealogy through public educational efforts.

  • To publish genealogical and historical information pertaining to Sanilac County.

Ready to get started? Click here and print Ancestral Chart and Family Group Sheets.




Regular membership meetings are held on the third Tuesday of the month at times

and locations to be determined, although we typically meet 1pm - 3 pm. 

All interested persons are welcome to attend our meetings and educational programs.

Please note we do not formally meet in December, January or February except to provide

genealogy workshops for the community. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2024 @ 1pm

Aitkin Memorial District Library, 111 N. Howard Avenue, Croswell

Virtual Program: Finding Records to Aid Your Research

Exploration of census records, vital records, newspapers, Heritage Quest, Family Search, and Ancestry, etc.

We are sure that no matter where you are in your research of your family tree, you will find this program

will give you some new ideas to get over that brick wall.

Note: Nominations will be taken for Vice-President, Secretary and Trustee #2.


Tuesday, April 16, 2024 @ 1pm

Aitkin Memorial District Library, 111 N. Howard Avenue, Croswell

Show and Tell

Please bring a treasure that you would like to share with the group.

Election Held for Vice-President, Secretary and Trustee #2.


Tuesday, May 21, 2024 @ 1pm

Aitkin Memorial District Library, 111 N. Howard Avenue, Croswell

Tell Me a Story

Several members will be making presentations on the history of early Sanilac County Pioneers.

If you are interested in making a presentation, please email us so that you may be included

on the schedule for this meeting.





Wednesday, June 5, 2024 @ 5pm

Aitkin Memorial District Library, 111 N. Howard Avenue, Croswell

Beginners Genealogy Workshop

Are you interested in discovering more about your family history, but don't really know where to begin? Maybe you have some experience with genealogical research, but are having difficulty with a particular branch of your family tree. Our experienced society members might be able to help you break through the proverbial brick wall. Bring whatever relevant information you have to the meeting. If you have a laptop bring that too so we can easily access online databases with you. This free workshop is open to the community.




Tuesday, June 18, 2024 @ 1pm

Aitkin Memorial District Library, 111 N. Howard Avenue, Croswell

The Great Midwest Fires of 1871 and 1881

Derek Blount, a professional genealogist, will provide a historical look at the fires that swept the Midwest and Ontario and wiped-out whole communities. What caused the fires and what happened to the people who were affected?




Tuesday, July 16, 2024 @ 5pm

Residence of Jolyne and Tom Fisher

Annual Society Picnic

Join us for our annual picnic on beautiful Lake Huron. Bring a dish to pass. Please bring genealogical books you no longer need to donate to our auction. Proceeds go to the Society.  Details and address will be sent out closer to the date.


Tuesday, August 20, 2024 @ 1pm

Aitkin Memorial District Library, 111 N. Howard Avenue, Croswell

Everyone Makes Mistakes, Even Experienced Genealogists!

Gerald Little, Jr., President of the Flint Genealogical Society and the Huron County Genealogical Society will share his insights and tips on a topic important to beginners as well as seasoned family researchers.








Members of the Society continually work at locating and transcribing records of local genealogical interest. The Society also periodically conducts genealogy workshops open to the public and in other ways promotes interest in the study of family history. Here you will find recently completed works and potential future projects.

 Pioneer Certificates

The Society is supportive of the Pioneer Certificate Program sponsored by the Michigan Genealogical Council. To learn more about this program please visit Recipients will receive either the Pre-Statehood or the First Families certificate, depending upon the arrival date of their earliest Michigan ancestor. The personalized certificates and a pin bearing the emblem of the certificate will be presented and their ancestor's name added to a database of early Michigan pioneers.



before Jan 26, 1837


First Families

Jan 26, 1837 to Dec 31, 1880


Any certificate awardee who can also show their ancestor lived in Sanilac County between Jan 1, 1850 and December 31, 1880 (such as census or vital record) is eligible for an additional certificate compliments the Sanilac County Genealogical Society. You need not be a member of the Society, but there is a $10 fee for non-members. Certificates are free to SCGS members. The Sanilac County Early Pioneers Certificate is an excellent way to recognize early residents of our county, link oneself to local history, and build family pride.



Colonie Saxonia in Delaware Township

We are proud to announce Utz Schmidt, a fellow member of the Sanilac County Genealogical Society, has published a major work Michigan's Thumb: A Paradise for Saxonia Settlers. It chronicles the recruitment, immigration and establishment of 100 German families from Saxony beginning in the 1850s up through the 1930s. His in-depth book took years to research and write. It is 360 pages with many photographs and maps. Both genealogists and historians will enjoy this book. Order your copy at



Sanilac Country Rural Schools Project

A joint project of the Sanilac County Genealogical Society and Sanilac County Historical Society initiated in April, 2018 and completed May, 2019. The purpose was to rediscover our country schools which served our community for well over a century.  Project workers documented the location of 200 former schoolhouses using plat maps, property deeds, personal recollections and historical works.  They sought and obtained thousands of photographs of former schoolhouses, teachers and students, as well as school memorabilia such as report cards, school board meeting records, lists of students and teachers, personal memoirs, reunion notes, etc. The end product was added to the extensive digital collection held by the Sandusky District Library. Go to Sandusky District Library - Genealogy and click on History folder then scroll down to Sanilac Rural Schools. The project was co-chaired by Ella Klein and Richard Parr.

Sanilac County Land Patent Purchases 1833-1849

(including portions of Huron County)

This project involved transcribing a historic register once belonging to Hiram Bacon (1814-1869) who would become the first Deputy Clerk for the fully organized Sanilac County in 1850. Who initiated the register and for what purpose is a mystery.  The record keeping began when the region was part of Desmond Township, St. Clair County and then became Lexington Township, St. Clair County. This work should be used in conjunction with records found at the fully searchable database of General Land Office Records.  Register owner: Richard Parr. Tim Weeder transcribed the register and wrote the introductory section about the register, history of first surveys and surveyors, early boundary changes, Federal land patents and the Detroit Land Office. Project completed November, 2018. Go to Sandusky District Library - Genealogy and scroll down to Documents folder.

Index to Sanilac County Births, Marriages & Deaths 1849-1920

The Index of Birth Records 1867-1879 was compiled by extracting and proofreading courthouse records by the research team of Ella Klein, John Agar, Dorothy Kelly, Pat Parr, Sue Patullo and Jan Wallace.  The Index of Marriage Records 1849-1920 was extracted and proofread by Ella Klein, Shirley Davies, Dorothy Kelly, Tom Maher, Pat Parr, Sue Patullo, Susan Potter, Jan Wallace and Jeanne Wilson. The Index of Marriage Records 1870-1885 was researched by Ella Klein. The Index of Death Records 1889-1898 were compiled by Ella Klein, Norma Barlow, Susan Clarkson, Dorothy Kelly and Tom Maher.  Go to Sandusky District Library - Genealogy and scroll down to Documents folder.

1890 Reconstructed Federal Census for Sanilac County, Michigan

The 1890 Federal Census for Sanilac County, destroyed by fire in Washington D.C., has long frustrated researchers of family history. This project attempts to fill the gap between the 1880 and 1900 Federal Censuses.  The reconstruction was done by members of the Sanilac County Genealogical Society. Sources: 1880 and 1900 Federal Census, newspaper items, vital records, personal information, plat book entries and local history accounts. The 1894 State of Michigan Census was also used for the alphabetically first ten townships, starting with Argyle and ending with Flynn. Unfortunately the other townships were not available. Go to Sandusky District Library - Genealogy and scroll down to Documents folder.

© 2024 by Sanilac County Genealogical Society.

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