Charter Index (1874-1973)

Charters or “articles of incorporation” were formally recorded beginning in 1874 with Pennsylvania legislation to provide for the regulation and incorporation of certain corporations.  This index includes two record series of charters filed separately in the Prothonotary office and in the Recorder of Deeds office.  Charters filed with the Prothonotary are the charter petitions and proof of publication in newspapers.  Charters filed with the Recorder are the final recorded copy.  In some cases there may be two separate entries for the same charter; one the petition and one the final recorded copy.  Original charter records filed in the Prothonotary’s office (petitions and proof of publications) beginning in 1900 may be available in the Archives.   

Search Tips:  Charters prior to 1874 may be recorded in Trust Books.  Charters recorded after 1973 may be found in regular deed books or the Corporation Bureau in Harrisburg, PA.    

Lancaster County Charter Index