Vermont, Vital Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.

Contents

Record Description

The collections consist of an index and images from microfilm of births, marriages and deaths. This collection includes images for the years 1955-2003, but roughly 20% of marriages missing from 2001-2003, being all the civil unions legally performed in Vermont. These missing records are available in the Ancestry.com database. The records for 1955-1979 are arranged alphabetically. Index and images courtesy of Ancestry.com and the Vermont State Archives.

For a list of records by document type, dates and surnames currently published in this collection, select the Browselink from the collection landing page.

Record Content

Birth records usually contain the following:

  • Child’s name and gender
  • Birth date and place
  • Race
  • Name of parents, including maiden name of mother
  • Age(s) of parents and their residence
  • Father's occupation
  • Birthplace of father
  • Birthplace of mother
  • Live or stillborn birth
  • Name of medical attendant
  • Registration date

Marriage records usually contain the following:

  • Date and place of marriage
  • Groom's name and age
  • Groom's residence and occupation
  • Birthplace of groom
  • Names of groom's parents and their birthplace
  • Number of marriages of groom
  • Bride's name and age
  • Bride's residence
  • Birthplace of bride
  • Names of bride's parents and their birthplace
  • Number of marriages of bride
  • Name and title of person performing ceremony

Death records usually contain the following:

  • Name and age of deceased
  • Death date and place
  • Cause of death
  • Marital status
  • Name of surviving spouse
  • Race, occupation, and residence of deceased
  • Names of parents
  • Birth place of deceased
  • Level of education
  • Name and address of informant
  • Attending physician
  • Burial information

Burial/removal records usually contain the following:

  • Name of person to whom certificate was issued
  • Town/city, and county issuing permit
  • Death date
  • Name and age of deceased
  • Cause of death
  • Medical attendant
  • Purposed date and place of burial/removal
  • Undertaker's name and address
  • Name and title of person issuing permit
  • Permit date

How to Use the Record

To begin your search, it will be helpful to know the following:

  • The approximate date the event occurred
  • The place the event occurred
  • The name of the individual or individuals, such as the bride and groom, infant, or deceased

Search the Collection

To search the collection by name fill in your ancestor’s name in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about those in the list to what you already know about your own ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person.

If you did not find the person you were looking for, you may need to search the collection image by image.
⇒Select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page
⇒Select the appropriate "Record Type, Year Range and Volume" which takes you to the images

Search the collection by image. Again you will need to compare the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine which one is your ancestor.

Be aware that with either search you may need to compare the information about more than one person to make this determination.

As you are searching it is helpful to know such information as your ancestor’s given name and surname, some identifying information such as residence and age, and family relationships. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name as your ancestor and that your ancestor may have used nicknames or different names at different times.

  • If your ancestor used an alias or a nickname, be sure to check for those alternate names.
  • Even though these indexes are very accurate they may still contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.

For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line video at FamilySearch Search Tips.

Using the Information

When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family. For example:

  • Use the marriage date and place as the basis for compiling a new family group or for verifying existing information.
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth of each partner to find a couple's birth records and parents' names.
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth to find the family in census records.
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate church and land records.
  • Use the parents' birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.

Tips to Keep in Mind

  • The name of the officiator may be a clue to their religion or area of residence in the county.
  • Use a marriage number to identify previous marriages.
  • Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment or military records.
  • The name of the undertaker or mortuary could lead you to funeral and cemetery records which often include the names and residences of other family members.
  • Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname as the bride or groom; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have been born, married, or died in the same county or nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family or even the second marriage of a parent. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • The information in marriage records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.
  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1900.
  • There is also some variation in the information given from one marriage record to another record.

Unable to Find Your Ancestor?

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
  • Search for the marriage record of the marriage partner if known.
  • Check for a different index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties

General Information About These Records

The records are handwritten on preprinted pages which have been bound into volumes. The collection consists of vital records (births, marriages, and deaths), cemetery records, and burial and removal permits. They are arranged by town, record type, then date. The content and completeness of the records varies by town.

Vital record keeping began with the earliest permanent settlement, about 1760. All original records are maintained by the town or city. The present vital registration law was enacted in 1857. This statute required all vital events be recorded in the town where they occurred. A centralized registration system was established in 1919 and copies of the town vital records was sent to the state.

This collection contains records compiled and submitted to the state by town clerks in response to the 1919 law. For events prior to that time, the information submitted was complied from a variety of sources, including original town vital records where they existed, but also church records, tombstones, and other sources. Therefore for records prior to 1919 it should not be assumed that the source is original town vital records. There is generally no indication of the source used for these records.  

Known Issues with This Collection

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See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to support@familysearch.org. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.

Related Websites

Vermont State Archives

Related Wiki Articles

Contributions to this Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. Guidelines are available to help you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide. If you would like to get more involved join the WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

Citations for individual image records are available for this collection. Browse through images in this collection and click on the "Show Citation" box:

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.


Citation for This Collection

The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Record collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher and archive for the original records.

"Vermont, Vital Records, 1760-2003." Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Derived from Vermont birth, marriage, and death indexes and images, 1909-2008. Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com : 2010. Citing Vermont State Archives and Records Administration, Montpelier.

 

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  • This page was last modified on 6 June 2014, at 15:55.
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