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Substitute Records

When you are unable to find a birth, marriage or death record, you may find substitute information in the following records.  Click on the blue links for more information.


Birth Information Substitutes

  • DEATH RECORDS almost always include birth information (either a date and place or an age)
  • SOCIAL SECURITY death index and the social security application will list a birth date and the place where the person applied for their first card.
  • CENSUS RECORDS will list an age (and maybe a date) as well as a state of birth
  • CEMETERY RECORDS may list both birth date and place where headstones usually list either birth date, birth year, or age
  • CHURCH RECORDS oftentimes have birth dates and places or baptism dates and places
  • MILITARY RECORDS such as draft cards, service records, and pensions records may include birth information
  • BIBLE RECORDS usually include exact dates of birth and may include birth places

Marriage Information Substitutes

  • NEWSPAPERS ANNOUNCEMENTS such as wedding announcements or golden anniversaries will include marriage information
  • CHURCH RECORDS will list maiden name of spouse as well as date and place of marriage
  • OBITUARIES may include the name of a surviving spouse and later obituaries may also include date and place of marriage
  • MILITARY RECORDS especially pensions for widows may include name of spouse as well as date and place of marriage
  • DEATH RECORDS may include the name of spouse and whether married, widowed, or divorced
  • CENSUS RECORDS after 1850 may list the first names of spouse and censuses in the twentieth century include information such as number of years married
  • BIBLE RECORDS may include dates of marriage as well as the maiden name of spouses


Death Information Substitutes

  • SOCIAL SECURITY death index will include a date of death as well as the last place the decedent received benefits
  • CEMETERY RECORDS will list death date and place and a headstone will list a death date
  • OBITUARIES include date and place of death
  • FUNERAL HOME RECORDS will include the date and place of death
  • CHURCH RECORDS may list a date and place of death or a date and place of burial
  • MILITARY RECORDS such as pensions may include the date and place an veteran or his widow died
  • PROBATE RECORDS which show the settlement of a decedent’s property will indicate a date of death as well as a final residence

  • This page was last modified on 23 May 2013, at 22:22.
  • This page has been accessed 310 times.