California Marriage Index (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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California, Marriage Index, 1960-1985 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
California, United States
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Flag of California
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Location of California
Record Description
Record Type Marriage Index
Collection years 1960-1985
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites


What is in the Collection?

This Collection will include records from 1960 to 1985.

The collection consists of an index to marriages from the California Department of Health Services in Sacramento. The index is provided by Ancestry.com.


Collection Content

Coverage Map

To see a coverage map of FamilySearch's holdings of California county marriage records, click here.

What Can this Collection Tell Me?

The index may include the following information:

  • Name of bride and groom
  • Marriage date and place
  • Name of spouse (May only list surname)
  • Reference ID - Page/Volume/Entry/Certificate Number

How Do I Search the Collection?

To begin your search it is helpful to know the following:

  • The name of the bride and groom
  • The approximate marriage date and place

Search by Name by visiting the Collection Page:
Fill in the requested information on the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the individuals in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to find your ancestor. Keep in mind:

  • There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.
  • Your ancestor may have used different names, or variations of their name, throughout their life.
  • 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 wiki article FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.

What Do I Do Next?

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.

I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the information in the index to search for the marriage record
  • Use the marriage date and place as the basis for compiling a new family group or for verifying existing information.
  • Use the date along with the place to find the family in church and census records.
  • Compile the marriage 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 marriage records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives of the bride and groom who may have married 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.
  • The information in marriage records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.

I Can’t Find Who I’m Looking for, What Now?

  • Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for nicknames and abbreviated names.
  • Look for a different index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume. Local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.
  • Try alternative search methods such as only filling in the surname search box (or the given name search box) on the landing page leaving the other box empty and then click on search. This should return a list of everyone with that particular name. You could then browse the list for individuals that may be your ancestor.

For a summary of this information see the wiki article: United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records).

Citing this Collection

Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.

Collection Citation:

"California, Marriage Index, 1960-1985." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2016. From "California, Marriage Index, 1960-1985." Database and images. Ancestry.com. www.ancestry.com : 2007. Citing Center of Health Statistics, California Department of Health Services, Sacramento.

Record Citation (or citation for the index entry):

The citation for a record is available with each record in this collection, at the bottom of the record screen. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for California, Marriage Index, 1960-1985.

How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.