Michigan Obituaries (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Michigan Obituaries, 1820-2006 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Michigan, United States
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Flag of Michigan
US Locator Michigan.png
Location of Michigan
Record Description
Record Type Obituaries
Collection years 1820-2006
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites



What is in the Collection?

The collection consists of an index and images to an obituary collection for the years 1820 to 2006. It is organized by county or newspaper and then alphabetically. Extracted information as well as newspaper clippings are represented. The originals are housed in several libraries and repositories throughout Michigan. Some collections contain obituaries from other states and nearby regions.

The Van Buren County card files contain no surnames that begin with the letter G.

To Browse this Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Michigan Obituaries, 1820-2006.

Collection Content

Sample Image

What Can this Collection Tell Me?

The records usually contain:

  • Name of the deceased
  • Age
  • Birth date and place
  • Death date and place
  • Names of parents, spouse or other relatives
  • Name of cemetery
  • Name of newspaper, date and place of publication

How Do I Search the Collection?

To begin your search you will need to know:

  • The name of your ancestor.
  • The approximate date of death.
  • The place where the death occurred.
  • The names of family members and their relationships.

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 compare the information on 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.

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:
To search the collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒Select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page
⇒Select the appropriate "Location"
⇒Select the appropriate "Name or Name Range" which takes you to the images.


For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line article FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.

What Do I Do Next?

When you have located your ancestor’s obituary, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These records are often brief so it can be easy to confuse individuals. Compare what information is given with what you already know about your ancestor to make sure it is the correct person. Next, look at the pieces of information given in the obituary for new information. Add any new information to your records of each family. You should also look for leads to other records about your ancestors.

I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the information found in the obituary to search for the family in census records.
  • Use the information found in the obituary to search for the family in church records.
  • Use the information found in the obituary to obtain the actual death record.
  • Use the information found in the obituary to search additional state and county 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.

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.
  • 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.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby cemeteries.


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:

“Michigan Obituaries, 1820-2006.” Database with Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Various offices and archives, Michigan.

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 Michigan Obituaries, 1820-2006.


Image Citation:

The image citation is available by clicking on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Michigan Obituaries, 1820-2006.

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.