Texas, Death Index, 1964-1998 (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Texas Death Index, 1964-1998 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Texas, United States
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Flag of Texas
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Location of Texas
Record Description
Record Type Death Index
Collection years 1964-1998
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites



What is in the Collection?

The collection consists of a name index to Texas statewide death certificates for 4 million people who died between 1964 and 1998. Standard forms for death certificates and report of death were filled out by a county clerk, mortician or medical professional, who talked to the informant. The certificates were filed with county clerks or local registrars, who forwarded the information to the Texas Department of Health, now known as the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Texas has recorded deaths from 1903 to the present, plus about 250 registrations from the 1890s-1939 and nearly 2,000 delayed registrations of death from 1890s-1990, as reported from obituaries and probate records.Deaths were recorded to better serve public health needs. They were also used in connection with the probate of wills and the administration of estates. Information pertaining to death is reliable; including cause of death, name of the attending physician or medical professional, name and address of the funeral home used, and the exact date and place of burial. The other information is usually provided by the informant (often a family member). This is an index only Collection.


To Browse This Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Texas Death Index, 1964-1998.


What Can these Records Tell Me?

Information in the index:

  • Name of deceased
  • Death date
  • Death place
  • Gender
  • Marital status

Important genealogical facts in death entries:

  • Date of death for the deceased. Starting around 1911, the records increasingly include the burial and birth dates and places.
  • Place of death for the deceased. Starting around 1911, the records increasingly include the cemetery name where buried, as well as the birthplace (the state and sometimes town or county).
  • Name of the deceased. Starting around 1911, the records increasingly include the name of the spouse and parents, often with maiden surnames of women. The informant, who is often a child or other family member, is also named.
  • Starting around 1911, the records increasingly note the names of the spouse and parents
  • Starting around 1911, indicate whether the deceased was single, married, widowed, or divorced at the time of death
  • Starting around 1911, give the occupation of the deceased and may identify the employer

How Do I Search the Collection?

To begin your search it is helpful to know at least some of the following:

  • The name of the person at the time of death.
  • The place where the death occurred.
  • The approximate death date.

Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information in the list to what you already know about your ancestor to determine if it is the correct person. You may need to compare several persons in the list before you find your ancestor.

Search by Name by visiting the Collection Page:


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

What Do I Do Next?

Whenever possible, view the original records to verify the information and to find additional information that might not be reported. These pieces of information can lead you to additional records and family members.

I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the information to obtain the actual death certificate.
  • Use the information to locate funeral home, obituary or cemetery record.
  • Use the information to find other records such as birth, christening, marriage, census, land and probate records.
  • Use the information to find additional family members.
  • Repeat this process with additional family members found, to find more generations of the family.
  • Church Records often were kept years before government records were required and are a good source for finding ancestors before 1900.

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

  • Try viewing the original record to see if there were errors in the transcription of the name, age, residence, etc. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • Collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This list can help you identify possible relations that can be verified by records.
  • If you cannot locate your ancestor in the locality in which you believe they lived, then try searching records of a nearby locality in an area search.
  • Standard spelling of names typically did not exist during the periods our ancestors lived in. Try variations of your ancestor’s name while searching the index or browsing through images.
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names. Try searching for these names as well.
  • Search the indexes and records of Texas, United States Genealogy.
  • Search in the Texas Archives and Libraries.


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:

"Texas, Death Index, 1964-1998." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing Department of State Health Services, Austin.

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 Texas, Death Index, 1964-1998.


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