How to Find United States Death Records
Start Here: Where Did the Death Occur?
To find a death record, choose the state the death occurred:
- What if you don't know the state? — Go to How to Estimate Deaath Information
Tips about Searching United States Death Records
- Most states began recording deaths between 1900 and 1930, but each started a different year. For example,
- New England states started recording deaths on the town level starting as early as the first residents of the town. New England states consist ofConnecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont,and New Hampshire.
- Some states began recording deaths on the county level as early as the 1860s.
- Restrictions: some states have restrictions on who can see them. Each state has its own laws. One state may have deaths for some years available to everyone while other states may limit access to relatives.
Frequently Asked Questions about United States death Records
How do I find my ancestor’s death record?
- Use the Finding US Death Records wiki page
- Check online indexes and digital images
- Check repositories, such as archives and libraries (FHL)
- Obtain certificate from the government agency ($$)
Why would I want to search for a death record?
- Gives death date and place
- May give birth date and place
- May give parents names to extend a generation
- May give the state or county of the deceased's parents' birth place
What information does a death record include?
Information gathered by state and county officials differs from each state. Death records may contain the following:
- Name of deceased
- Death date and place of deceased
- Cause of death
- Marital status and spouse's name
- Birth date and place of deceased
- Parents of the deceased
- Birth places of deceased's parents
- Name of undertaker and cemetery where buried
More information about US Death Records can be found on United States Vital Records wiki page.