Contact county genealogical and historical societies
Obituaries have been published in Washington since the late 1800's. Obituaries may provide information such as the age of the deceased, birth date and place, names of living relatives and their residences, maiden name, occupation, death date, cause of death, and place of burial. Deceased family members are frequently mentioned. Obituaries may also mention previous places of residence, immigration information, religion, and any social organizations or activities in which the deceased was involved.
Generally, the first step to obtaining an obituary is to find the death date of the person so that the obituary can be more easily found in a newspaper. Death dates may be obtained from the Statewide death index, or cemeteries in the local area where the person is believed to have died. Once a death date is known, the local library in the area may be contacted to learn whether or not they have newspapers for the time period needed, and if someone is willing to look for an obituary in that newspaper. If the newspapers are not held at the library, the local newspaper office may also be contacted to learn where older editions of the newspaper are kept. Some libraries and even newspaper publishers keep obituary files.
Obituary Resources On Line
- Obituaries, recent years at PublicLibraries.com. List of newspapers included. People Search gives residences, possible relatives, ($) to see obituary.
- Obituary Collection 2003-2011 at Ancestry.com ($). Searchable, list of newspapers.
http://search.ancestry.com/oldsearch/obit?cj=1&netid=cj&o_xid=0001029688&o_lid=0001029688&o_sch=Affiliate+External Ancestry.com Obituary Collection
http://search.ancestry.com/oldsearch/rectype/periodicals/news/dblist.aspx?tp=2&p=50&cj=1&netid=cj&o_xid=0003096283&o_lid=0003096283&o_sch=Affiliate+External Ancestry.com Historical Newspaper Collection
- A new Obituary database is available through the____
- The Washington Obituary Project is a part of the USGenWeb Archives.
- The Internet Archive may occasionally have published books which include a collection of obituaries. To search this archive, type Washington Obituaries in the search box.
Additional Obituary Resources
- The "United States Obituaries" and "United States Newspapers" Wiki articles list sources for finding obituaries and the newspapers that published them. Also, see "Washington Newspapers" for additional sources and how to locate newspapers.
- For Washington, some obituaries have been published and indexed in genealogical periodicals. Many of these are referenced in the "Places" section of the Periodical Source Index (PERSI) which is described in the "Washington Periodicals" section.
For published obituaries and indexes, click FamilySearch Catalog and select the topic "Obituaries." For counties, simply add a comma and click Search.