Saturday, March 31, 2007

Vital Records

Vital records include birth certificates, death records, marriage licenses, divorce decrees, naturalization, adoption, and land records. At you will find a comprehensive resource to find vital records online. They also have maps and many interesting links.

Vital records in the United States weren't common until the early 1900s. Vital records usually contain the full name of the individual involved in the event, the date of the event, and the county, state, or town where the event took place.

Different types of vital records have different types of information.

Birth records usually have the parent's full names including maiden name of the mother, the name of the baby, the date of the birth, and county where the birth took place, as well as the birthplaces of the baby's parents, the addresses of the parents, the number of children that the parents have, the race of the parents, and the parents' occupations.

Marriage records often record the names and birthplaces of each individual's parents. Sometimes other information is included such as the names and birthplaces of the bride's and groom's parents, the addresses of the bride and groom, information about previous marriages, and the names of the witnesses to the marriage.

Divorce records usually list the names of the couple's children, names of the individuals seeking the divorce, date of marriage and divorce, and may also include ages and birthdates of the individuals, current residences, and/or the reasons for divorce.

Death certificates often mention where the individual will be buried, place and date where the individual was born, parents names, cause of death, and also give the name of the individual who reported the death.

Vital Records are considered a primary source for genealogical information. They give you the bare facts while other records such as obituary, school, and other records add the spice to family history.

Dale L. Edwards