Delaware Vital Record Index Cards (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Delaware
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Delaware, Vital Record Index Cards, 1680-1934 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Delaware, United States
Delaware flag.png
Flag of Delaware
US Locator Delaware.png
Location of Delaware
Record Description
Record Type Vital Records
Collection years 1680-1934
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites


What is in This Collection?

This collection of vital record index cards covers the years 1680 to 1934, held by the Delaware State Archives Hall of Records in Dover, Delaware.

Statewide registration of births began in 1861, was discontinued in 1863, resumed in 1881, and was generally complied with by 1921. Delaware counties began keeping marriage records as early as 1832. These records have been transferred from the counties to the Delaware Public Archives. These early county marriage records are not available at the Family History Library; however, the library has records of some pre-1847 marriage bonds. State registration of marriages began in 1847 and was generally complied with by 1913. The Family History Library has microfilm copies of the marriage bonds for 1744-1836 and 1855-1861, and licenses for 1889-1894. You can obtain marriage records for the most recent 40 years by writing to the Bureau of Vital Statistics. For marriages recorded more than 40 years ago, contact the Delaware Public Archives. To see a coverage map of FamilySearch's holdings of Delaware marriages, click here.

Marriages of Delaware residents may also be recorded in adjoining states, such as Pennsylvania and Maryland.

Although some deaths were recorded as early as 1855, state registration of deaths officially began in 1881 and was generally complied with by 1890.

The Delaware Bureau of Vital Statistics has death records for the most recent 40 years. For deaths recorded over forty years ago, contact the Delaware Public Archives. Birth and deaths were recorded to better serve public health needs.

Counties in Delaware recorded marriages to safeguard the interests of the wife and other legal heirs by documenting marriages and property ownership.

Vital records are considered to be primary source records. Information in these records is usually reliable, depending on the knowledge of the informant. For example, a coroner would be able to give reliable information about the date, time and cause of death, but might not know personal details about the deceased.

To Browse This Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Delaware Vital Record Index Cards, 1680-1934.

Collection Content

Coverage Map

To see a coverage map of FamilySearch's holdings of Delaware marriages, click here.

Sample Image

What Can These Records Tell Me?

The following may be found in birth records:

  • Child’s name
  • Child’s sex
  • Birth date
  • Birth place
  • Registration date
  • Race
  • Parents' names
  • Parents' residence
  • Father’s occupation
  • Parents' birth places

The following may be found in marriage records:

  • Full name of bride and groom
  • Marriage date
  • Marriage place
  • Residence of bride and groom
  • Age of bride and groom
  • Groom’s occupation
  • Birth place of bride and groom
  • Parents of bride and groom
  • What number of marriage for bride and groom
  • Officiator

The following may be found in death records:

  • Name of deceased
  • Death date
  • Death place
  • Age in days, months, and years
  • Marital status
  • Cause of death
  • Occupation
  • Birth place
  • Name of parents
  • Social Security number
  • Birth date
  • Military service
  • Surviving spouse
  • Race
  • Education
  • Residence
  • Parents' names
  • Informants' names
  • Informants' residence

Burial or removal records may contain:

  • Name of person certificate is issued to
  • County
  • City or town
  • Death date
  • Name of deceased
  • Age of deceased
  • Cause of death
  • Medical attendant
  • Purposed date of burial or removal
  • Purposed place of burial or removal
  • Undertaker
  • Undertaker’s address
  • Name and title of person issuing permit
  • Permit date

How Do I Search This Collection?

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

  • The name of the individual or individuals
  • The approximate date and place of the event

View the Images

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:

  • Select the Index Title and Date Range to view the images.

How Do I Analyze the Results?

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next?

When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors.

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?

  • Use the birth dates or ages to find a couple's birth records
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth to find the family in census records
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate church and land records
  • Use the parents' birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family
  • Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment or military records
  • The name of the officiator may be a clue to their religion
  • The name of the undertaker or mortuary could lead you to funeral and cemetery records.

I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking For, What Now?

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties

Citing This Collection

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation

"Delaware Vital Record Index Cards, 1680-1934." Images. FamilySearc. http://FamilySearch.org : 14 June 2016. Citing Bureau of Vital Statistics. Hall of Records, Dover.

Image Citation:
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.

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