Massachusetts Death Index (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Massachusetts, Death Index, 1970-2003 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Massachusetts, United States
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Flag of Massachusetts
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Location of Massachusetts
Record Description
Record Type Death Index
Collection years 1970-2003
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites


What is in This Collection?

This collection includes records from 1970 to 2003.
The collection consists of indexes to deaths from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Health Services in Boston. The index is provided by Ancestry.com.

What Can These Records Tell Me?

The index lists the following information:

  • Age at Death
  • Estimated Birth Year
  • DGS Number
  • Date of Death
  • Certificate Number or page number
  • GSU Film Number
  • Image number
  • Name of Deceased
  • Name of Father
  • Name of Mother
  • Name of Spouse
  • Place of Death
  • Sex
  • Page Number

How Do I Search This Collection?

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

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

Search the Index

Search by name by visiting the Collection Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes on the Collection Page with the information you have
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

Keep in mind:

  • There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.
  • Your ancestor may have used different names, or variations of their name, throughout their life.
  • If your ancestor used an alias or a nickname, be sure to check for those alternate names.
  • Even though these indexes are very accurate they may still contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.

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?

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

  • Continue to search the index and records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have served in the same unit or a nearby unit.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • You may need to compare the information of more than one family or person to make this determination.
  • Be aware that, as with any index, transcription errors may occur.

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

  • Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for nicknames and abbreviated names.
  • Look for another index. Local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.
  • Try alternative search methods such as only filling in the surname search box (or the given name search box) on the landing page leaving the other box empty and then click on search. This should return a list of everyone with that particular name. You could then browse the list for individuals that may be your ancestor.

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

"Massachusetts Death Index, 1970-2003." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : 14 June 2016. From "Massachusetts Death Index, 1970-2003." Database. Ancestry. http://www.ancestry.com : 2005. Citing Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Health Services, Boston.

Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record.

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How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?

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Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.