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Michigan County Births (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Michigan, County Births, 1867-1917
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Michigan, United States
Michigan flag.png
Flag of Michigan
US Locator Michigan.png
Location of Michigan
Record Description
Record Type Births
Collection years 1867-1917
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
Various county courts, Michigan


What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]

The collection consists of images of county birth records from 53 of the 83 county courthouses in Michigan. Some of the records are "delayed births" which were recorded years after the actual birth. The time period varies by county, but generally covers the years 1867 to 1917.

Clerks of each County Court recorded births that were reported by parents, doctors and midwives beginning in 1867. This information was then sent to the secretary of the state. From 1867 to 1879, about 15% to 20% of the births were recorded; from 1880-1902, coverage increased to about 60% to 70%. The state required counties to begin recording births to document the occurrence of a birth and to track public health issues.

To Browse This Collection[edit | edit source]

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Michigan, County Births, 1867-1917.

What Can These Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]

The following information may be found in these records:

Birth / Christening

  • Name of the child
  • Gender
  • Names of the parents
  • Birth date
  • Birthplace
  • Race
  • Christening date (if the source is a church record)
  • Family History Library Microfilm and item numbers for the source materials

Collection Content[edit | edit source]

Sample Image[edit | edit source]

Coverage Table and Map[edit | edit source]

Details on the number of records available by county, and number of records per year are available at Michigan, County Births, 1867-1917.

How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

  • The name of your ancestor
  • The county your ancestor resided in
  • The names of family members and their approximate ages

Search the Index[edit | edit source]

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

View the Images[edit | edit source]

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:

  1. Select the County
  2. Select the Record Type, Date Range and Volume to view the images.

How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]

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.

What Do I Do Next?[edit | edit source]

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Use the age or estimated birth date to find other church and vital records such as baptism, marriage, and death records
  • Use the information found in the record to find land, probate and immigration records
  • Use the information found in the record to find additional family members in censuses. Witnesses were usually family members
  • Repeat this process with additional family members found, to find more generations of the family
  • Church Records were kept years before counties began keeping records. They are a good source for finding ancestors before 1900

I Can't Find the Person I'm Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • If your ancestor does not have a common name, collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This list can help you find possible relatives
  • If you cannot locate your ancestor in the locality in which you believe they lived, then try searching records of a nearby town or county
  • Try different spellings of your ancestor’s name
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names. Try searching for these names as well

Research Helps[edit | edit source]

The following articles will help you in your research for your family in the state of Michigan.

Citing This Collection[edit | edit source]

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:
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details page in the section Citing this Collection.
Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record.
Image Citation:
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.

How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?[edit | edit source]

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

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