Utah, Salt Lake County Birth Registers (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.
Access the records: Utah, Salt Lake County, Birth Registers, 1890-1915 .

Record Description

Before 1908, entries were made in registers that were divided into columns and rows. Beginning in 1908, entries were made on printed certificates, with four per page. Separate books were kept for Salt Lake City and the rest of the county, although many county entries were recorded in the city books and vice versa. It is not known if these are duplicate entries.

While the state of Utah did not require births be registered until 1905, Salt Lake County started much earlier. Early years record as little as 20% of the births; later years closer to 80% of the births. 

Salt Lake County began registering births in 1890. Separate books for kept for deaths in Salt Lake City and for the rest of the county. Beginning in 1905, the Utah State Board of Health required county Board of Health registrars to record all births occurring in their county. Physicians, midwives, and birthing facilities were all responsible to supply this information. County officials sent certificates each month to the state registrar at the Department of Vital Statistics. 

This collection includes births for the years 1890 to 1915. 

Births were recorded for public health purposes. Birth certificates were also issued to individuals as legal documents. In cases where an individual’s birth had not been recorded, it was not uncommon for that individual to apply for a delayed birth registration since the certificate was needed to receive certain government benefits.

The information in birth entries is generally reliable, although there is always a chance for error.

Citation for This Collection

The following citation refers to the original source of the data and images published on FamilySearch.org Historical Records. It may include the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records.

County Clerk. Utah, Salt Lake County, Salt Lake City, birth records. Salt Lake County Records Manager and Archive, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Record Content

Birth records contain some or all of the following genealogical information, depending on the time period:

  • Name of child
  • Child's birth date
  • Birthplace
  • Gender
  • Race
  • Father's name
  • Father's age
  • Father’s birthplace
  • Father’s occupation
  • Father’s residence
  • Mother's maiden name
  • Mother’s age
  • Mother’s birthplace
  • Mother’s occupation
  • Mother’s residence
  • Whether a twin, triplet, or other multiple birth
  • Whether a legitimate birth
  • Birth order (number of children born to this mother)
  • Number of children born to this mother who are still living

How to Use the Record

Begin your search by finding your ancestors in the index. Use the locator information in the index (such as page, entry, or certificate number) to locate your ancestors in the birth records. Compare the information in the birth record to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct person. You may need to compare the information of more than one person to make this determination. Be aware that as with any index, transcription errors may occur.

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

For example:

  • Use the birth date 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.
  • The father’s occupation can lead you to other types of records such as employment records or military records.
  • The parents’ birth places can tell you former residences and can help to establish a migration pattern for the family.

It is often helpful to extract the information on all children with the same parents. If the surname is unusual, you may want to compile birth entries for every person of the same surname and sort them into families based on the names of the parents. Continue to search the birth records to identify siblings, parents, and other relatives in the same or other generations who were born in the same county or nearby.

Keep in mind:

  • The information in birth records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.
  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1800s.
  • There is also some variation in the information given from record to record.

Related Websites

Salt Lake Valley Health Department

Related Wiki Articles

Contributions to this Article

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.

Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

When you copy information from the record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you do not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.

A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the wiki article Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.

Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection

"Utah, Salt Lake County Birth Records, 1890-1915" index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org: accessed 1 February 2012).  George Benjamin Andrews,  21 January 1894; citing County Records, FHL miclrfilm line 2,215: Salt Lake County Record Managemant and Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah, United States.