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Which Chicago Vital Records are Available on FamilySearch?

Visit a Family History Center to access the Chicago and
Cook County vital records. Find your local FHC here.
In the days to come, I'll be exploring the Chicago vital records that are newly available on FamilySearch (to those who visit a family history center or a FamilySearch affiliate library) and, in preparation for that, I felt like I needed to see what was there. So, I made the list that you'll find below. And, if you'd like a copy for reference, you can download/print from here.

Here are a few quick observations:

  • All of the birth records on microfilm have been digitized and made available for viewing except for three Cook County birth registers (which in most cases aren't needed anyway).
  • Marriage licenses look to be complete, 1871-1941. (Great news, right?!) 
  • I was surprised to see the Chicago death certificates, 1916-1945, haven't been made available but I'm thrilled to see the earlier records.
  • Now that the coroner's death certificates have been digitized, I would love, love, love to participate in a project to index them. Some of the records on those films are so badly out of order that it's unlikely they could be found without a ridiculous amount of time and effort.
  • Indexing has opened up access to some filmed records, like delayed birth certificates, that were previously unindexed and difficult to search. That's great news!
  • It appears that 1940/1941 is the cutoff for newly added records that have been digitized from original records. If you discover differently, will you let me know?
  • There are numerous indexes to these records, film, fiche, and online, available for these records. Any of them can be used as a starting point, but I think, going forward, I'll start with the FamilySearch indexes first.
If you use Chicago vital records in your research, please check back in a few days. I'll be posting more information about some of the unique record groups--out-of-town death certificates, for example--and I'll add some video tutorials on how to use Family History Library Catalog information to easily access these records.

BIRTHS

*Chicago birth certificates, 1878-1922
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/229686

*Cook County birth certificates, 1878-1894
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/256592

*Cook County birth certificates, 1916-1922
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/258450

*Chicago birth registers, 1871-1915
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/260525

*Registers of births outside of the city [Chicago], 1878-1894
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/290932
[1878-1885; 3 films not yet included]

Chicago, birth records, 1871-1978
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/2327154
[Delayed birth certificates, 1917-1940; birth certificates, 1923-1939; birth affidavits, 1920-1926] 

Cook County birth records, 1888-2006
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/2296659 
[Birth certificates, 1923-1941; delayed series, 1917-1940; stillbirths, 1928-1942]

*Birth corrections and delayed births, 1916-1918
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/264466 

*Chicago birth corrections and indexes, 1871-1915;
unrelated, actual birth records, 1870s to 1940s
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/263721

MARRIAGES

*Marriage licenses, 1871-1920; index, 1871-1916
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/43803

Cook County marriage records, 1920-1959
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/2620697 
[1920-1941]

 DEATHS

*Chicago death certificates, 1878-1915
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/42925

*Chicago death certificates, 1916-1922
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/394759

*Chicago death certificates, 1916-1945
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/628228 
[not available as digital images]

Chicago death records, 1909-1994
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/2305942
[Death certificates, 1921-1938; stillbirths, 1909-1941]

*Cook County death certificates, 1878-1909, 1916-1922
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/88896 

*Coroners death certificates, 1879-1904
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/89876

*Out of town deaths, 1909-1915
https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/280109

INDEXES

Cook County Birth Certificates, 1871-1940
https://www.familysearch.org/search/collection/1462519

Cook County Birth Registers, 1871-1915
https://www.familysearch.org/search/collection/1463129

Cook County, Birth Certificates, 1871-1940
https://www.familysearch.org/search/collection/1462519 

Cook County Birth Registers, 1871-1915
https://www.familysearch.org/search/collection/1463129

Cook County Marriages, 1871-1920
https://www.familysearch.org/search/collection/1463145

Cook County Deaths, 1878-1994
https://www.familysearch.org/search/collection/1463134

Record groups marked with an asterisk have been digitized from the Family History Library films.

“Illinois” and “Cook County” were removed from titles when unnecessary.

Comments

Anonymous said…
I was able to access some death certificates as recent as 1994. I couldn't find everything I looked for, but some of them are online.
Larry said…
Since this post was written, three more years of Chicago death certificate images (not stillbirths) have been added to "Chicago, Death Records, 1909-1994". Those years are 1939, 1940 and 1941. So now the years run from 1921 through 1941.

https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/2305942?availability=Family%20History%20Library

Thanks, Cynthia, for all of your very detailed information. Since I found your blog a week ago, I went to the FHC 10 miles from home, and have copied about 60 BMD document images!
Larry said…
Cynthia, can you edit the other message I submitted to this post? Change 1941 to 1948. And change "there years have been added" to "10 years have been added".

Larry Parker
Cyndy said…
It's very hard to keep up with the changes. Thanks for the updates. I appreciate them! And hooray for your success in locating all those records!

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