How to order Missouri Vital Records

Missouri Birth, Marriage, Divorce along with Death records, generally known as vital records, produce details about significant occasions in your ancestors life. Vital records, typically kept by a civic authority, can give people a much more complete picture of your ancestor, assist you to differentiate concerning two people utilizing the identical name, and help you uncover links to a completely new generation. They could include information like the occasion date and place, parents’ names, profession and residence. The cause of death is also listed in the majority of Missouri death records.

Missouri vital records certainly are a basis of Missouri ancestors and family history research simply because they were usually recorded at or close to the time of the event, helping to make the record more likely to be accurate. This webpage contains links, details that can help you obtain copies from Missouri state and county vital records keepers. Vital records (births, deaths, marriages, and divorces) mark the key events of our lives and are the framework of genealogy research.

Missouri Vital Records Office, issues, documents, and stores certified copies of vital records including birth, marriage, divorce death certificates for occurrences that took place in Missouri.  To speak to a customer service representative the telephone number is (573) 751-6387.

  • Ordering Missouri Birth and Death Certificates: The State Vital Records Office has birth and death records from January 1910 to present. The fee for a birth certified copy is $15 and death certified copy is $13. Certified copies of most Missouri birth and death records are also available from local county health department. Records before 1906 should be in County Clerks office of the county where event occurred.  If event occurred in St. Louis (City), St. Louis County, or Kansas City before 1910, write to the city or county Health Department.
  • Ordering Missouri Marriage Certificates: The State Vital Records Office has marriage records from July 1948 to present. The fee for a marriage certified copy is $15. Certified copies of Missouri marriage records are also available from the county recorder of deeds in which the marriage occurred.
  • Ordering Missouri Divorce Certificates: The State Vital Records Office has divorce records from July 1948 to present. The fee for a divorce certified copy is $15. Certified copies of Missouri divorce records are also available from the county recorder of deeds in which the divorce occurred.

How to Order Missouri Vital Records

  • Physical Address: Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, Bureau of Vital Records, Jefferson City, MO 65102, Telephone: 573-751-6387 .
  • Mailing Address: Missouri Vital Records, P.O. Box 570, Jefferson City, MO 65102. All mail orders should include a Personal check or money order made payable to Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. Do not send cash.
  • Website Address: www.health.mo.gov/
  • Ordering Vital Records Online - get the certificates within 2-5 days with a credit or debit card from USAVital.com or VitalChek.com
  • Ordering Vital Records by Mail: You can download an application online for Missouri Birth and Death CertificateMarriage and Divorce Certificate Applications. Please allow up to 4-6 weeks for processing of all type of certificates ordered through the mail.

Background of Missouri Vital Records

On August 16, 1909, Missouri began requiring vital records to be filed on the state level. The Missouri Department of Health, Bureau of Vital Records holds the records from that date onward. The bureau’s website has death and birth certificate request applications available for download.

In 1863, a non-compulsory birth registration law was passed. At that time, the recorder of deeds in each county was authorized to record births when such a recording was requested. The marriage or regular deed books for each county hold those records, but they are not indexed, and they are also incomplete.

From 1850 to 1910, deaths were recorded in St. Louis. That city also began recording births on July 12, 1870. That practice continued until 1910. However, only an estimated 60% of deaths and births were recorded during those years. The death and birth registers for St. Louis from that time period can be found on microfilm at the Missouri State Archives. Researchers should right to St. Louis City Vital Records/Recorder of Deeds, City Hall in order to request certified copies of death and birth certificates from 1870 onward.

As of 1883, it was required that each county record both deaths and births in Missouri. However, the law was repealed in 1893. During that 10-year span, compliance with the law was sporadic. The registers are available in most county offices, but no two counties are identical as far as thoroughness or recording methods.

There is currently a Missouri Birth and Death Record Database project underway. It is run by volunteers who collect records of stillbirths, births, and deaths. They then organize those records on the Internet. Many of those same records can also be accessed through the Salt Lake City Family History Library (FHL) and the Missouri State Archives.

Some Missouri vital records have been abstracted or indexed on the Ancestry.com website. Those records include the 1850 to 1908 death records for St. Louis, Missouri. The FHL and the Missouri State Archives also have many of those vital records on microfilm.

The county recorder of deeds keeps the marriage records for each county. Marriage licenses in Missouri were not required until June 26, 1881. Prior to that, any courthouse could record a marriage.

The circuit court clerk of the county holds records of divorce. The exception to that is the records for St. Louis. They can be found at the Civil Records Department, Jackson County Courthouse in Kansas City, as well as at the City Circuit Court Clerk, Civil Courts Building in St. Louis. Marriage dissolution statements from July 1, 1948 to now can be obtained from the Bureau of Vital Records for a small fee. A basic search includes a 5-year time period. The website for the bureau gives more information. The associated circuit clerk office or recorder of deeds are the only places where certified divorce and marriage records can be obtained.

Searchable Missouri Databases and other Helpful Links

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