15 March 2010

Resource - Kentucky Vital Records Data Base

Spent most of last week & the weekend continuing my prep for the May trip to Kentucky. Mark's family on his mom's side has Kentucky roots, primarily in three counties - Hopkins, Christian & Todd. A few wandered out of those counties and into others, but the majority managed to stick pretty close to that basic 3. Searching for them in Kentucky records has at times been frustrating, mostly due in part to horrid indexing. But other factors also come into play as well.

Might help if there was some consistancy in the records. Most times whene I can not find someone its due to that particular county not having the records for that particular year. Ancestry covers from 1852-1953, but the Kentucky Vital Records project covers basically from 1911 to ? , they accept donations of vital records certificates but also maintain their own death certificate images. They do have some earlier records but it is hit or miss.

Many times I've been able to locate persons on this site that I could not locate on Ancestry. Whether its the indexing or something else I don't know. But when I can not locate on one I always try the other. The Kentucky Vital Records project is staffed by volunteers so they don't do any lookups or offer any genealogical assistance. No fancy bells & whistles - just a good basic genealogy resource for those with ties to the state of Kentucky!

Happy Researching!


Linda McCauley said...

Karen, Ancestry's dates of 1852-1953 for vital records is misleading. 1852 is the earliest date that you might find a birth or death record but no county (as far as I know) has complete records for that entire time period because they simply weren't kept at the time. Most of the Kentucky counties I've dealt with have birth & death records for several years in the 1850's, several years in the 1870's and that's about all until 1911. You will find counties that have more records but it's hit or miss depending on what the individual county recorded and whether or not they've had a courthouse fire.

Better records were kept for marriages so many counties have marriage records starting much earlier than 1852 and covering more years than the births and deaths but again they aren't consistent across the board.

Karen said...

You are correct. Earliest record for a death that I have found on Ancestry's Kentucky deaths was actually a three pack, mom & two daughters, Mom dying in 1853 and then the two daughters both written in, one above her entry & one below her entry with them dying in 1855. Very sporadic to say the least. Thanks for posting!