Vital records

Vital Records in the Missouri Valley Room

Missouri Vital Records

The first provision for state-wide registration of births and deaths was enacted July 1, 1883, and was repealed in 1893. Registration ceased until 1910. The Missouri State Archives maintains a searchable database of birth and death records prior to 1910 and post 1910 to 1957.

The Missouri Department of Health, Bureau of Vital Records provides information about birth, death, marriage, and divorce records for Missouri and how to obtain certified copies.

For Jackson County, birth records may be obtained from:

The Bureau of Vital Records
P.O. Box 570
Jefferson City, MO 65102
(573) 751-6400

If you were born in the State of Missouri after 1920, birth certificates are also available at the Jackson County Health Department in Independence, Missouri, located at 313 S. Liberty. For directions and pricing information call the Health Department at (816) 404-6415.

If you were born in Kansas City, Missouri, a copy of your birth certificate is available from:

Vital Records
2400 Troost, Suite 1200
Kansas City, MO 64108
(816) 513-6309

Death Records

The Missouri Valley Room has death records from the Office of Vital Statistics, Kansas City Health Department for Kansas City, Missouri, covering the period August 3, 1874, through December 31, 1909.

These records list the following:

Name of deceased
Race
Date of Death
Nativity
Place of Death
Age
Civil Condition (i.e., married or single)
Sex
Cause of Death
Name of Physician

In addition, there is a set of records commonly referred to as "The Dead People Files." These are records from the Kansas City Health Department's Office of Vital Statistics, dating from ca.1910 through ca.1985. They provide data about persons who died outside of Kansas City but were buried here. The specific information includes:

Name
Place of Death
Cause of Death
Date of Death
Age
Race
Funeral Home
Disposition/Burial Place

Death records on microfilm in the Missouri Valley Room from the Missouri State Archives include (some overlap):

1883 through 1893 (Register of Deaths, Jackson County)
1884 through 1890 (Permanent Record of Deaths)

Birth Records

Birth records for Jackson County on microfilm from the Missouri State Archives include (some overlap):

1883 through 1888 (Permanent Record of Births)
1883 through 1895 (Permanent Record of Births, followed by stillbirths)
1889 through 1890 (Permanent Record of Births)

Selected nineteenth-century birth and death information for other counties may be found by searching the Library's online catalog using the county name and birth or death in the search box.

Marriage Records

Jackson County Department of Records has a searchable database of marriages for the county. If the person your searching is not found in the database, and you know they were married in Jackson County, the license may have been purchased in a different Missouri county, and therefore will not be in this database.

Indexes to Jackson County marriage records in the Missouri Valley Room from the Missouri State Archives (on microfilm) include:

1827 through 1937 (Index to Jackson County Marriages at Independence, brides and grooms)
1881 through 1937 (Index to Jackson County Marriages at Kansas City, brides and grooms)

Divorce Records

For divorce records in Jackson County, one must write for the records – there is no online searching. Call 816-881-3913 for current fees.

Judicial Records Department
Jackson County Courthouse
415 East 12th Street
Kansas City, MO 64106