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Death Record

How might I use the information in this collection?How might I use the information in this collection?

This collection consists of approximately 1.6 million death records created between 1921 and 1952. Records created between 1921 and 1941 include an image of the death certificate. Records from 1942-1952 are index-only. If you’re doing genealogy research, you might use these records to fill in gaps in your family history. You can find out where ancestors are buried, and even where some ancestors are born if they’re listed on a death certificate as someone’s parent. Effective in 1898, the following information was collected on death certificates:

  • Date of death
  • First and last name of deceased
  • ***
  • Color
  • Whether married, single, widowed, or divorced
  • Age in years, months and days
  • Place of death
  • Disease or apparent cause of death
  • Nativity of the deceased
  • Occupation, if over 10 years of age
  • If under that age, the names and residence of the parents, if known
  • Date of record
  • If married, age at first marriage
  • Parent of how many children
  • How many children are living
  • Birthplace (state or country if not born in Michigan)
  • Full names of both parents
  • Birthplaces of both parents
  • Proposed place and time of burial
  • Signature and address of reporter certifying above facts
  • Signature and address of undertaker


If you’re researching broader demographic trends, you might be able to compile statistics based on the information in these records.



Death Record

How do I find things in this collection?How do I find things in this collection?

You can search this collection by last name, first name, county, city/village/township, death year, birth year, an individual’s age at death, and an individual’s father’s first or last name by using the Advanced Search link at the top of any page within Seeking Michigan. Death records will be pre-selected for you. For each field you want to search, you’ll need to choose “all of the words,” “any of the words,” “the exact phrase,” or “none of the words” in the drop-down menu on the left, enter your search term in the text box, and choose the field you want to search from the drop-down menu on the right. Try searching multiple fields to get more focused results. For example, if you add your ancestor’s birth year to a search for his or her name, the results you get are more likely to be what you’re seeking. You can also use the “or” option to search multiple spellings of a name or multiple locations if you’re unsure of where someone died.



Death Record

What's the story behind this collection?What’s the story behind this collection?

Public Act 194 of 1867 required county clerks to file certain facts about all deaths recorded in their counties with the Secretary of State. (The information was later collected by the Department of Public Health and is now collected by the Department of Community Health.)


How might I use the this collection?How might I use the this collection?

This collection consists of approximately 1,000 images of Michigan state census population schedules. The information collected varies by year and location, but only male heads of households and males over the age of 21 were listed by name. Other household members may have been counted, but not named. State census records can be a way to track your ancestors between federal censuses.



How do I find things in this collection?How do I find things in this collection?

You can search by name, county, township, and year by using the advanced search link that appears below the search box at the top of every page within Seeking Michigan. When the advanced search menu opens, you’ll want to uncheck “Death Records, 1897-1920” and click to put a check next to “Michigan State Census Records, 1827-1874.” Once you’ve selected the collection you’re searching, you can enter search terms and add/remove fields using the boxes and drop-down menus. You can search names by entering them as “Last name, First name” and searching the exact phrase or by searching the last name in one box, searching the first name in another box, and selecting “and” from the drop-down menu all the way on the right. If you’re unsure of a spelling or want to search multiple spellings of one name, you can select “or” from the drop-down menu. When your search results appear, you’ll be able to see the county, township, and year for each image. When you click on the thumbnail, you’ll be able to see the names listed.



What's the story behind this collection?What’s the story behind this collection?

The state of Michigan conducted its own regular and special censuses at various times throughout history. This collection of state census records is incomplete because many of the documents have been lost over time. It contains records from the following counties and years:

  • Branch (1857, 1874)
  • Clinton (1864)
  • Eaton (1845, 1854, 1864, 1874)
  • Houghton (1864, 1874)
  • Lenawee (1845)
  • Kalamazoo (1874)
  • St. Joseph (1845)
  • Sanilac (1864)
  • Washtenaw (1827, 1845, 1854)

Two stories are told about why the state’s copies of the schedules no longer exist—they were either donated to a paper drive during World War II or destroyed in a 1951 state office building fire. For a detailed description of Michigan’s censuses and how they were conducted, see LeRoy Barnett’s “Michigan Census Schedules and Records” in Family Trails, volume 5 (http://catalog.lib.msu.edu/record=b4223795~S37a).

We would like to thank the Library of Michigan for loaning us microfilm for scanning.


State Census

How might I use the this collection?How might I use the this collection?

This collection consists of approximately 62,000 images of Michigan state census population schedules. Information collected for each individual may include the following:

  • Name
  • Age
  • ***
  • Color
  • Relationship to the head of the household
  • Marital status
  • Month and place of marriage (if married during that census year)
  • Place of birth
  • Parents’ places of birth
  • Children born to a family during census year
  • Occupation
  • Health status
  • Education
  • Marriages out of a family during the census year
  • Number of years living in Michigan (1884, 1894)
  • Number of years living in the United States (1894)




State Census

How do I find things in this collection?How do I find things in this collection?

Because each image contains information about as many as twenty people, only the name, ***, relationship to the head of the household, age, and line on the record have been indexed for each person. If someone in the household is younger than one year old, his or her age will be listed as a fraction (3/12 for 3 months, for example). The index entries are formatted as illustrated below.

  • Name | *** | Relationship to head of the household | Age | Line on record

In the following example, you would go to line 10 on the image to find additional information about Thomas Sullivon.

  • Sullivon, Thomas | Male | Son | 5 | 10

You can search by name, county, township, and year by using the advanced search link that appears below the search box at the top of every page within Seeking Michigan. When the advanced search menu opens, you’ll want to uncheck “Death Records, 1897-1920” and click to put a check next to “Michigan State Census Records, 1864-1894.”

Once you’ve selected the collection you’re searching, you can enter search terms and add/remove fields using the boxes and drop-down menus. You can search names by entering them as “Last name, First name” and searching the exact phrase or by searching the last name in one box, searching the first name in another box, and selecting “and” from the drop-down menu all the way on the right.

If you’re unsure of a spelling or want to search multiple spellings of one name, you can select “or” from the drop-down menu. When your search results appear, you’ll be able to see the county, township, and year for each image. When you click on the thumbnail, you’ll be able to see the names listed.



State Census

What's the story behind this collection?What’s the story behind this collection?

The state of Michigan conducted its own regular and special censuses at various times throughout history. This collection of state census records is incomplete because many of the documents have been lost over time. It contains records from the following counties and years:

  • Baraga (1884)
  • Barry (1884, 1894)
  • Bay (1884, 1894)
  • Benzie (1884)
  • Gratiot (1894)
  • Hillsdale (1884, 1894)
  • Ingham (1884, 1894)
  • Iosco (1894)
  • Jackson (1884, 1894)
  • Kalamazoo (1884, 1894)
  • Kent (1884, 1894)
  • Keweenaw (1884)
  • Lake (1884)
  • Lapeer (1884, 1894)
  • Lenawee (1884, 1894)
  • Livingston (1894)
  • Menominee (1884, 1894)
  • Midland (1894)
  • Montcalm (1884, 1894)
  • Muskegon (1884, 1894)
  • Newaygo (1884, 1894)
  • Ottawa (1884, 1894)
  • Roscommon (1884)
  • Sanilac (1884, 1894)
  • St. Clair (1884, 1894)
  • St. Joseph (1884, 1894)
  • Washtenaw (1884, 1894)
  • Wayne (1884, excluding Detroit)


Two stories are told about why the state’s copies of the schedules no longer exist—they were either donated to a paper drive during World War II or destroyed in a 1951 state office building fire. For a detailed description of Michigan’s censuses and how they were conducted, see LeRoy Barnett’s “Michigan Census Schedules and Records” in Family Trails, volume 5.

We would like to thank the Library of Michigan and the Burton Historical Collection at the Detroit Public Library for loaning us microfilm for scanning.


Civil War Volunteer Record

How might I use the information in this collection?How might I use the information in this collection?

This collection consists of scanned pages from Record of Service of Michigan Volunteers in the Civil War, which are commonly referred to as the “Brown Books.” These books give a brief outline of a soldier’s service and are the starting point for researching Civil War service records at the Archives of Michigan or on Seeking Michigan. Service records are organized by regiment and not indexed by name, so many researchers begin with the Brown Books when they don’t know the unit in which a soldier served.



Civil War Volunteer Record

How do I find things in this collection?How do I find things in this collection?

You can search the full text of the scanned pages by clicking on the Advanced Search link at the top of any page within Seeking Michigan. Soldiers are listed by last name first and the search does not pick up commas, so you’ll want to select “the exact phrase” from the drop-down menu on the left, enter the soldier’s last name and first name with no comma (“Henderson Samuel,” for example) in the text box, and select “all fields” from the drop-down menu on the right.



Civil War Volunteer Record

What's the story behind this collection?What’s the story behind this collection?

In 1903, the Michigan legislature passed Public Act 147, which assigned the Adjutant General to “prepare for publication an alphabetical regimental history of all soldiers and sailors” from Michigan who fought in the Civil War. The act required that each regiment be given its own volume and that an overall alphabetical index be compiled. The legislature appropriated $22,350 to cover costs of compiling and publishing this work, and publication was completed in 1915.


Death Record

How might I use the information in this collection?How might I use the information in this collection?

This collection consists of nearly one million death records created between 1897 and 1920. If you’re doing genealogy research, you might use these records to fill in gaps in your family history. You can find out where ancestors are buried, and even where some ancestors are born if they’re listed on a death certificate as someone’s parent. Effective in 1898, the following information was collected on death certificates:

  • Date of death
  • First and last name of deceased
  • ***
  • Color
  • Whether married, single, widowed, or divorced
  • Age in years, months and days
  • Place of death
  • Disease or apparent cause of death
  • Nativity of the deceased
  • Occupation, if over 10 years of age
  • If under that age, the names and residence of the parents, if known
  • Date of record
  • If married, age at first marriage
  • Parent of how many children
  • How many children are living
  • Birthplace (state or country if not born in Michigan)
  • Full names of both parents
  • Birthplaces of both parents
  • Proposed place and time of burial
  • Signature and address of reporter certifying above facts
  • Signature and address of undertaker


If you’re researching broader demographic trends, you might be able to compile statistics based on the information in these records.



Death Record

How do I find things in this collection?How do I find things in this collection?

You can search this collection by last name, first name, county, city/village/township, death year, birth year, an individual’s age at death, and an individual’s father’s first or last name by using the Advanced Search link at the top of any page within Seeking Michigan. Death records will be pre-selected for you. For each field you want to search, you’ll need to choose “all of the words,” “any of the words,” “the exact phrase,” or “none of the words” in the drop-down menu on the left, enter your search term in the text box, and choose the field you want to search from the drop-down menu on the right. Try searching multiple fields to get more focused results. For example, if you add your ancestor’s birth year to a search for his or her name, the results you get are more likely to be what you’re seeking. You can also use the “or” option to search multiple spellings of a name or multiple locations if you’re unsure of where someone died.



Death Record

What's the story behind this collection?What’s the story behind this collection?

Public Act 194 of 1867 required county clerks to file certain facts about all deaths recorded in their counties with the Secretary of State. (The information was later collected by the Department of Public Health and is now collected by the Department of Community Health.)


The Archives of Michigan has close to 1,400 Civil War photographs in its collections.

The Main Streets collection depicts street scenes from various towns and cities throughout Michigan. Images of lakes, city parks, buildings, hotels, and nature scenes are also included in the collection.