How to Find Nebraska Death Records

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In 1867, the Territory of Nebraska was admitted to the union as the 37th state. The State began to keep death records in late 1904. Use the following time frame for deciding which resources to consider when trying to locate a death record in Nebraska.

First Step: When did the death occur? [edit | edit source]

Choose a time period to search for your ancestor's death record:

Learn more about U.S. Death Records

Deaths before 1904[edit | edit source]

Nebraska did not begin statewide registration of death records until late 1904, and compliance was not complete for several years.  However, some earlier death records were kept by city health departments.  For example, the city of Omaha has death records from 1873 and the city of Lincoln has death files from 1889.  If your ancestor's death occured in either of these cities contact the respective City Hall and request a search. Addresses are:

Omaha: 1819 Farnam Street, Ste H10, Omaha, NE 68183 

Lincoln: 3140 N St, Lincoln, NE 68510

A few Nebraska counties also began recording deaths before statewide registration.  Contact the county clerk for a record search and to obtain copies. Be aware charges apply whether a record is located or not.  Before requesting a search and paying the fee, contact the county clerk and ask if they have pre-1905 death records.

There are some online death records and indexes at Online Nebraska Death Records and Indexes

Also, consider searching the following substitute records to locate your ancestor’s death date and place.

Records that may give death information:
Nebraska Cemetery Records
Nebraska Newspapers
Nebraska Periodicals
Nebraska Military Records
Nebraska History
Nebraska Church Records
Nebraska Census
Nebraska Bible Records
Nebraska Probate (wills, etc)
Return to top: Choose another death year

Deaths after 1904[edit | edit source]

Nebraska began official death registrations in late 1904. Complete compliance did not occur until several years later. Records after 1904 are held at the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services. Some death record indexes are available for this time period.  Follow both steps below to find the death record; first locate the death date in an index and using the information order the death certificate from the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.

STEP ONE: Search for Death Information Online[edit | edit source]

For deaths during this time period, try the following databases. Try each link.

Nebraska Deaths Databases - may include Index and/or Digital Images

1904-1955 at Ancestry ($) Index

Online Nebraska Death Records and Index Free Online death information from cemeteries and obituaries. Varies by county and year.

US Death and Burials 1867-1961 Free United States Deaths and Burials 1867-1961 Very few records for Nebraska

Can't find your ancestor in the online index?

Tips for Searching an Online Index

No death record for your ancestor?

Other records with death information

STEP TWO: Obtain the Certificate[edit | edit source]

To order a death certificate from the state office, click on the following link to obtain information including: current cost, address and other requirements for requesting a copy of a death certificate from the State of Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.

There may be some restrictions.  You have to meet the proper purpose before applying for a copy of a death certificate.

Restrictions for obtaining death records:

A legal copy of a death certificate cannot be issued without PDF proper purpose. You may get a death certificate for your spouse, your parent, or your child.
Be sure that you meet the above proper purpose before applying for a copy of a death certificate (a request by spouse, parent, next of kin or legal representative of deceased). The fee for the search will be kept if no record is found or the right person has not asked for the record. You will be notified in writing if no record is found or the proper purpose has not been met.

If you do not want to order the death record, you can search the other records with death information to see what you can find.

Return to top: Choose another death year

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