California Death Index 1940-1997 - FamilySearch Historical Records

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California, Death Index, 1940-1997
CID2015582
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
California, 
United States
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Flag of California
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Location of California
Record Description
Record Type Death Index
Collection years 1940-1997
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites


What is in the Collection?[edit | edit source]

This collection consists of a name index of death records for the years 1940 to 1997. The index was created by the California Department of Health Services, Vital Statistics Section in Sacramento.

What Can These Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]

The index includes the following:

  • Name
  • Sex
  • Date and place of birth
  • Date and place of death
  • Father's last name
  • Mother's maiden name

How Do I Search The Collection?[edit | edit source]

To begin your search it is helpful to know at least some of the following:

  • The name of your ancestor.
  • The date and place of death.

Search the Index[edit | edit source]

Search by name by visiting the Collection Details Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes in the Search Collection section with the information you know
  2. Click Search to show possible matches


How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images.

For more tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line article FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.

What Do I Do Next?[edit | edit source]

I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Copy the citation below, in case you need to find this record again later.
  • Use the age or estimated birth date to determine an approximate birth date to find other church and vital records such as birth, baptism, and marriage records.
  • Use the information found in the record to find land, probate and immigration records.
  • Use the information found in the record to find additional family members in censuses.
  • Repeat this process with additional family members found, to find more generations of the family.
  • Church Records were kept years before counties began keeping records. They are a good source for finding ancestors before 1900.


I Can’t Find Who I’m Looking for, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • If your ancestor does not have a common name, collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This list can help you find possible relatives.
  • If you cannot locate your ancestor in the locality in which you believe they lived, then try searching records of a nearby town or county.
  • Try different spellings of your ancestor’s name.
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names. Try searching for these names as well.
  • Check the info box above for additional FamilySearch websites and related websites that may assist you in finding similar records.

Citing this Collection[edit | edit source]

Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.


Collection Citation:

Collection Citation:
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.

Record Citation (or citation for the index entry):

When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for California, Death Index, 1940-1997.


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How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?[edit | edit source]

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Historical Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.