PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS SERVICE WAS DISCONTINUED BY FAMILY SEARCH - EFFECTIVE DECEMBER 5, 2014. YOU CAN READ ABOUT IT IN THIS POST
You know what they say “you learn or should learn something new every day.” Well, count this day a success as I’ve learned about a really wonderful source for getting copies of records that you cannot get online.
I belong to several Facebook groups for genealogy. I’ve written about the incredible advantages to belonging to these groups/pages on Facebook and this is another great example. Here is a link to my post - Facebook - How it can be very useful in your research
Not too long ago Deidre Erin Denton, mentioned, on the Detroit Genealogy Facebook page, that she had just received 5 records she had requested via Family Search. I thought to myself “I didn’t know you could do that.” Apparently, you can request up to 5 records per month. And the best thing – it’s FREE! Thanks for the info Deidre.
Today, on the same Detroit Genealogy page I was bemoaning the fact that we don’t have images for the Michigan Death Certificates 1921-1952. I’m thankful to have the indexed transcriptions, don’t get me wrong. But, you know how it is. You want to see the actual document.
Another nice member of the group (thank you Nancy) reminded me that you can request photo duplications of the certificates or any other record not available online or in a book.
I decided today was the day and I have completed submission of requests for 5 death certificates I’ve been wanting. I’ll walk you through the process, which is very easy. This process can be used for records from anywhere, any state etc. Here is a link to the page on Family Search that explains the criteria - Photoduplication Services on familysearch.org
You can read for yourself to see if the record you may be wanting will qualify.
I knew that the records I wanted were from the Michigan Death Certificates, 1921-1952. I also knew that those images were not yet online and, to my knowledge, not in any book.
Let’s walk through the process.
NOTE: I have received several comments via Facebook and this blog, regarding the death certificates for Michigan. Some people say that the 75 year rule for privacy will only allow them to release images of deaths prior to 1939. Others say they have received later years. Please be aware of this when you are ordering Michigan Death Certificates and probably any other vital records from other states.
Also, be aware that the Seeking Michigan site is scheduled to release the images for the Michigan Death Certificates 1921-1952, some time this year. Will they release images for all of them or only up to 1938? I don't know the answer to that at this time.
Once you are on the Photoduplication Services page click on the green icon that says Photo Duplication Request Form.
(Click on any image to enlarge it)
What you will see next is the actual form for you to fill out. You don’t even have to print it, you can just fill it out right online and submit it from there. I always appreciate that.
When you find a record on Family Search you see the indexed transcription. Sometimes there is a little camera indicating there is also an image for that record. In the case of the Michigan Death Certificates, 1921-1952, there is no little camera. However, I had already copied the indexed information from the records I was looking for, into my Legacy database.
It’s in that indexed information that you will find the Microfilm number and other information you need in order to complete this form.
Here is what I have from the index for my grand aunt, Ellen Pickard. I have indicated in RED the items that I need from this text to fill out the request form.
NOTE: The numbers I am using (ie. GS, Digital Folder etc.) may not be the same ones you have on whatever record you are trying to request. I would just fill in whatever you can.
Michigan, Death Certificates, 1921-1952
Name: Ellen Pickard
Event Date: 31 Mar 1927
Event Place: Detroit, Wayne, Michigan, United States
Marital Status: Married
Birth Date: 01 Apr 1887
Birthplace: Detroit, Michigan
Birth Year (Estimated): 1888
Father's Name: Wm Lindsay
GS Film number: 001972982
Digital Folder Number: 005362579
Image Number: 02341
Here is a copy of the completed form, highlighting certain areas. I’ve left my personal information out, but, please remember to fill it in when you submit your form.
TIP: I didn’t see an item number or call number in the indexed text, so I submitted the Digital Folder No. instead. In the space where they ask for Title of record or book and name of parents. I learned, after my first couple of submissions, that you can put more in that box than just what fits in the space. I wanted you to see what I submitted so I made a box below the entry area for demonstration purposes. I didn’t have a page or item number so in that box, I submitted the image number.
Now, just click on submit request and you’re done.
They say it can take 4-6 weeks. I’ll be waiting………………
HOW DID I KEEP TRACK OF THE RECORDS I REQUESTED?
In my Legacy 8 database for each individual I made a note of the date & what I had done. To learn more about Legacy 8, please click on the Legacy icon on the top right of this blog page.
Here is a screenshot of Ellen Lindsay’s Individual Information.
I will click on the plus sign (+) for death notes. You can see that I copied and pasted the index information from Family Search for the Michigan Death Certificates, 1921-1952 for Ellen Pickard. And, you can see my note about submitting the photo duplication request.
NOW I WILL MAKE A NOTE IN EVERNOTE FOR ALL THE REQUESTS I SUBMITTED.
This will allow me to keep track of every request I submit and I can even set a reminder in Evernote to tell me when I might start expecting to see the records in my email. I can also find this note easily (in case I forget where I’ve filed it) because Evernote has such incredible search capabilities. For more information about the use of Evernote for your genealogy research please see my post Evernote - A Very Useful and Free Tool to Help You Organize Your Genealogy and Everything Else
Now the waiting begins. I will let you know when I receive the records. Will they send me all 5 of them? Did I give them all the correct information?
READ THIS POST TO FIND OUT THE ANSWERS
FOLLOW UP TO PHOTO DUPLICATION REQUESTS
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