Mississippi vital records really are a foundation of Mississippi ancestors and family history research simply because they were usually documented at or near the time of the occurrence, helping to make the record more likely to be accurate. This page contains links, information and facts that will help you request copies from Mississippi state and county vital records keepers. Vital records (births, deaths, marriages, and divorces) mark the key events of our lives and are the basis of family history and ancestors research.
Mississippi Vital Records Office, issues, documents, and stores certified copies of vital records including birth, marriage, divorce death certificates for occurrences that took place in Mississippi. To speak to a customer service representative the telephone number is (601) 576-7981.
- Ordering Mississippi Birth and Death Certificates: The State Vital Records Office has birth and death records from November 1, 1912 to present. The fee for a birth or death certified copy is $15, additional copies of same record ordered at same time are $5.00 each. A five year search of records on file will be made. If no record is found, a certification of Not-On-File will be issued. For earlier records, contact the Department of Archives & History.
- Ordering Mississippi Marriage Certificates: The State Vital Records Office has statistical marriage records only from January 1926 to July 1, 1938, and since January 1942. to present. The fee for a marriage certified copy is $15, additional copies of same record ordered at same time are $5 each. Certified marriages may also be obtained from the Circuit Clerk Court in county where license was issued.
- Ordering Mississippi Divorce Certificates: The State Vital Records Office has divorce indexes from January 1926 to present, indexes. The fee for a divorce index search only available at $15 for each 5-year increment. Certified divorce decrees may also be obtained from the Chancery Clerk Court in county where divorce was granted.
How to Order Mississippi Vital Records
- Physical Address: Mississippi Vital Records, State Dept of Health, 571 Stadium Dr., PO Box 1700, Jackson, MS 39215; (601) 576-7960 .
- Mailing Address: Mississippi Vital Records, P.O. Box 1700, Jackson, MS 39215-1700. All mail orders should include a Personal check or money order made payable to Mississippi State Department of Health. Do not send cash.
- Website Address: http://www.msdh.state.ms.us
- Ordering Vital Records Online – get the certificates within 2-5 days with a credit or debit card from USAVital.com or VitalChek.com
- Ordering Vital Records by Mail: You can download an application online for Mississippi Birth Certificate, Marriage Certificate, Death Certificate Applications. Please allow up to 4-6 weeks for processing of all type of certificates ordered through the mail.
Background of Mississippi Vital Records
On November 1, 1912, a law was enacted that required deaths and births to be recorded on the state level. Since that time, the Mississippi State Department of Health, Vital Records has kept those records on file. Their website has a printable form, which must be printed, filled out, and mailed in by researchers requesting information.
Marriage records that were kept by county courthouses can be found on microfilm at the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. Since several courthouses have had fires over the years, many records may be incomplete or missing. Marriages that took place before 1926 have been indexed on the state level according to groom’s name. The marriage date, date that license was obtained, county of licensing, and page and book numbers of records are included in that index.
Certain counties have marriage indexes that are organized according to the name of the bride. From the end of the Civil War onward, separate books were used to record African American marriages. However, researchers would be wise to check all marriage records in the county of interest.
The legislature declared divorce records to be private bills prior to 1859. Index to Session Acts contains references to those records. It is located at the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. The chancery clerk’s office in each county has kept divorce records from 1859 onward. Researchers must search the appropriate county’s records for that information.