Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Vital Records: Marriage, Birth, & Death: Overview



The Minnesota Historical Society has a vast collection of state and local government records including Minnesota marriage, birth and death records. Marriage records began in the 1850s and birth/death records in 1870 for counties formed by then. The Library's collections of vital records vary by county and years covered. 

If the Library does not have vital records for the time period or area needed other resources may be searched. Religious records (for baptism, marriage and death information), obituaries (birth information is sometimes included), and census records may provide some or all of this information.   

The Library does not provide certified copies of vital records. Certified records may be requested from the Vital Statistics Registrar at a local county office or from the Minnesota Department of Health

The purpose of this guide is to introduce the death, birth, and marriage records in our collections and how to access these records.  

Research Options

Related Research Guides & Webpages

Guide Author

Jackie Beckey
Reference Librarian 

Gale Family Library • Minnesota Historical Society • 345 W. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55102-1906 • 651-259-3300
Currently open by appointment only.