Source Information

Ancestry.com. Idaho, Death Index, 1890-1964 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2003.
Original data: Bureau of Health Policy and Vital Statistics. Idaho Death Index, 1911-51. Boise, ID, USA: Idaho Department of Health and Welfare.

About Idaho, Death Index, 1890-1964

This database is an index to the death records of the state of Idaho for the years 1890-1964. In addition to providing the name of the deceased, the index provides the date and place of death, the deceased's birth date, and their death certificate number. With the information provided in this index you may be able to obtain a death certificate. Death certificates can be very valuable because of the amount of information they may provide (see extended description).

The registration of births and deaths on the county level in Idaho was not required until 1907. Prior to that time, the only birth and death records were kept by the churches, midwives, mortuaries, and physicians. These records are fragmentary at best.

Beginning in 1907 the state of Idaho required that professional midwives and physicians record births. The registration of deaths was the responsibility of any clergyman, coroner, physician, or undertaker who had cared for the deceased during the last sickness or made arrangements for the burial. This information was reported to the county recorder. The law governing the registration of births and deaths was changed in 1911, at which time the county recorder was relieved of this responsibility. After 1911 all births and deaths were registered directly with the state. These certificates can be obtained by contacting: the Vital Statistics Unit, Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, 450 West State Street, Statehouse Mall, Boise, Idaho 83720-9990.

Taken from Idaho, Ancestry's Red Book by Dwight A. Radford, edited by Alice Eichholz. (Salt Lake City, UT: Ancestry Incorporated, 1992).

Modern (post-1910) death records, though comparatively recent, are steadily increasing in value. People are living longer, and death records often provide information about birth as well as death.

Modern death certificates have not been standardized throughout the United States; but, like birth certificates, most of them contain the same types of information. Most contemporary death certificates include the deceased's name, sex, race, date of death, age at the time of death, place of death, date of birth, place of birth, marital status, name of spouse, Social Security number, occupation, residence, father's name, mother's name, cause of death, and place of burial. Records from some states provide the birthplace of the deceased's parents. The Social Security number is not always included, but, when it is, it can be invaluable because other records (subject to right-of-privacy laws) may be accessible if you have the Social Security number.

As any experienced researcher knows, death records are only as accurate as the knowledge of the person who provided the information. Many informants are unaware of the name of parents or are unsure about dates and places of birth. Always try to find additional information about parents and dates and places of birth whenever possible.

Taken from Chapter 3: Research in Birth, Death, and Cemetery Records, The Source: A Guidebook of American Genealogy by Johni Cerny; edited by Loretto Dennis Szucs and Sandra Hargreaves Luebking (Salt Lake City, UT: Ancestry Incorporated, 1997).