Thursday, February 21, 2013

1962 Vital Records now available…

The Tennessee State Library and Archives recently received death, marriage and divorce records from the year 1962 to add to its research collections. These records, confidential for 50 years, were just released by the Department of Vital Statistics. Birth records from 1912, confidential for 100 years, have also been released.

1962 Certificate of Death
Tennessee did not begin collecting birth and death records until 1908. The law lapsed in 1913, but it was reinstated in 1914. By state law, birth records are confidential for one hundred years, death records for fifty years.

Death records usually include the name of the deceased, date and place of death, age at the time of death, cause of death, occupation, name of spouse and, beginning in 1914, name and birthplace of parents, along with the date and place of burial.

Information on a death certificate is dependent upon how much firsthand knowledge the informant or next-of-kin knew about the deceased.

Vital records are an important resource for those conducting genealogical research, or for individuals who need vital records for documentation purposes. If you are looking for a vital record for a loved one, please contact our Public Services staff for information about how to search these records.

The State Library and Archives is a division of the Tennessee Department of State and Tre Hargett, Secretary of State.


  1. I am trying to locate Birth certificates from the 50's not able to find alot of them ..Johnson children

    1. Hello Nada,

      Thanks for your question. Information regarding birth and death records held at TSLA can be found on our website at

      It was unclear to us from your question whether you were interested in birth records from the 1850s or 1950s, so we’ll try to answer this question in both cases.

      There was no official statewide registration of births and deaths in Tennessee before 1908. Four cities did keep some earlier birth and death records, which are available through the Tennessee State Library & Archives. Searches of these records can be requested by mail, if the year of the event is known. Please contact us at if you are interested in following up with us on this front.

      Birth records for the birth years 1914 to Present are held by the Tennessee Department of Health’s Office of Vital Records. Please visit for further information.