How and when vital records were recorded for a particular area varies by county and state. This is an important section to capture some of these nuances. Some questions I ask myself to help develop this section are:
- What are my options for vital records for this town/county/state?
- When did vital registration begin?
- What county offices hold the records, if any?
- What state offices are there that hold the records?
- What is available at FamilySearch? At Ancestry? (etc.)
- What is available at the state archives and state historical society?
Then I start Googling the state and county offices, looking at Cyndi’s List, checking the FamilySearch catalog and wiki, and so on. As I find the information I need, I build the guide. Here are some example sections for my Vital Records sections:
I follow a very similar system for finding the probate and court records for the area of focus.
I also include a section providing more information on the county (or state) offices themselves:
And you just keep building to your heart’s content. Next up, the section on published sources…