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Tennessee Vital Records - Births, Deaths & Marriages

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Learn how and where to obtain birth, marriage, and death certificates and records in Tennessee, including the dates for which Tennessee vital records are available, where they are located, and links to online Tennessee state vital records databases.

Tennessee Vital Records:

Tennessee Vital Records
1st Floor, Central Services Building
421 5th Avenue, North
Nashville, TN 37243
Phone: 615-741-1763

What You Need to Know:
Check or money order should be made payable to Tennessee Vital Records. Personal checks are accepted. Call or visit the Web site to verify current fees. A photocopy of a valid government issued form of identification which includes the requestor’s signature, usually a driver’s license, must accompany requests for birth and death records.

Web site: Tennessee Office of Vital Records


Tennessee Birth Records:

Dates: From 1908

Cost of copy: $15.00 long form; $8.00 short form

Comments: Tennessee birth records less than 100-years-old are only available to the individual named on the certificate, or their spouse, parent, legal guardian or child. However, verification of information from the records can be provided to any requester. Birth records are available from the State Office beginning with January 1914 births. Records of births from 1908-1912 were kept by the County Clerk in the county where the birth occurred and are also available at the Tennessee State Archives. Records of some births that occurred in the major cities (Nashville since June 1881, Knoxville since July 1881 and Chattanooga since January 1882) are also available. Although the short form is cheaper, the long form (a photocopy of the original record) is much better for genealogical purposes!
Application for Tennessee Birth Certificate

* Memphis birth records from April 1874 - December 1887 and November 1898 - January 1, 1914 are available from the Memphis & Shelby County Health Department.

Online:
Index to Davidson County Birth Records, 1908–1912
Index to Nashville Birth Records, 1881–1913
Index to Shelby County Birth Records, 1874–1906


Tennessee Death Records:

Dates: From 1908

Cost of copy: $7.00

Comments: Tennessee death records less than 50-years-old are only available to the individual named on the certificate, or their spouse, parent, legal guardian or child. However, verification of information from the records (excluding cause of death) can be provided to any requester. The State office has had death records for the entire State since January 1914, for Nashville since July 1874, for Knoxville since July 1887 and for Chattanooga since March 6, 1872. Death records are available from the State Vital Records Office for the past 50 years. Older death records can be requested through the Tennessee State Archives. Although the short form is cheaper, the long form (a photocopy of the original record) is much better for genealogical purposes!
Application for Tennessee Death Certificate

Tennessee Marriage Records:

Dates: From 1861*

Cost of copy: $15.00 (state)

Comments: Tennessee marriage records less than 50-years-old are only available to the individuals named on the certificate, or their spouse, parent, legal guardian or child. However, verification of information from the records can be provided to any requester. The State office has marriage records for the entire State for the past 50 years. Older records are held by the Tennessee State Archives.
Application for Tennessee Marriage Certificate

* For Memphis birth records from April 1874 - December 1887 and November 1898 - January 1, 1914, and for Memphis death records from May 1848 to January 1, 1914, write to Memphis-Shelby County Health Department, Division of Vital Records, Memphis, TN 38105.

A list of Tennessee marriages before 1861 has been published in six volumes. Copies of entries for a surname can be provided upon request for a small fee from the Tennessee State Archives.

Online:
Tennessee County Marriages, 1790-1950
(index & images)


Tennessee Divorce Records:

Dates: From July 1905

Cost of copy: $15.00

Comments: Vital Records Office keeps divorce records for 50 years. Older records are maintained by the Tennessee State Archives. Divorces can also be obtained from the Clerk of Court in the county where the divorce was granted.

* Early divorce requests in Tennessee had to be approved by the Tennessee General Assembly. Search the Index to Names in the Acts of Tennessee 1796-1850 to see if there is a listing for a particular individual. If found, the Tennessee State Archives can provide copies for a fee.

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