When researching family history, one of the most valuable resources is a death certificate. Death certificates can include date of birth and death, marital status and a spouse’s name, occupation, birthplace, parent names, cause of death and location of burial.
While many states and municipalities require that a death certificate be purchased, Washington state has recently decided to release and digitize death certificates for free on the Washington State Digital Archives. The ongoing project hopes to eventually offer death certificates for all those who died in Washington State from July 1, 1907 – December 31, 1995. Currently the most complete records are those prior to 1960 but later records are beginning to show up. So, if you are hoping to find more information on a relative, check the Digital Archives. And, if you don’t find the record right away, keep checking back!