County vital records such as birth records, divorce decrees, marriage certificates and death records are required to be
filed in the USA. Genealogists use this information regularly to learn more about family history.
Courthouses across the United States saw an opportunity with the Internet. They created online databases for marriage records and
other information that allows genealogists to search for these county vital records from their home or office computer.
Many counties, still have not computerized their records. Many people just wanting to trace one record are not aware of even how to
begin a search. Online records databases are a way to help anyone trying to find a marriage record. Online search companies compile these
county vital statistics in one place. These databases have several advantages:
- You can search for the marriage record discreetly.
- Online databases contain records from all 50 states.If you don’t know where the marriage record was filed, you don’t
want to waste you time calling from Florida to Alaska. The information is at you fingertips when you use an online database search
company to help you find the marriage record.
- These searches are inexpensive. Most searches cost less than $50—even if you need unlimited access to county vital records.
If you are searching for just one marriage record, you could spend as little as $10. This saves time and money for anyone needing to
find out where a record is fast.
If you know just a little bit of information, you can find a marriage record easily. Just type in the correct information in the
lines provided and you will see a list of records available.
The Following genealogical information is available directly from Alabama agencies:
Alabama vital records include birth, death, marriage and divorce records. Alabama law did not require the recording of birth or
death certificates until 1908. The statewide recording of marriage certificates began in 1936 and divorce certificates in 1950.
The Alabama Department of Archives and History has indexes to those records, but original certificates must be obtained from the
Alabama Center for Health Statistics.
Alabama Department of Public Health
The RSA Tower
201 Monroe Street
Montgomery, Alabama 36104
Prior to 1908 some vital records were recorded at the county level. Generally this practice began around 1880. Most birth records
list sex, race, place and date of birth of individual but no name. The names of parents and physician/midwife attending are
also sometimes listed. Most death records list name of individual, and place of death, age at death and attending physician.
Some include place of burial and cause of death. Most marriage records include names of husband and wife, presiding official
at marriage, and signatures of two people who posted the marriage bond. Most divorce records list only date of divorce and names of
the parties and officials involved. Not all records are complete. Each county had vital events which went unrecorded or records
which were lost or damaged. Many courthouses have burned and the records they contained may be limited. Some counties separated
vital records by race, with records for whites and African-Americans recorded in separate books. The original designations recorded
on the volumes (White, Black, Colored) have been maintained on the records listed.