South Carolina Department
of Health and Environmental Control's
Office of Public Health Statistics and Information
Services offers a wide range of services. The
Division of Vital Records is the state's official
records keeper for vital information pertaining to
births, deaths, marriages, and divorces occurring in
South Carolina. South Carolina law requiring the
filing of birth and death certificates became
effective January 01, 1915. Today a fireproof vault
in Columbia at department's state office at 2600
Bull Street houses more than 9 million original
birth and death certificates. State law also
requires the department to house copies of marriage
records beginning July 1950 and divorce records
beginning July 1962. The state office of the
Division of Vital Records in Columbia conducts
searches for records of birth, death, marriage and
divorce. Each of South Carolina's 46 counties has a
vital records office in the county public health
department. Branch vital records offices in the 46
county public health departments can search for
birth and death records only.
Death records contain more than just the date of
death. Important information about relatives can also be uncovered
searching these vital records.
When searching vital
records, you will likely look at birth record and marriage records.
You may think that death records contain little information about a
person except for date of death. Death records will provide you with
important information about a person. Here’s some of the information
you can find in death records:
The birthplace of the person. You may not
have known that your grandfather was born overseas until you
looked at his death record. Sometimes a county coroner will
not check other county vital records to verify the
deceased’s birth place and will assume that the person was
born in the town they died. Most of the time a family member
or relative will be able to give someone the correct date of
birth to be included on death records.
The name of the deceased person’s parents.
Date of birth. Some people lie about their
age, however death records must be as accurate as possible
and even if a person lied to everyone, the death record will
reveal the truth.
Cause of death.
Where they died. If you are searching
through very old county vital records, knowing where someone
died is important. Death records are normally filed where a
Searching through county vital records is not
always easy. If you don’t know where someone died, you may have to
call or visit many agencies and counties to find death records. This
can be time consuming and expensive. Online record search companies
compile this information in one place. You can search for death
records from California to Florida. These searches can be relatively
inexpensive. You don’t have to leave your home to find the death
records you need and how to obtain a copy.