Connecticut Death Records and Death Index

It may surprise you to learn how often genealogists face this particular set of circumstances. They are aware of when their ancestor was born, when they may have married, when their children were born but they just can’t find out when they died.

There are a fair few instances where the only information missing is the death date which can be very frustrating. This is why knowing what death records may be available to you can be vital in your research.

It is important to note that one of the biggest issues in finding a death record can be looking in the wrong place. You may be surprised how often people miss records because they are looking in the wrong county and sometimes even the wrong state.

In this post we will be looking at Connecticut state death records and indexes to try and help you find those elusive ancestors. So if you are confident that your ancestor likely died in the state of Connecticut then read on and hopefully we can help you out.

About Connecticut

One of the original 13 colonies of America, Connecticut was the fifth state to officially join the Union on January 9th 1788. It is one of the New England states and historically has had an economy based on agriculture.

In the mid-19th century however textiles and machine manufacturing also became part of the state's economy. A well populated state it is roughly 5,544 square miles in area and has a population of over 3.6 million.

Social Security Death Index 1935 – 2014

All American citizens, naturalized immigrants and resident aliens require a Social Security number for proof of identification and authorization to work. This number follows us throughout our life and when we die this nine digit code is very important.

The Social Security Death Index (SSDI) is a database of death records that was compiled from the United States Social Security Administration Death Master File. This was until 2014 when the rules changed and public access to the Death Master File had to take place through a certification program.

Those researching the deaths of ancestors in Connecticut will likely find that most people who have died between 1936 and 2014 can be found on the Social Security Death Index. This does however only hold true if the person had a Social Security number when they died.

It is estimated that since 1973 the SSDI recorded 93% to 96% of the deaths of individuals aged 65 or over. The index was updated frequently and by June of 2011 there were 89,835,920 records available.

The index can be found on websites such as FamilySearch and Ancestry.com and offers details such as:

  • Given name and surname (middle initial since the 1990s)
  • Date of birth
  • Month and year of death (Full date of death for accounts active after 2000)
  • Social Security number
  • State or territory Social Security number was issued
  • Last place of residence when alive including ZIP code

Click here to search Ancestrydeathindex

U.S. Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007

This is more or less an extension of the information you can find from the Social Security Death Index. It has been extracted from the SSDI records but features more details. It does not include all of the names found in the SSDI however but there are at least 49 million names included.

In this record you may find additional information such as:

  • Date and place of birth
  • Parents names if deceased would be over 75 when you are viewing the records (may be redacted if under 75)
  • Citizenship status
  • Gender
  • Sometimes race or ethnic group

Click here to search AncestryDeathindex

Ancestry Death Records for Connecticut

Thanks to a long history the state of Connecticut has no shortage of records that are available especially when it comes to recording deaths. Ancestry has an extensive collection which are as you might imagine only available with a paid subscription.

Below are a few of the databases you can find on Ancestry to help you research when your ancestors from the state may have died.

Connecticut Death Index, 1949-2012

This collection has over 1.7 million which have been transcribed from the state's death index between 1949 – 2012.

The information you can find from this index includes:

  • Name of deceased
  • Occupation
  • Marital status
  • Date of birth
  • State of birth
  • Address at death
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Spouses name
  • Fathers surname

The information obtained from this index can help you locate a death certificate and allow you to order this from the relevant government authority.

Click here to search the Connecticut death index

Connecticut Town Death Records, pre-1870 (Barbour Collection)

This Ancestry death index focuses on deaths recorded prior to 1870 within the Lucius Barnes Barbour collection. It is a set of books recording deaths in the state up to and slightly past 1870. The information contained in this record is basic including simply names, ages, death locations and death dates.

Lucius Barnes Barbour was a well known researcher from Connecticut and his work on this collection of volumes is preserved at the Connecticut State Library although multiple microfilm copies also exist taken from the original books.

Click here to search the Barbour Collection

Connecticut Wills and Probate Records, 1609-1999

Over 3 centuries of wills and probate records can be found in this Ancestry index. This can give you a deep insight into the families of the state. Records could indicate family members, property owned and certain family situations.

Click here to search the Connecticut Wills and Probate Records

Family Search Death Records for Connecticut

The Utah based website Familysearch.org has a huge collection of records including several death indexes for Connecticut. This is a free website that only requires you to register an account. The collections included on Familysearch are as follows:

Connecticut, Deaths, 1640-1955

This is an index covering over 3 centuries of the state's histories which only includes transcriptions of the index. As Familysearch does not own the rights to the index they can not post the actual images of the written index.

Click here to search Connecticut, Deaths, 1640-1955

Connecticut, Charles R. Hale Collection, Vital Records, 1640-1955

This is a collection found on Familysearch that includes newspaper notices and grave marker inscriptions.

Click here to search the Connecticut, Charles R. Hale Collection

Connecticut State Library Personal and Family Vital Records Collection

The Connecticut State Library has an extensive collection of indexes relating to all types of vital records including births, marriage and of course death. There are county specific records as well as state records to be found at this website.

Click here to search the Connecticut State Library

County Specific Death Indexes

With its long history Connecticut has a lot of death records and indexes stored at the county level as well. Genealogical societies, libraries and local museums have some extensive collections.

County Death Indexes by County
Fairfield
Hartford
Litchfield
Middlesex
New Haven
New London
Stamford See Fairfield County
Tolland
Windham

Conclusion

Unlike many states the long history of Connecticut means it has a very deep collection of vital records. Birth, marriage and death records can be found in the early to mid 1800s which gives researchers a good chance of tracking down death records of some type in this state.

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