Nebraska 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 Nebraska 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 Nebraska then read on and hopefully we can help you out.

About Nebraska

The 37th state of the Union, Nebraska achieved statehood on March 1st 1867 just two years after the end of the Civil War. As a territory it was a sparsely settled state but during the California Gold Rush in 1848 the population started to increase.

In 1872 J. Sterling Morton proposed a holiday to promote the planting of more trees in Nebraska. This became known as Arbor Day and on the first year of this holiday around 1 million trees were planted. Today a total of 45 states acknowledge this holiday.

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 this state 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 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 Social Security Death Index 1935 – 2014

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

Nebraska, Index to Deaths, 1904-1968

This index of deaths reported to the state between 1904 – 1968 is found on the website so it does require a paid membership to view and use fully. There are no digital images of death certificates, only an index with some basic biographical data and the certificate number.

Using the certificate number you can order a full copy of the original document but there will be an additional fee to do this.

Click here to search Nebraska, Index to Deaths, 1904-1968

Nebraska Death Index, 1904-1968

This is essentially the same index as you would find above at but it is instead found on the Reclaim the Records website. It is completely free to use and again you can find out certificate numbers which will allow you to order a copy of the original death record.

Click here to search Nebraska Death Index, 1904-1968

Death Records Indexes, Obituaries and Cemeteries by County

You can find records via the death indexes from or Reclaim the Records but for deaths prior to standardized state record reporting you may need to look at the county level instead.

County Nebraska Death Records Indexes, Obituaries and Cemeteries by County
Box Butte
  • See Douglas County
Scotts Bluff


The state of Nebraska is very rural which means that often older death records are sparse and hard to find. In order to access death certificates you need to locate the certificate number and a copy.

There are a few local indexes in certain states for obituaries and burial records, however, that can be very helpful in your research.

Neil Edwards

Neil Edwards

Genealogist and family-tree research specialist

Neil was born in Shropshire, England surrounded by centuries of living history. His interest in the past has been a lifelong passion leading to undergraduate degrees in both Economic History & Geography and History & Politics.

This interest in history quickly translated to family history when he moved to the U.S. in 2010. It was here that he began working on his own family tree as well as that of his American wife. That research allowed him to gain a wealth of experience working with both U.S. and European genealogical documents and studying their best uses in researching family history.

Following 9 years of honing his genealogical research skills, Neil was proud to have earned a certificate in Genealogical Research from Boston University in late 2019. Neil also took part in the research process for a Duke University study into the families of 19th Century UK Members of Parliament.

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