Where to find Texas census records, immigration records, land records, maps, vital records and more.
Texas began statewide civil registration of births and deaths in 1903, marriages in 1966, and divorces in 1968. Copies of birth and death certificates can be requested from the county clerk's office where the record originated, or the state bureau of vital statistics. The county office is often a good first choice; fees vary. Certified copies of marriage licenses come only from the county clerk's office that issued the license; copies of divorce decrees come only from the district clerk's office where the case was heard. The state vital statistics office issues only a verification of marriage or divorce based on the application the court clerk submitted to that office. The website http://www.dshs.state.tx.us/vs
provides instructions and fees; allow about three months for a response from the state office. The voluntary Central Adoption Registry is described at http://www.dshs.state.tx.us/vs/reqproc/adoptionregistry.shtm
. Pre-1903 vital records exist for some locations. Marriage records often survive from the creation of the county; many pre-republic marriages have been published. The Congress of the Republic granted few divorces.