ABOUT: Birth records typically provide the individual’s date of birth and parents’ names. Depending on the time period, there are different ways to access birth records. It became a statewide law to record births at the probate court of the county where the birth occurred in 1867. Prior to this time, it is helpful to use census records to determine birth dates. Births that occurred after December 19, 1908 are recorded by the Ohio Department of Health.
USE: Birth records are useful when compiling family histories because in addition to providing birth dates, they sometimes provide information about the child’s parents.
ACCESS: Birth records are publicly available. OHS has probate court records from several counties around the state. If the person was born in one of these counties between 1867 and December 19, 1908, we may have the record you are looking for. It can be viewed at the Ohio History Center in the Archives/Library, or you can submit a research request and have the record found and sent to you by the Research Services Staff (see below for procedure). Many of these collections are available on microfilm. This is indicated by a copy number preceded by GR.