How to Find Birth Records On and Offline
Since the United States has always been a country filled with people who came from other places, interest in genealogy has always been high, but thanks to the Internet, people from all corners of the globe are connecting like never before and almost everyone has taken an interest in tracing their past. Perhaps the single most useful document for tracing your genealogy is the birth certificate. Not only does a birth certificate officially mark the point where a distant relative came into the world, but we all need an official copy of our birth certificate to get things like a passport or other official government identification. Of all of the vital records searched for every year, birth certificates are the most common. Let's take a look at how you can get an official copy of your birth certificate online and the old fashioned way.
In most US states, you need to contact the city clerk's office in the county in which you were born. Many people falsely believe that you contact the hospital in which you were born in. They may have a copy of your birth certificate on file, but in most cases, they can't issue you an official copy. If you check the phone book for the county office in which you were born, you can easily find the vital records office or you can simply call a general number and you can be redirected to the proper office. Vital record requests often cost anywhere between $15 and $50 depending on the state or county and take 4-8 weeks depending on the backlog. Some areas have rush processing available if you are in need of a passport immediately.
The Internet has made much of the guesswork regarding obtaining birth certificates obsolete. Websites like RecordsProject.com can give you the right phone numbers for every county clerk's office in the United States with just a few clicks. These websites are even more useful if you live in one state but you need a phone number for a clerk's office on the other side of the country. It is hard enough finding the right phone numbers in our own phone book, but if we don't even have the right phone book, we can be out of luck. Finding our own birth certificates or those of our ancestors has never been easier thanks to the Internet and the hard work of county clerks from coast to coast.