The indexes to New York State Vital Records (except NY City) have been placed in the Broome County Public Library, 185 Court Street, Binghamton, NY 13901 (607-778-6400). Those indexes have Birth records (1880-1935), Marriage records (1880-1960) and Death records (1880-1960). This makes ten places that you can see and search the Vital Records Indexes. The other places where the Indexes are available are:
- Albany – New York State Archives
- Buffalo – Buffalo & Erie County Public Library
- Elmira – Steele Memorial Library
- Glens Falls – Crandall Public Library
- New York City – National Archives (Northeast Region)
- Patchogue – Patchogue-Medford Library
- Rochester – Rochester Public Library
- Syracuse – Onondaga County Public Library
- Watertown – Flower Memorial Library
One advantage of the indexes is that they list the date and place of the event. In some cases that may be enough information without ordering the certificate for $22 and which takes 6 months or more to receive from the NY State Depy. of Health.
Note that some vital records weren’t recorded for the first few years as there wasn’t any enforcement.
I wrote a three part series on NY Vital Records in August 2009 which gives a lot more information. Use the search box on this page and search for “Vital Records.”