Vital records, as their name suggests, are connected with central life events: birth, marriage, and death. Maintained by civil authorities, they are prime sources of genealogical information; but, unfortunately, official vital records are available only for relatively recent periods. These records, despite their recent creation in the United States, are critically important in genealogical research, often supplying details on family members well back into the nineteenth century. The Source: A Guidebook of American Genealogy, by Loretto Szucs and Sandra Luebking.

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Division of Vital Records
Rhode Island Department of Health
3 Capitol Hill, Room 101
Providence, RI 02908-5097

State office keeps birth and marriage records for 100 years and keeps death records for 50 years. For earlier records, write to the city/town clerk where the event occurred or to the Rhode Island State Archives, 337Westminster Street, Providence, RI 02903. Additional copies of the same record ordered at the same time are$10.00 each.

Money order should be made payable to General Treasurer, State of Rhode Island. To verify current fees, the telephone number is (401) 277-2811. This will be a recorded message.

Birth  $15.00  1899 to present

Death$15.00 1949 to present

Divorce  $3.00

Clerk of Family Court
1 Dorrance Plaza
Providence, RI 02903

Marriage  $15.00 – Rhode Island Births, 1636-1930
Rhode Island Marriages, 1636-1930 – This collection contains records from the following locations: Providence Births 1636-1920, Providence Marriages 1851-1920, Providence Deaths 1636-1930, Bristol County – Barrington, Bristol, and Warren, Kent County – Coventry, East Greenwich, Warwick, and West Greenwich, Washington County – Charlestown, Exeter, Hopkinton, North Kingstown, Richmond, South Kingstown, and Westerly.

Rhode Island State Database