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United States Birth Information in Newspapers (National Institute)

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The original content for this article was contributed by The National Institute for Genealogical Studies in June 2012. It is an excerpt from their course US: Newspaper Records  by Rhonda McClure. The Institute offers over 200 comprehensive genealogy courses for a fee ($).

Vital Statistics In Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Birth Announcements[edit | edit source]

While most papers included announcements of marriages and deaths or burials, births are a little rarer, at least in the 1800s. For those researching an adopted line, it might be possible to find the name of the biological mother in the births, though these birth announcements are not major items, more along the lines of single line entries for a given week, similar to the marriage license notices.

When there is something special about the birth or the mother or father was well known, it is possible that you will find more than a one line mention in the newspaper.


Dallas Morning News, December 11, 1903, Dallas, Texas Multiple births, especially before modern medical technology, were a major event. While today we do not hear much about someone having twins or triplets, only hearing when a mother gives birth to five or more babies at once, in the past, even having twins or triplets that all survived was a major news story.


Sometimes the birth announcement has more to do with a different connection, an interesting coincidence, for instance.

Happy Conductors
The Daily American, December 7, 1884, Nashville, Tennessee


Other times the announcement is because of something terrible that has happened to the family or to the child.


Information in this Wiki page is excerpted from the online course US: Newspaper Records offered by The National Institute for Genealogical Studies. To learn more about this course or other courses available from the Institute, see our website. We can be contacted at

We welcome updates and additions to this Wiki page.