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How to Obtain Birth & Death Records

Vital records registration started in New York State (outside of New York City) in 1881.  In Tompkins County, birth and death records are kept at the Tompkins County Health Department.  In most areas of New York State these records are kept by the Town Clerks but in some areas, like Tompkins County, they are kept by the counties.  Certificates are also filed with the New York State Department of Health. 


Tompkins County Birth Certificates (Includes Link to NYS Health Dept.)


Tompkins County Death Certificates (Includes Link to NYS Health Dept.)





The Groton Town Clerk also provides transcripts of marriage licenses for genealogical purposes.  The difference is that a transcript of the license shows all the information, such as mother and father, place of birth, etc.  In order to get a copy of a marriage certificate or a transcript you must either be one of the parties to the marriage; or the license must be over 50 years old; or both parties to the license must be deceased; or you must be a direct-line descent (i.e. child, grandchild, great grandchild, etc.).  The Town of Groton Marriage records begin with 1881.


You can also contact our Town Historian for help with local genealogical information:

Rosemarie Tucker, Town Historian


Another place to start your search is the  Tompkins County NYS GenWeb Site



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