Series GR-2986 - Death registration index

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Death registration index

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  • textual record
  • microform

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  • 1872-1984 (Creation)
    British Columbia Vital Statistics Agency

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Microfilm (neg.), 16 mm, 10 reels [B14439-B14448]

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Biographical history

The British Columbia Vital Statistics Agency (BCVSA) is responsible for determining and registering births, deaths and marriages and for issuing certificates related to these events. The agency also performs civil marriage ceremonies through private marriage commissioners, issues marriage licences, administers legal changes of name, files and searches for wills notices, performs genealogical tracing, and maintains a special purpose registry for registering cases of congenital anomalies and various handicapping conditions. In addition, the agency provides statistical and research services for various government programs, universities and special interest research groups. The registration of births, deaths and marriages in British Columbia was entrusted to the Registrar General of Titles under the Births, Deaths and Marriages Act of 1872 (SBC 1872, c. 26). Until 1911 the Registrar reported to the Department of the Attorney General, except for the years 1899 to 1901 when the office was under the Department of the Provincial Secretary. In 1911 the Registrar General of Titles became the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages under the Provincial Board of Health, which reported to the Department of the Provincial Secretary. The Vital Statistics Branch was created within the Provincial Board of Health under the control of the Provincial Health Officer in 1933, and was renamed the Division of Vital Statistics in 1936. The Division of Vital Statistics became the British Columbia Vital Statistics Agency in 1996. The Provincial Board of Health was removed from the Department of the Provincial Secretary to become the Department of Health and Welfare in 1946. It was subsequently renamed the Department of Health and Hospital Insurance (1959), the Department of Health (1973), and the Ministry of Health (1976). The Division of Vital Statistics remained part of this organization throughout these changes.

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Scope and content

This death registration index consists of volumes containing alphabetical listings, by date groups and surname, of all deaths registered within the Province of British Columbia, from 1872 to 1984. The pre-1969 index volumes were compiled on an early computerized system by the registrar's office in Victoria from indexes created in regional offices. The index was printed and the pages were placed into volumes which were microfilmed for public reference purposes. From 1970-1984 index volumes were created annually. At the time of microfilming, index volumes for the years 1980, 1981 and 1983 were not available. Registrations for these years are indexed, however, on the microfiche index (GR-3034) and on the BC Archives Genealogy Search web site.

Each entry in index volumes from 1872 to 1976 consists of, from left to right: the name of the deceased (surname followed by given names), the gender of the deceased, the place of death, the date of registration (format is mm/dd/yyyy, e.g. 05/21/1885), the date of death (format is also mm/dd/yyyy), the number of the volume in which the registration is found, the record (or registration) number, and the age at death (this column does not have a title at the top of the page).

Beginning in 1977 the index entries consist of, from left to right: the name of the deceased (surname followed by given names), gender, birth place (using a numerical code) and date of birth, age at death, place of death, date of death and the registration number.

See attached finding aid for more information.

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General note

Accession number(s): 89-0789; 91-0451; 93-8277

General note

Please note that the information on this index is provided only for the purpose of locating registration documents and should not be taken as authoritative. The final authority for all registration information is the document itself.

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