Missouri is one of a handful of states that have made digital death certificates available to the public. While some states have seemingly become more conservative about allowing access, Missouri launched the “Post-1910 Death Records Project” with certificates created according to Missouri law after 1910, and more than fifty years old. I was on the site again today, hoping to see certificates from 1958. However, I can’t see that they have been launched yet. The 1910 through 1957 certificates are available however – indexed and available for FREE. There are over two million individual certificates of death, with additional records to be made available each year.

The online index can be searched by first & last name, and county, as well as by month and year. Once a name is selected, a digitized image of the original certificate can be simply accessed online.

I searched for the Surname of Irvine – limiting my search to Lawrence County.
William S Irvine results

Sure enough, I found one entry – that for my cousin, William S. Irvine, who died in 1952 of a brain tumor. Following is a digital copy of his death certificate – which took me all of 30 seconds or so to find and access. Folks, it does not get much better than this.
William S Irvine death certificate

This is a remarkable database. Note that there is also a Missouri Birth & Death Records Database which is an abstract of the birth, stillbirth, & death records recorded before 1909 and that are available on microfilm at the Missouri State Archives.

Now go search for Missouri death certificates 1910 through 1957 for your relatives.