New York State Birth Index available online for free

The non-profit organization Reclaim the Records has recently uploaded the images for the New York State Birth Index, for the years 1881-1942, on the website Internet Archive.

This index was previously only available on microfiche at 10 public libraries in New York State and only went up to the year 1937.

There are several tips for using this index.
*There are no New York City births in the index except for births that occurred in Brooklyn, Queens or Staten Island before 1898.
*There are not births for the cities of Albany, Buffalo or Yonkers before 1914
*There are no records for surnames beginning with A to Bib for 1905. Reclaim the Records hopes to obtain copy of these missing records at a later date.

There is no index for the images at this time but you can browse them by year. To view the images, go to:
http://archive.org and in the search box put “New York State Birth Index.” You can sort the results by year by clicking on the words “Date Published” and then selecting “Date Archived”.

Ancestry.com has New York State birth index available online

The New York State Birth Index is now available for searching on Ancestry.com. The index covers the years 1881-1942.

It is name searchable and you can see the images of the actual index pages. An index entry states the name of the person, date and place of event, and State certificate number. The state certificate number is only used if you are requesting a copy of a record from the Department of Health in Albany. It is quicker to request a copy of a birth certificate from a local agency such as Town Halls or Village Halls.

This index does not cover all of New York State. It does not cover New York City boroughs except for the following situations:
*Former towns of Kings County (Brooklyn) prior to their annexation by the City of Brooklyn in the 1880s and ’90s;
*Portions of Westchester County prior to their annexation by New York City in 1895;
*Richmond County (Staten Island) and western Queens County prior to their incorporation into the City of New York on January 1, 1898.

Prior to this index being available online, it was only accessible by using microfiche cards at 11 repositories in New York State. The microfiche cards end in 1937.

You can search Ancestry.com free of charge at public libraries that subscribe to Ancestry.com Library Edition. Check with your local library to see if they have this database.