The Multnomah County Library has a webpage with information on how to find vital records in Oregon. If you are seeking vital records stored locally, check with your own public library’s website or your local city, county, or court clerk offices.
The Washington County Law Library has a new legal research guide on filing, finding, registering, and amending Oregon vital records and locating vital records from other states. For information specifically about Oregon marriage licenses, see Laura’s previous post from June 2009. If you are trying to locate divorce records, see my post from September 26, 2011. As always, you can locate all of the documents uploaded to the law library’s website in our document index.
1) Check first with your local public library! Public librarians know how to find all sorts of genealogical information in print and online and have networks for asking other librarians when the specific question is particularly vexing.
2) In Oregon, public libraries may have these subscription databases that you can search, sometimes remotely:
a) America’s Obituaries and Death Notices
b) Biography and Genealogy Master Index
c) Ancestry Library has an Oregon Death Index. It’s similar to the SSDI except it has Oregon Death Certificate numbers (but no SSNs). Call your library. Some libraries subscribe to it, but not necessarily as a remote access database so you may need to visit your library, use their local email reference service, or use the Oregon statewide one, L-net.
If you get your marriage license in one Oregon county and get married in another, where can you get a certified copy of your marriage license 30 years later?
This is a slightly different question from the one I answered a little while ago: How do I find out if someone in Oregon or Washington is married? But the research is similar – and the following information also applies to Domestic Partnership records.
1) Check the Oregon county where you got your marriage license (the issuing county), not the one where the ceremony was held. Or, preferably (assuming a certain passage of time), contact the Oregon Center for Health Statistics, where you will find the Oregon’s vital records office, the resting place for Oregon birth, marriage, divorce, and death records.
You might think this is an easy question to answer. But it’s not!
Oregon Vital Records needs to know in which county the license was issued. So, in Oregon, if you want to know if someone is married, you might need to check county by county.
It’s no better in Washington State. You would need to know the approximate date of marriage and the county in which it occurred. Otherwise, you have to search county by county.