Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Case Study: McDonnell Part III - Death Certificate

Ordering a death certificate is a necessary step to documenting the life and times of my maternal grandmother Frances Irene (Goering) Froman McDonnell. It is something I overlooked, because I attended the funeral, and went through the division of her personal affects. The source for the information in my genealogy program has previously been listed as "personal knowledge of granddaughter..." . Since responsible genealogists gather all available data on each ancestor, I've decided to order the document.

Being close to my grandmother, I knew she died Washington state and recognized the link provided to her entry in the Washington State Death Index. On the sidebar I found a button to order the certificate through the reliable, but very expensive VitalChek. $20 for shipping? I don't think so.

By going directly to the Washington State Department of Health, printing out the form and snail mailing my request, I paid $20, with no additional charge for 1st class mail. That is a savings of $32 - nothing to sneeze at in this day and age. If I fax my request to the same office, the cost for the document is $32 as illustrated below. It should be noted that if I had chosen to order the document online through this site, I was directed to VitalChek.

Once the document arrives, Ol' Myrt here will report on her findings.

Happy family tree climbing!
Myrt :)
Your friend in genealogy.

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