Return to Obituaries Homepage
This guide to Illinois obituary records was created to provide genealogists with access to the best Illinois obituary databases from a single web page.
Obituaries contain information about a person's life, their death, place of burial, surviving relatives and contact information for the funeral home.
This webpage gives you access to all of the online databases containing Illinois obituaries, Illinois death notices, other Illinois obituary records, and various other related Illinois genealogy records.
Obituaries have long been used to help with genealogy research. The Internet has allowed people to store obituary records into various online obituary archives. This has brought access to online obituary records much more easier for genealogy researchers.
Newspaper obituaries are among the most popular form of online obituaries. Other obituaries published in journals, and by funeral homes, are also available online. Most newspapers publish their recent obituaries online.
The Internet is also a popular way to find celebrity obituaries. Obituaries of celebrities can be found on hundreds of websites. Searching for "celebrity obituaries" on a search engine like Google.com can yield thousands of online obituary records.
Illinois Death Records Search
Illinois Newspaper Obituaries (1815 to 2001)
Illinois Newspaper Obituary Collection - This is a collection of obituaries archived from Newspapers.
- You can search by person's name
- You can search by date of publication
- You can search by date of birth or death
- Includes newspaper obituaries from foreign countries too
Illinois Obituary Records Online
The wealth of genealogical and biographical information to be found in an informative obituary certainly makes the effort of searching for one worthwhile. For many of our ancestors (and relatives), the obituary is the only "biographical sketch" that was ever devoted to that individual. In addition to names, dates, and places of birth, marriage, and death, the obituary often identifies relationships of the deceased as child, sibling, parent, grandparent, etc., to numerous other individuals. Obituaries may even suggest other documentation of an individual's death - a death certificate in another county because the hospital was located there; church or cemetery records (by identifying the place of burial or the officiating minister); or records of a coroner's inquest because the death was sudden or unexpected. And, of course, the wealth of detail in an informative obituary may open up many research avenues.
In an obituary search, it is necessary to investigate the files of all likely newspapers. It is impossible to know beforehand which, if any, paper is going to have the best or fullest obituary. Many cities have more than one paper and an obituary for a specific individual could appear in more than one place. Also, when considering possible obituary sources don't just check in the community where the individual died - also check the community (or communities) where the individual lived. Many people in their later years go to live with children and often die far from where they spent most of their adult lives. But, if they still had connections with the home community, there is a good chance that an obituary will appear there, perhaps a more detailed one than will be found in the community of death, where that person was just a new or temporary resident. However, the opposite may also be true.
Recommended Illinois Genealogy Records
- Illinois Cemetery Records - online burial records
- Illinois Genealogy Records - online genealogy databases
- Illinois Genealogy Explorer - complete listing of genealogy resources
- Illinois Genealogy Queries - meet other Illinois genealogy researchers
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