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Death Notices in Nashville Newspapers 1855-1907

 

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The state of Tennessee did not require the keeping of death records until 1908. The city of Nashville began keeping its own death records in 1881; Davidson County, separate from Nashville, began keeping its own death records in 1900.

Newspapers published in Nashville from 1855-1907 frequently carried notices for the deceased. Death notices were extremely brief and usually did not include any information on the family of the deceased. A death notice usually lists only the name, age, race, and cause of death.

The death notice does not always list the exact date of death for the deceased. The indexes that follow give the date the death notice appeared in the newspaper, not the date of death.

Researcher Clarance Campbell collected over 32,000 death notices from five Nashville newspapers published between 1855-1907:

  • [DA] Daily American (1875 - 1894)
  • [DNP] Daily Nashville Patriot (1855 - 1862)
  • [DNTW] Daily Nashville True Whig (1855)
  • [NA] Nashville American (1894-1907)
  • [NB] Nashville Banner (1876-1907)

PLEASE NOTE that this is not a complete index of all deaths recorded in Nashville newspapers between 1855-1907. The index covers only the death notices that appeared under the headings "Deaths", "Deaths of the Day", and "Funerals".

Please see the section on our web site for instructions on ordering a newspaper death notice listed on one of the following pages.

 

Index compiled by Clarence Campbell
Index transcribed by Peggie Sides

Updated October 15, 2009

 

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