Place Codes for NJ Vital Records

New Jersey researchers owe a debt of gratitude to the good folks at Reclaim the Records for obtaining the NJ marriage indices and uploading them to the Internet Archive. The indices are accessible for free, and cover almost all of the years from 1901-2016.

Ignore the fifth digit in the place code column. The location is identified by the first four digits.

Ignore the fifth digit in the place code column. The location is identified by the first four digits.

Some researchers have been stumped by how to decode the location codes on the indices, however. For later years, the index provides the names of both the bride and groom, the marriage certificate number, the marriage date, and a four-digit code for the place where the marriage occurred. Unfortunately, these codes don’t seem to be available online anywhere.

To help other researchers, I’ve created a PDF file with the NJ location codes for vital records (click link to download the file). You are free to download this file and use it to decode the marriage indices. It’s fully searchable, so you can type the code number into your search function and quickly identify the town where the marriage occurred. These codes were also used on death records, so some of the locations (like the NJ State Prison) may seem like an odd place to hold a wedding.

Just to make things more confusing (because we’re New Jersey), some years use a five-digit code. The location is identified by only the first four digits of this five-digit number. In the example I’ve illustrated here, the location listed as 0451(4) is Mount Ephraim in Camden County.

Happy searching!

 

{ 52 comments… read them below or add one }

Tricia B January 29, 2018 at 1:12 am

Hello

Thank you for posting the PDF of the code cipher for the New Jersey marriage locations.

I have a question about the four digit codes for place of marriage in New Jersey. The code is 9804 and I don’t see anything that goes up that high on your list. Is there a way to find out the location that number correlates to?

Here is the link to the record page on Ancestry:

https://www.ancestry.com/interactive/61253/46999_543866-00240?pid=900098678&backurl=https://search.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/sse.dll?indiv%3D1%26dbid%3D61253%26h%3D900098678%26tid%3D66465537%26pid%3D350022482107%26hid%3D100272843921%26usePUB%3Dtrue%26_phsrc%3DPoh393%26_phstart%3Ddefault%26usePUBJs%3Dtrue&treeid=66465537&personid=350022482107&hintid=100272843921&usePUB=true&_phsrc=Poh393&_phstart=default&usePUBJs=true

Thank you for your time.

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Debbie January 29, 2018 at 1:52 am

Hi Tricia. Just to make things more complicated, in that particular index, the entries for the place codes and certificate numbers are listed under the wrong headings. In your example, the number 9804 is actually the marriage certificate number, not a place code. The codes in my PDF apply to later years, and won’t be useful in the 1901-1903 index. I’m trying to verify the exact year when the place codes changed.

The good news is you really just need that certificate number and the year to request the marriage record. They’re filed by year and then certificate number for that time period, statewide.

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Carol Van Alphen February 11, 2018 at 3:52 pm

Thank you for your time. I also have a question on location numbers: this is for the year 1903 and the location number is listed as
3814, and the state file number is listed as 548. I cannot find either of these numbers on your reference list. I was looking on page 313 at Fleisch, Augusta

https://archive.org/stream/NJ_Marriage_Index_Brides_1901-1903_A-K/Reclaim_The_Records_-_New_Jersey_Marriage_Index_-_Brides_-_1901-1903_-_A-K_-#page/n312/mode/1up

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Carol Van Alphen February 11, 2018 at 3:56 pm

I apologize, I just re-read your answer above and see what the issue is. I will mail the state of NJ as their online form will not accept a request without the month and day.

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Debbie February 11, 2018 at 9:36 pm

No problem, Carol. And if you ever need anything from the NJSA, I also do record retrievals. More info here: http://www.bringoutyerdead.com/record-retrieval-services/

Debbie

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emily July 31, 2018 at 9:04 pm

Hello,
I’m looking into a possible great grandmother who looks like she got married in 1924 in new jersey. I looked at the new jersey marriage index that reclaim the records and ancestry have. However, in the 1920-1929 record there is a number in the column where it says Husband initials/place MG.
so an example is JF 7. Do you by chance know what this number stands for who what place MG stands for?
Thank you for your help.

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Debbie July 31, 2018 at 9:27 pm

Hi Emily,

The bad news is I don’t yet have a complete list of the place codes used in that index. But the good news is there is a way for an experienced researcher to retrieve that marriage record, even without knowing the place code. Marriage certificates from that time period are available at the State Archives, but you have to search them yourself or have a researcher do so for you. The State Archives staff cannot search those records for you. With the groom’s surname initial, the volume, and certificate number, it’s possible to locate the certificate.

If you aren’t able to access the State Archives yourself and need help retrieving anything, feel free to email me any time (debbie@bringoutyerdead.com). I do retrievals weekly.

Debbie

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Diane August 14, 2018 at 8:25 am

Thank you very much for explaining the locality codes. You’re much more knowledgeable than the NJ employees who do this full time. Your prices seem very reasonable and I will be seeking your help very soon. Thanks again!

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Ecward February 21, 2019 at 4:57 pm

Hi,

Found my grandmothers marriage info
Date was 01/23/1927, but Place MG. Shown as two digit code of 34

Think they lived in either Bergen County NJ or Hudson County, NJ

Found my marriage info, and the marriage location matches your 4 digit decode sheets.

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Henrietta Majeski March 26, 2019 at 8:15 pm

Hi Debbie,
I found a 1937 marriage record in the NJ Bride’s index, but it only gives the Bride & Groom’s name and year of marriage. No other info is on the record (i.e., place code, certificate number, vol, page, etc.)

My question is how can I find the place and Certificate Number for the marriage?

Regards,
Henny

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Debbie March 26, 2019 at 8:41 pm

Hi Henny,

The good news is you don’t need the place or a certificate number to locate a copy of the marriage record. The marriage records were microfilmed and deposited at the NJ State Archives, and they are organized by year and then by groom’s surname. If you’re able to go to the NJ State Archives yourself and visit their microfilm room, you can go right to the 1937 marriages in the drawer, find the roll with the groom’s surname, and pull the record up on the microfilm reader. If you can’t get to Trenton yourself, there are researchers like myself who can retrieve it for you. Feel free to email me if you need help with this or anything else.

Debbie

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Lori Kenna September 7, 2019 at 2:34 am

Hi.. Im going to NJ in a few months to see if i can get more information than i can from familysearch.org & ancestry.com.

If i go to Trenton to the records (birth marriage death) there can i look at them for free?

Thank you do much… Lori

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Debbie October 16, 2019 at 10:03 pm

Yes, you can. There’s no cost to use the microfilm or to take a photo of the record on the screen. It’s 50 cents per page to print a hard copy.

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DENNIS LAFRENIERE October 16, 2019 at 9:51 pm

Place code 1586 in year 1903. Can you provide any input? Tks for all you do. Dennis Laf…

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Debbie October 16, 2019 at 10:02 pm

Dennis, the 1903 index doesn’t have place codes. The records from 1901-1903 were organized using file numbers, and they were assigned in sequence. A record with file number 1 likely occurred on January 1. A record with file number 28700 likely occurred late in the year. If you need any help obtaining a copy of the record in question, feel free to contact me via email (debbie[at]bringoutyerdead.com).

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Gen October 26, 2019 at 12:56 am

Thank you so much! My grandfather died young and my grandmother doesn’t know much of his past, but this little post has opened a few (much needed) leads!

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susan carr November 10, 2019 at 7:16 am

I finally made a breakthrough with the Reclaim Your Records site and am hoping you can provide me with a location that is not listed on your .pdf list. Can you provide the location name for the New Jersey place of marriage #464, please? Catherine Pothajecky and William Smith were married in 1905.
Thank you kindly,
Susan Carr

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Debbie November 10, 2019 at 6:09 pm

Hi Susan,

The PDF list of place codes is for much later marriages. The index for 1905 does not include place codes, nor are they needed to locate the record. In this case, the index shows 27 464 for the file, which means in the 1905 marriages, this certificate is filed in volume 27 on page 464.

If you do not live in or near NJ and need help obtaining a copy of the marriage certificate, feel free to email me at debbie[at]bringoutyerdead.com. I do retrieve record copies for a small fee, for those who can’t get to the archives in person.

Debbie

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Susan Carr November 13, 2019 at 11:27 pm

Thank you Debbie.
Would this certificate contain the parents of the bride and groom? I’m looking for more than just the index of the name. And would this be like an application with birthplaces and the such?

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Thomas Steven McGuire December 6, 2019 at 6:27 pm

I am looking at the index for Jessie Taylor and Robert Evans married in 1901. The state file number is 530 and the place of marriage is 15636.

I am unable to find 1563 in your list of place codes. Am I just a bad searcher or is it not there ?

Appreciate your help in find where they got married.

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Debbie December 6, 2019 at 10:19 pm

You aren’t a bad searcher, we just have absurdly confusing indexes for NJ records. First, the list of place codes I provided are for much later records. Second, the index for 1901 was printed incorrectly. The column that says file number is not the file number. The column that says place of marriage is the file number. The 1901 marriages are arranged in sequence, by file number. So the key information is the file number 15636.

If you aren’t in NJ or are unable to get to Trenton yourself, and you would like a copy of this marriage certificate, I do retrieve records for people for a small fee. Feel free to email me any time if you have questions or need a record – debbie[at]bringoutyerdead.com.

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Greg Burns January 16, 2020 at 2:03 pm

Hello,

You were recommended to me by Kim Almeida. I live at the Jersey Shore. I am hoping you can help as I will not be able to make it to the NJ Archives for quite awhile. I am looking for the following…2 death certs and 1 marriage cert.

Death of Katherine Giles 24 February 1960 in ELizabeth, NJ
Death of Charles Gee 17 January 1924 in Jersey City
Marriage of Julius Hintze and Lucy Strang in 1909 Likely Jersey City or West Hoboken(Union City)
Do you send certs electronically or via post office? Please let me know. Thank you so much.
Greg

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Debbie January 16, 2020 at 5:30 pm

Hi Greg. I’m going to email you, but yes, I can retrieve those files for you, and I do send them electronically. Check your inbox for a message from me.

Debbie

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Colleen January 16, 2020 at 7:01 pm

Hi no death index 1953. Can you tell me where 09052 as place of death is?

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Colleen January 16, 2020 at 7:02 pm

. Can you tell me where 09052 as place of death is?

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Debbie January 16, 2020 at 7:15 pm

That should be Bayonne.

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Kim May 2, 2020 at 2:47 pm

Hi Debbie. In the midst of this craziness that is going on, I have decided to dive into my family tree. From the tone of your site, it sounds like we share a lot of the same emotions when it comes to unearthing pieces from our past. It appears that my great-grandmother’s side of the family starts to get pretty interesting – a first marriage, a dead husband, a dead child (within the first two years) then an out of wedlock pregnancy, followed by a second marriage – all in the 1920s! Long story to ask a two simple questions.

First, is there a reason that Middlesex County isn’t listed on your PDF of marriage locations? And second, do you know where “Place MG 38” would be? I’m fairly certain it’s the Sayreville/South River area but it would be great if you could confirm. I’m not having any luck searching the internet. Any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated. My next step would probably be for you to track down the certificates for both marriages when we’re all allowed to leave the house.

Thanks for doing what you do!
Kim

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Debbie September 7, 2020 at 12:06 pm

Hi Kim,

My apologies, not sure why I wasn’t notified of your comment, but just came across it now. The 1920s place codes are entirely different from those in my PDF, and the key to these codes was, unfortunately, misplaced by the state (or so they claim). I have been reconstructing the 1920s codes from records I’ve pulled, but don’t have 38 in my database. It is consistent with a location in Middlesex, though, as place 39 is New Brunswick, and place 40 is Perth Amboy. Some codes are used for more than one municipality (each town does not have its own code, in other words).

The good news is, you actually don’t need the exact place to locate the certificate. If you have the file number from the index, I can locate it. The NJ State Archives is still closed to researchers, but I will resume retrieving records once it reopens. If you would like to discuss this further, please feel free to email me – debbie[at]bringoutyerdead.com.

Debbie

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Donna May 16, 2020 at 4:53 pm

Hello . . . I need some clarification regarding the number codes used . . . What would State File #534 mean? Also Place of Marriage #3486. This is for the year 1902.
Thank you.

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Debbie September 7, 2020 at 12:07 pm

Hi. That index was printed incorrectly. The data under those two column headings was reversed. The file number is actually 3486, and that’s the key to finding the record. No place code is needed, just the year and the file number.

Debbie

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Theresa Morris July 20, 2020 at 9:03 am

Do NJ marriage and birth certificates usually have parent names and place of birth?

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Debbie September 7, 2020 at 12:00 pm

Yes, they do.

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Troy Perrotta September 6, 2020 at 4:23 pm

Hi Debbie,
I found a NJ marriage index for a my great Aunt (Pasqualina Giannatassio) who got married on 10/14/1923 it only show the grooms initials SF. ( I can’t find the grooms index)
Place MG is 22 what town does 22 represent? It also has the file #12/102.
We are doing our family tree, unfortunately all of our relatives have passed, Apparently there was a falling out between her & my great grandfather we would like to know who she married. Can you retrieve a copy of the marriage certificate.
We will pay a fee.

Thank You
Troy Perrotta

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Debbie September 7, 2020 at 11:59 am

Hi Troy,

There is no index to grooms for that time period, and the index to the 1920s place codes was apparently lost. I have, however, been reconstructing an index using the records I pull, and in checking my own database, I can tell you that place code 22 is Newark (Essex County). All that said, it’s easy enough to locate the marriage certificate from just the volume and page (vol. 12, page 102) in the year 1923.

I would be happy to retrieve a copy for you, but the NJ State Archives is currently (still) closed to the public due to COVID. You can order a copy of this record directly from the NJSA through their online form. It will take about two months for the order to be filled. Or, if you do want me to retrieve this for you once the NJSA reopens to researchers, please feel free to email me at debbie[at]bringoutyerdead.com.

Debbie

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Chris September 20, 2020 at 7:39 pm

Hi, I’ve located my great grandfather’s 2nd marriage from 1926. I found it on ancestry through the bride. They were married on 16 Jul 1926 and the place code is “3”. Any idea what 3 might refer to? They lived in Brooklyn before they got married and later lived in Lyndhurst, NJ. I would love to know exactly where they got married but “3” doesn’t match a five digit code.

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Debbie September 21, 2020 at 7:50 am

Hi Chris,

The place codes published on my website are for a later time period, but I have been reconstructing a list of the lost 1920s place codes. Should I ever complete that database, I will publish those, too. In the 1920s, a place code might be assigned to several towns in the same area, depending on the population size. In checking my database, I can tell you I have place code 3 noted as applying to both Fort Lee and Teaneck, both in Bergen County. It may also apply to other towns in Bergen County.

You don’t, by the way, need the place code to locate the marriage certificate, as the state filed them alphabetically by the groom’s surname. The volume and page number refers to the book that includes that surname, so A names always begin in volume 1. Were the NJSA open to researchers now, I could retrieve this certificate for you, but you can also order it from the NJSA via their website form.

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Chris September 21, 2020 at 8:32 am

Thank you for the response Debbie. I had a feeling there were married in Bergen County. Once the archives re-opens would you be able to retrieve a 1926 marriage? I was under the assumption they had to be ordered from the NJ Dept of Heath for that year. Do you know when the archives plan to re-open? I would much prefer to pay the smaller fee to you as opposed to ordering them direct.

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Debbie September 21, 2020 at 10:51 am

Chris, I would be happy to get the copy for you, and in normal times, can usually do so within a week of receiving your request. But as of right now, I don’t have even a hint of when the NJSA will reopen to researchers. And given I now have a backlog of 6 months of work to do there, it would be difficult to estimate when I could retrieve it for you, even were they to reopen soon.

The state websites are not current regarding which records you can access there, and there is conflicting information on the various web pages of the DOH and NJSA. I can tell you with confidence that you can order a 1926 marriage certificate from the NJ State Archives now, for a $10 fee, using their online order form. You will need to choose a location of marriage in the dropdown menu, but you can put anything in that field, it’s irrelevant (and they say so on the order form). In the comments section, be sure to include the year of marriage, and the volume and page number from the index. That’s the most important information they need to find the record for you. As of right now, it will take 2+ months for them to fill your order.

Should you want me to get this for you (again, I have no idea when I would be able to do so), or if you need anything in the future, please keep my email address handy – debbie[at]bringoutyerdead.com.

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Monique January 5, 2022 at 1:36 pm

Hi Debbie,
In the 1920-1929 index, do you have location code 12 on the list you’ve been compiling?

Thanks,
Monique

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Debbie January 5, 2022 at 10:45 pm

Hi Monique,

I have one record in my database with location code 12, and that place of marriage was Wildwood City in Cape May County. I suspect that code may be used for all of Cape May County, and not just for that small locale.

Debbie

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Tinkertron March 4, 2022 at 2:49 am

Are the codes the same when it come to the death record index? I have code 01082 and I don’t know where that would be in New Jersey.

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Debbie March 4, 2022 at 8:26 am

Yes, they are the same codes. That code, 0108, is Atlantic City.

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Carol May 5, 2022 at 9:29 am

Hi Debbie, I have, on a marriage index, the 1922, marriage of Catherine Dooley to Thomas Stevens. The place code is #29. I’m guessing the marriage took place in Union or Hudson County. Can you help me pinpoint this?

With many thanks,

Carol

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Debbie May 6, 2022 at 12:59 pm

Hi Carol,

Place code 29 is Hoboken, based on my database of record pulls. Some codes apply to more than one locality, but as far as my records show, any marriage I’ve pulled with that code has occurred in Hoboken.

The location isn’t actually required to find the record, FYI. If you need a copy of this certificate, I do retrieve vital records on a weekly basis. Feel free to email me if you ever need a record pulled (debbie[at]bringoutyerdead.com).

Debbie

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Carol June 2, 2022 at 9:06 am

Thank you, Debbie!

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Rosie August 25, 2022 at 9:02 am

“The location is identified by only the first four digits of this five-digit number.”

I’ve been tearing my hair out trying to find the place associated with 07646. If only the first four digits matter, then it’s Nutley in Essex County.

Many thanks!

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Kevin J. Olvaney December 31, 2022 at 3:15 pm

Hello Debbie ,

Do you have a copy of the Vital Record Town codes for 1878 – 1900
For example 36 is Newark , 70 is Long Branch and 83 is Paterson.

Thank you.

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Debbie December 31, 2022 at 3:53 pm

Hi Kevin. I just uploaded a copy, you can access it here: https://www.bringoutyerdead.com/genealogy-research-services/nj-place-codes-1878-1900/

Debbie

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Susan May 25, 2023 at 9:36 am

The code 0217 says East Paterson but you have it listed under Bergen County. It is in Passaic County.

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Debbie May 25, 2023 at 9:42 am

East Paterson changed its name to Elmwood Park in the early 1970s. It is, in fact, in Bergen County. You may be thinking of the Eastside neighborhood of Paterson.

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Rachel November 30, 2023 at 10:29 pm

Hi, I’m looking at an index for a marriage in NJ that occurred in 1927 but the Place MG. attribute says 30. Do you know where this could be? Thanks in advance!

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Debbie December 1, 2023 at 7:28 am

That’s Jersey City, Rachel. If you need a copy of the marriage record and aren’t local to the NJ State Archives, feel free to email me.

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