If it inspires you to join the fun, we always need more volunteers. Go to the Volunteer Opportunities page on our website https://stlgs.org/about-us-2/volunteer-opportunities for all the information you need to get involved. In addition, if you are affiliated with a congregation that has records to share, please let us know so we can reach out to you and your church or synagogue leaders.
While working with twentieth-century death certificates, you may have noticed that many have large numbers written on them somewhere in the "cause of death" section. Perhaps you thought these were just random numbers, but it turns out, they are not. Begun in the late 1890s, these numbers are part of the International Code of Diseases or ICD, and they may reveal more information on how your ancestors died, especially if the handwriting and/or the spelling on the certificate is difficult to decipher. Go to http://familyhistorydaily.com/free-genealogy-resources/icd-codes-death-certificates-genealogy/?platform=hootsuite for an easy-to understand explanation of the coding system (try not to get sidetracked by all the ads on the page, though) and then click on the link to find the codes or go directly to http://www.wolfbane.com/icd/index.html/. Be sure to choose the link that corresponds to the revision closest in time prior to the person's death for the most accurate information.
In the following example, note that the person died in 1912 of "chronic bronchitis with pulmonary abscess." If we use the revised code for 1909, the closest date prior to 1912, we can see that the number 96 stands for asthma, which adds more information to the cause of death.
(Many thanks to our Twitter expert, Laura Mackinson, for alerting us to both these websites.)