Skip to Main Content

HWST 115 - Moʻokūʻauhau: Hawaiian Genealogies: Birth Records

Background Information

The first laws requiring reporting of births and marriages began in 1842, but many of those early records have not survived. In 1896, the Department of Health was given the responsibility for registering births.

The Department of Health has the following records of birth:

  • Hawaiʻi: 1877-date
  • Kauai & Niihau: 1896-date
  • Maui & Molokai: 1896-date
  • Oahu: 1863-date

From 1911-1972, a person born in Hawaiʻi but whose birth was not registered could apply for a delayed certificate, commonly known as a "Delayed (Hawaiian) Birth Certificate". Births prior to 1911 are included and may be obtained from the Department of Health.

The Research Process

Getting Started

Microfilm copies of selected vital records indexes are available at the Hawaii State Library (Main Library), located at 478 South King Street in Honolulu, Hawaii and Pacific Collection. Call (808) 586-3535 for further information.

Indexes to birth records for 1896-1909 are available at the Hawaii State Library (Main Library, Hilo, Kahului, Kaneohe, Lihue, and Kailua-Kona), and the University of Hawaii Library, Hawaiian Collection. 

The Genealogical Society of Utah’s Family History Centers in Hawaii also have microfilm copies of selected vital records.  

Birth Records are located at the Department of Health. The application to obtain a copy of a birth certificate requires knowing: the name on the certificate, the date and place of birth, and names of each parent.

@ Hawai'i State Archives

The Hawaiʻi State Archives has the following birth records resources

  • Card Catalog of Birth and Marriage Notices Published in Hawaii Newspapers, 1850-1950
  • Birth Records from the following islands of the following years
    • Hawaiʻi: 1853-1861; 1869-1897
    • Maui: 1860-1864; 1899
    • Niihau: 1853-1856
    • Oahu: 1852-1885

@ Hawaii State Library

The Hawaii State Library (478 S. King St.) has the following birth records resources

  • Delayed Birth Certificates Index
  • Territorial Hawaiʻi Birth Index books by: Mother, Father, and Child 1896-1900 (all islands)
    Location: behind Hawaiian Collection reference desk
  • Birth Index, from 1909-1914 to 1946-1948
    Location: microfilm section
  • Birth Certificates, from 1909-1911 to January 1921-April 1921
    Location: microfilm section
Windward Community College Library • 45-720 Keaʻahala Rd. • Kāneʻohe, HI 96744
Content: Creative Commons License Windward Community College Library
Alma Staff Login