The CGS Names Index has entries from several databases, described below with the corresponding code that will appear on each line of the search results:
Information for some individuals may be limited to name and locality. For others, a complete biography including a photo may be available. Information comes from over 50 state, county, and local histories in our collection.
Code: EARLY DEATHS
This file contains pre-1905 deaths in San Francisco. Information usually includes name, age (yrs-mos-days), place of birth, date and place of death and often cause of death. Some entries include residence, occupation, name of the informant, mortuary used and place of burial. Death ledgers and death certificates from pre-earthquake San Francisco cover 1865-1873, 1882-1889, 1894-1896, and 1901-1904, but some of these years are incomplete. Also included in this code are names of individuals whose death notices appeared in the San Francisco Call newspaper during the years 1902-1904. If a name of interest is found, we may be able to locate an obituary or mortuary record as part of our extended research service.
CGS holds the original ledgers from the IOOF Crematorium in San Francisco, which operated from 1895 through 1911. Digitizations provide name, place of birth, age (yrs-mos-days), date and place of death, cause of death, name of informant and mortuary used. Many entries also include newspaper death notices; some date to disinterments of very early burials. Mortuary information, both here and in cemetery records (below) may lead to additional information that can be unearthed in our extended research service.
Name, date of burial, lot location and owner, and mortuary used are recorded in our holdings of original burial ledgers of the old San Francisco IOOF Cemetery in which the crematorium was located. The ledgers, which have been digitized, cover all the years of operation, 1865 - 1911, and are particularly important for locating information on immigrant Germans. When remains were removed to other cemeteries, the place and date of removal is noted above the original entry. CGS also holds lot maps that can be searched as part of our extended research service.
Extractions from the government document List of Pensioners on the Roll, January 1, 1883, cover the entire state. Information includes name of pensioner, cause for which pensioned, amount of monthly payment, date of original allowance and post office address.
Individuals in this file were members of The Association of Territorial Pioneers of California. Information includes name, place of birth (often detailed), age or date of birth, occupation, residence, date of arrival in California, route traveled and for some, details of the trip to California. The Association was a male lineage organization formed in 1876; membership was based upon arrival before statehood, 9 September 1850. If a member died before the organization disbanded in the early 1890s, the date of death and a reference to a memorial obituary in a second ledger is entered.
When an estate is probated, all the actions taken are reported to the court and entered by the clerk into a list called a "Register of Actions". We hold digitizations of the San Francisco Registers begun after the 1906 earthquake and continuing through March 1942. Some represent guardianships (coded M) or proceedings of insanity or incompetence (coded I), but most are conventional probates (coded D). There are more than 100,000 cases, including a few that remained open until the 1980s.
If you order a probate lookup, you will receive a copy of the Register for your person of interest. The estate documents themselves, including the will, if there is one, are available through the San Francisco Superior Court, where our extended research service can review them and make copies of genealogically relevant portions for you.
Several ledgers and reports from the San Francisco First Congregational Church survived the earthquake and fire. CGS holds extractions of baptisms (1851-1948), marriages (broken years 1897-1941), memorial services (1915-1917) and membership rolls indicating previous residence (1849-1909). In addition we hold extracts of membership rolls from the defunct Third Congregational Church (1863-1886).
Code: 1890 SF-VOTERS
The 1890 Great Register of Voters for San Francisco City and County contains name, age, place of birth (U.S. state/foreign country), occupation, home address and place and year naturalized if applicable for more than 59,000 men living in San Francisco in 1890. Note that the information in this publication is slightly more detailed than in the 1890 California Great Register of Voters publication coded as CA-GRV in the other part of lookups (below) and for common names focuses on only San Francisco. (Note: This code was formerly FRAN)