The coroner’s office investigates all unnatural deaths, homicides, suicides, and accidents. The death of a child or younger person or a death of anyone in a public location is included in the coroner’s records. Currently the St. Louis City coroner investigates about 1200 cases per year.
Most modern coroner records contain all or some of the following information: name of deceased, address or location of body, date of death, age, marital status, country of birth, occupation, residence (maybe the same as location of body), and name of the coroner. The record usually provides the cause of death and the names and statements from witnesses, if any.
There was a coroner’s office in St. Louis prior to 1876, with all unnatural deaths processed at this location. Those records are available at the Clark Avenue address listed below or on microfilm. The Missouri Digital Heritage Coroners’ Inquest Database is an index of coroners’ records from several Missouri counties, including the city of St. Louis.
After 1876, there were two coroners’ offices. Contact the St. Louis City office or the St. Louis County office to obtain the record you need. To expedite your search, you need to determine the place of death, either the city or county. Coroners’ records are public.
Today, both St. Louis city and county have medical examiners, and their records are considered private and available only to next of kin. The St. Louis City coroners’ microfilmed records start in 1846 and continue to 1900. Photocopies of records after 1900 are available from the office.
From 1845 to 1876, all city and county records are in one location. After 1876, they include only the city records. Coroners’ records are available by mail. Send your request to
St. Louis Medical Examiner’s Office
1300 Clark Ave.
St. Louis, Missouri 63101-2718
St. Louis County records starting in 1877 are not on the internet or microfilmed. Contact the St. Louis County Medical Examiner’s Office to obtain a copy of these records.
St. Louis County Medical Examiner’s Office
6059 N. Hanley Road
St. Louis, Missouri 63134
Northcott, Dennis. St. Louis County Coroners’ Records, 1826–1873. St. Louis: Missouri Historical Society, 1997.
Last modified: 19-Jun-2021 11:22