my brother died at birth. How do I find his death details?

+3 votes
My brother was still born at home. I can not find his death registered but I know he was placed in a grave with someone else, who and where I do not know . I have searched in free BMD with the surname Cox my family but no entry exists.


Any ideas?
asked in Genealogy Help by Doreen Sutton G2G1 (1.8k points)
Doreen,  Do you know what County, and State he was born in?  Was the other person a relative as well, and if so do you know their name?
My brother was born after me 16.10.1960 - before my sister 19.9.1962.  He died either at home or hospital but think former as my mother who never came to terms with the loss remembers my father taking the baby boy away.

He was 5 months old and weighed 1lb and his death would have been registered in the Macclesfield,Cheshire area as the nearest cemetery is in Macclesfield.


The other pertson was a stranger to us - unknown

3 Answers

+1 vote
Best answer
Hi Doreen,

That must have been a tough loss for your family.

Look into the vital statistics acts in the area he was born in to find out how his birth and death would have been registered. Some jurisdictions have special registries for stillbirths, and as such their names don't appear in traditional birth or death registries. Some areas don't or didn't require registration at all.

Your brother's burial in a shared grave was not uncommon for infants until recently. Some cemeteries have common areas where stillborn babies and small infants were laid to rest without markers. Occasionally, infants were buried with adults who had died around the same time. Check the BMD to see what other deaths occurred around that time, and contact cemeteries in the area to see what they can tell you.

Good luck!
answered by Erin Breen G2G6 Pilot (220k points)
selected by Allen Minix
What is vital statistics acts? I think Macclesfield Cemetery will be the place to enquire about details if it is manned and as in a few months I am planning to visit England this maybe a good time to bring a result to this enquiry.


In the BMD I searched for a COX between 16.10.1960 and 19.9.1962 my birth and my sister who followed him but got a blank.


Thank you for your help it is greatly appreciated
0 votes
The same thing happened in my family with an older brother & sister. If no relatives are alive that would know, you may be able to find some info from the hospital where your mother gave birth.
answered by Doug Lockwood G2G Astronaut (2.4m points)
Thank you for your help, I gratefully appreciate this as it is a delicate subject with even now sadness and would love to know where he is so that I can face my demons and visit him. I think he was a home birth (sudden) as he was only 5 months old and with the suggestions of others I am planning to visit Macclesfield Cemetery when I visit England in a few months to see if I can locate him or not.


Again thank you for your help
0 votes
I assume as you tried freebmd that this is a UK birth/death, if you can give me your parents names, the place or county and an approximate date I can do a findmypast lookup for you.
answered by R. G. G2G6 Pilot (212k points)
My parents were Graeme Cox and Mary Plant he was born in Macclesfield area in Cheshire.

He was 5 months old and weighed 1lb.  Born after me 16.10.1960 must have been close to my birth as I was always blamed for his death because i was breech birth and my mother talked as if she caught close to my birth but before my sister born 19.9.1962.

Thank you for your help.  Hope you have more success than me. I tried searching for any surname COX who died between these dates but hit a wall.
I have found Doreen and Leonora but no brother in between, these are the only two births recorded in Chesire with the mothers name Plant.

There is also no recorded death in Cheshire and this database is normally more reliable than freebmd who do have some gaps in their data.

Is it possible the family lived in a neighbouring county in 1961/2?

I checked the whole country for a Cox son born to a mother Plant, there were none born between you and your sister, There were six males under one year listed as dying in 1961/2 Liverpool perhaps the closest.

I have found a son Alan L. born 1964, I assume a younger brother.

Sorry I could not help further.

Doreen, myself, Unknown Cox, Leonora & Alan were all born in Macclesfield Cheshire.

  • My mother was vague as to where I could find my brother but I know she said it was local.
  • Thank you for your help, I find it strange that there is no record.  My husband has just said that because it was still born and not full term his death may not have been recorded so he would not be registered.  If this is true it is a shame that one loses a child whom one can never visit again to deal with  the loss in the future.

Again thank you

Hi Doreen. When you got to register the birth of a still born child the entries get put into a special register not the normal register. I know as I have sadly had to go through the process. The practice started in the UK in 1927 and the registers should exist for your sibling. They are probably not online due to the sensitivity of the subject. As a sibling you may be able to get a certificate. Try Contacting...

Superintendent Registrar

Macclesfield Register Office
Town Hall
Market Place
SK10 1EA



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