March 7, 2008

Missouri Death Records

I have previously visited the Missouri Digital Heritage website. I seem to recall that when it first appeared on-line I was able to download certificates in pdf format without any difficulty.

However, when I visited this morning I found that downloading and viewing the death certificates is not so straight forward.

Instead of downloading a pdf file of the selected certificate, it downloads a file named DispPDF.aspx. Of course, my pdf reader would not open the file, and there is not a reader for any file with extension aspx.

By playing around with the file I found that I could download and view it by changing the name from that offered by the website to something useful. I typically name my files using the last name first name death cert, then add the pdf extension (e.g., Coffey, John J Death Cert.pdf). After renaming the file I could view it with my pdf reader.

I'm unsure if I'm doing something incorrectly or, if the script used to send the file to me is in error. Please write to me at the above e-mail address if you have found a shorter way to download the certificates.

By the way, I no longer use the free Adobe PDF reader to read these files. It has grown too bulky, always wants to "call home" to check for updates, etc. I now use the free PDF-XChange viewer. Among other options, this viewer allows users to place annotations into the pdf file. Check it out at Tracker Software Products. You may also want to consider the free Foxit PDF viewer. You can find that one at Foxit Software.

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