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20 June 2012

License Does Not Guarantee A Marriage

While most couples who took out a marriage license did marry, it is always possible that they did not. If there is a record that a couple got a license, indicate in your records that it is a license date, not a marriage date. Even if they did marry, there's no guarantee that they married on the same date as the license.

And clearly indicating that the date is a license date tells others (and yourself) that the marriage record has not been located.


  1. Michael,

    Family lore is that a grandaunt of mine by the name of Jeanette McCombs was engaged to be married, and left the gentleman at the altar the day of the wedding. A year later, they became engaged again, and on the day of the 2nd wedding, he left HER at the altar.

    This likely would have taken place in Malden, Missouri in Dunklin County, where she was living at the time. I would love to discover if this was really true. Do you have any suggestions on how best to go about it?

  2. Have you looked at the local marriage records?