Kentucky started keeping birth and death records in 1852, stopped in 1862, started again in 1874, but didn't get serious about it until 1 January 1911. Before that date, births and deaths were recorded at the county level and copies were forwarded to the state once a year. Surviving birth records are mostly for the years 1852-1861, 1874-1879 and 1900-1910. Because of official indifference and neglect, no records are extant for many of the years before 1911.
People lacking official certificates could file delayed birth certificates with the state. This became common starting around 1940 due to the requirements of Social Security and military service. According to Roseann Hogan, "Kentuckians have filed over a half-million of these delayed certificates... Social Security, for a time, accepted completed certificates that were not filed with the Department of Vital Statistics in Frankfort. Therefore, it is possible, that even if no official certificate can be found in Frankfort, a certificate may have been filed with Social Security or other government agencies." (Kentucky Ancestry, page 79)
Delayed birth certificates contain name, date of birth, place of birth, sex, race, parents' names, ages, etc. similar to regular birth certificates. Plus two older witnesses, one related one unrelated.
In Kentucky, the Department of Vital Statistics has most of the delayed birth certificates. There is an index on microfiche which can only be consulted at the Department. So far I have been unable to acquire a copy. The Kentucky Historical Society also has 45 rolls of microfilmed delayed birth certificates. According to Ms. Hogan KHS also has an index (I haven't seen this one). My impression, gathered from searching for Owsley County birth records, is that there is no single index to all the delayed birth certificates and that the KHS rolls are not included in the VS microfiche. I have no idea what Social Security has done with their certificates.
This book is based on the computerized index from the Kentucky Health Data Branch. None of the 45,000 State entries seem to be in the KHS rolls or the VS microfiche?!? This index has name, date of birth, county, mother's maiden name, volume & certificate number. Copies of certificates may be ordered from the Department of Vital Statistics, 275 Main St., Frankfort KY 40601. Cost is $9 each. Purchase birth certs: http://chfs.ky.gov/dph/vital/birthcert.htm
One final note: The computer index is ALL CAPS. I have changed this to make it more readable.
[Note: According to the Kentucky Historical Society:
...delayed birth certificates are only available from the Department of Vital Statistics - see website above.. The KHS has a collection of 44 rolls of microfilm that are labeled "Special Certificates of Births and Affidavits, Births occurring prior to 1911". These are applications that were rejected by the Department of Vital Statistics. These rolls are in alphabetical order and contains the applications and any proof of their date of birth. They can contain marriage records, Bible records, statements of relatives, etc. The Boyd County Public Library also has a copy of these microfilm. from Charles A. Barker]
ABLETT Violet M 22 May 1908 Balld JACOBS Etta 213 48579
ADAMS Anna L 2 Aug 1908 Balld OLIVER Clara 234 49433
ADAMS William H 6 Mar 1904 Balld STOVALL Maude 184 47416
ALLCOCK Mary 17 Jul 1910 Balld NEWTON Willie 254 50202