The surveillance of occupational injury mortality in the United States has evolved over the last century. Currently there are two different data sources used for the study of occupational injury mortality. Each system varies in methodology, leading to different census counts. We provide an overview and analysis of similarities and differences in these two systems. The National Traumatic Occupational Fatalities (NTOF) surveillance system and the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) were examined for civilian deaths at work in the United States from 1992 to 1997. There were 31,643 occupational injury mortality cases according to NTOF and 37,023 from CFOI for civilian workers 16-years and older in the United States for the 6-year period of analysis. The annual average occupational injury mortality rates were 4.5 per 100,000 full time equivalent workers from NTOF and 5.2 from CFOI. The higher capture rate by CFOI was consistent across each of the 6 years. Similar patterns for demographics, industry, and occupation, and type of incident were seen for both systems. While NTOF provides more years of data dating back to 1980, CFOI (established in 1992) provides a more comprehensive capture of occupational injury mortality and provides greater detail of the mortality incidents. The overall injury mortality patterns, however, appear to be similar between the systems.