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Volume 3, Number 5 Mountain Press, P.O. Box 400, Signal Mountain, Tennessee 37377, 1-423-886-6369 March 24, 2011
This is the last article in a four part series concerning the census. This one deals with some of the lesser known census. Hopefully, it will give you another idea or two of somewhere to look for more information on your family.
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James L. Douthat
Census Summary, Part 4
This fourth article on the census will go beyond the decennial census authorized by the federal government. Each census serves a different purpose, and therefore, we have to understanding the concept behind each one to gain the most from them. As we have already noted, the federal government counts everyone in the United States every ten years for various reasons. In 1840 and 1890, the military records are more important than in other years until 1940 when many questions were raised about military service and employment background.
Now to look at some of the special census we can consult in our research. A state census has been taken in various states for different reasons. The reasons are sometimes vague and we will not deal with this idea, but only at what is included.The 1857 Minnesota Territory census is available in the National Archives in five printed volumes.
The 1864, 1866, 1867 and 1869 Arizona Territory is available either at the National Archives for the Secretary of State in Phoenix who has the original. The 1867 census is for Pima and Yuma Counties only.
In 1880, there was a special census of Indians not taxed for several areas. This census gives a great deal of information on the individuals and their tribal association; however, the National Archives only has four volumes of these records. These include the Indians near Fort Simcoe and Tulalip in the Washington Territory, those near Fort Yates in the Dakota Territory and those Indians in California.
The next census of great value is the 1885 Colorado, Dakota Territory, Florida, Nebraska and New Mexico Territory. The questions on the schedule were very much like the 1880 Federal Census and most are available from the National Archives. The Dakota census, with several counties missing, is found in Bismarck at the State Historical Society.
In 1907, Oklahoma took a census for Seminole County, but it is not public record yet.
Now letís look at the additional census taken each decade by the federal census takers. The main one is the Mortality Schedule. In 1850, it was thought that more vital information was needed on each individual. Therefore, a census was developed to gather information on each individual and so began a collection of data on those who died within the prior twelve months of the census year. The 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 and with limited census of 1885 includes this mortality schedule. In 1918-1919, this census was taken out of Federal custody and each state could request their census records returned. Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Tennessee and the District of Columbia did not request the records, so they were sent to the DAR Library in Washington, DC. The DAR has since indexed these. The main problem with this census is they account for only about 13% of the persons in the state as they deal only with those who have died within the last twelve months.
In addition to the population schedules, there was a Slave Schedule taken in 1860 to determine where slaves were most prominent in the population. Slaves had been counted with the white population since 1790 with numbers ranging from about 700,000 in 1790 to about four million in 1860. All states that were created prior to this time had slaves. Many states were just territories prior to this time and were not in the count. In New York, there were 10,088 slaves listed in 1820, but by 1830 this number had dropped to 75 since the state outlawed the ownership of slaves.
There is a Manufacturing Schedule and Agriculture Schedule giving primarily the types and kinds of each event. This can be of interest when one deals with a family member who was into each field of labor. If your ancestor was not into manufacturing, then you might not care much for the number of tons of steel produced or the number of saddles made that year. However, if you do have an ancestor in 1840 or 1850 listed in that field, it would pay you to look into the schedule for their information.
Beginning with 1850, there has been a series of publications listing a great deal of the census records and tabulations of the various information. These latter publications are found in each congressional district at one of the major libraries. Many libraries have not taken care of these as they should and the older ones might be missing. I have four volumes in my library because some public library decided to discard them. If you are working on a county history or history of some sort, these records are well worth the time and effort to look into them for your research. You will discover a great deal about the local area from the information given here. The following is some of what you can find historically:1860 Woodford County, Kentucky - had 3 Methodist churches with 1,000 aggregated accommodations - 6,200 value of property - 7 Presbyterian churches with 2,100 aggregated accommodations - 11,500 value of property. There were no Cumberland Presbyterians, United Presbyterians, Universalist or Roman Catholic in the county. There was one Union Church with 300 aggregated accommodations and 500 property value. The Baptist, Christian, Episcopal and Lutherans were given on another page of interest, the Baptist had seven churches and the Christian has six with none for the Episcopal or Lutherans.
Keep in mind that your ancestor might not show all of their records in the population schedule, so look into the other schedules that are available to complete the picture of their lives.
Hopefully, this four part series has given you some new ideas of places to look for more information in the census. Our next Gazette will look into the Ministerís Returns for weddings. These are often overlooked, but in many cases they are the only record of a marriage. Happy Hunting!
We have added several new books to our website. Please click below to see a complete listing of all new books. We have also highlighted just a few.
Listing of all New Books
New Missouri Books
Carter County, Missouri Records
36 Pages, Full Name Index for 1,384 names, Soft Cover, Reprinted 2011
Contains a brief history of the county; Marriage Book A 1861-1881 with officials; Guardian and Curator Bonds 1861-1890; Will Book A 1872-1900.
Gasconade County, Missouri Records
104 Pages, Full Name Index, Soft Cover, Reprinted 2011
In this volume you will find a brief history of the county, marriage records 1822-1841, County tax list for 1828, Marriage Book A 1841-1848 and Book B 1848-1855, Abstract of Wills and Administration Bonds 1821-1860, Early Birth Register 1863-1891 and Old Salem and Leach Cemeteries.
Scotland County, Missouri Records
56 Pages, Full Name Index, Soft Cover, Reprinted 2011
This volume has a brief history of the county as well as the "Old Settlers Association"; Marriage Book A 1841-1857 with officials; Abstract of Will Book B 1846-1867 and Death Records 1883-1888.
New South Carolina Book
Abbeville, South Carolina 1820 Census
62 Pages, 8.5"x11", Soft Cover, Full Name Index, Reprint 2011
New Tennessee Books
Bledsoe County, TN Deed Book A 1807-1812
146 Pages, 8.5"x11", Soft Cover, Full Name Index, Reprinted 2010
Bledsoe County, TN Deed Book B 1812-1820
67 Pages, 8.5"x11", Soft Cover, Full Name Index, Reprinted 2011
Bledsoe County, TN Deed Book C 1817-1821
86 Pages, 8.5"x11", Soft Cover, Full Name Index, Reprinted 2011
If you have any questions or suggestions for future editions, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.