United States Census, 1860 - FamilySearch Historical Records
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United States Census, 1860
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|Flag of the United States of America|
|US Flag July 4, 1859 – July 3, 1861 (33 stars)|
|National Archives and Records Administration Logo|
|Record Type||Population and Slave Schedules|
|Record Group||RG 29: Records of the Bureau of the Census|
|Microfilm Publication||M653. Eighth Census of the United States, 1860. 1438 rolls.|
|Arrangement||Arrange alphabetically by state, and by county, by city, township.|
|National Archives Identifier||2353568|
|National Archives and Records Administration|
- 1 What is in This Collection?
- 2 What Can These Records Tell Me?
- 3 Collection Content
- 4 How Do I Search This Collection?
- 5 What Do I Do Next?
- 6 Known Issues
- 7 Citing This Collection
- 8 How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?
What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]
An index of population schedules listing inhabitants of the United States in 1860. The collection is from National Archive microfilm publication M653 Eighth Census of the United States,1860 and is part of Record Group 29 Records of the Bureau of the Census. Currently, data is available for Alabama (96%), Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Dakota Territory, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania (99%), Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin. All data and images have been provided by Footnote.com.
The U.S. federal census was conducted each decade from 1790-present. This information pertains to censuses conducted in 1850, 1860, and 1870.
Federal census takers were asked to record information about all those who were in each household on the census day, which was 1 June. A census taker might have visited a house on a later date, but the information he collected was supposed to be about the people who were in the house on the census day. The basic census enumeration unit was the county. Each county was divided into enumeration districts, one for each enumerator. The completed forms were sent to the Census Office in the Commerce Department in Washington D.C.
The U.S. federal census was taken at the beginning of every decade to apportion the number of representatives that a state could send to the House of Representatives in Congress. In the absence of a national system of vital registration, many vital statistics and personal questions were asked to provide a statistical profile of the nation and its states.
Population schedules consisted of large sheets with rows and columns. The schedules were arranged by place, such as township or post office. The places were not filed in any particular order. The arrangement of families on a schedule is normally in the order in which the enumerator visited the households.
Federal censuses are usually reliable, depending on the knowledge of the informant and the care of the census enumerator. Information may have been given to a census taker by any member of the family or by a neighbor. Some information may have been incorrect or deliberately falsified.
Image Visibility[edit | edit source]
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For additional information about image restrictions, please see the Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections page.
To Browse This Collection[edit | edit source]
|You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for United States Census, 1860.|
What Can These Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]
The following information may be found in these records:
- Full name
Collection Content[edit | edit source]
Sample Image[edit | edit source]
How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]
To begin your search it is helpful to know:
- The name of your ancestor
- The approximate age of your ancestor
- The state and county where your ancestor lived
- The names of family members and associates who lived nearby
Search the Index[edit | edit source]Search by name by visiting the Collection Details Page.
- Fill in the search boxes in the Search Collection section with the information you know
- Click Search to show possible matches
View the Images[edit | edit source]
View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page
- Select State
- Select County
- Select Township and/or other division to view the images
|More images are available in the FamilySearch Catalog at United States Census, 1860. Some catalog records link to multiple references. In this case, click on a reference to find a camera icon to see images.|
How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]
Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.
What Do I Do Next?[edit | edit source]
I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]
- Use the estimated age to calculate a birth date
- Use the age and residence to locate the family in church and land records
- Continue to search the index and records to identify other relatives
- When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct
- You may need to compare the information of more than one family or person to make this determination
- Be aware that, as with any index, transcription errors may occur
I Can't Find the Person I'm Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]
- Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for nicknames and abbreviated names
- Search the indexes and records of nearby localities
- Try alternative search methods such as only filling in the surname search box (or the given name search box) on the landing page leaving the other box empty and then click on search. This should return a list of everyone with that particular name. You could then browse the list for individuals with the same family number
- There is also the possibility that a family was missed in the census
Research Helps[edit | edit source]
The following articles will help you in your research for your family in the United States.
Related FamilySearch Historical Records Collections[edit | edit source]
State Census Collections
Known Issues[edit | edit source]
Citing This Collection[edit | edit source]
Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.
When looking at a record, the citation can be viewed by clicking the drop-down arrow next to Document Information.
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.
How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?[edit | edit source]
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