United States Census 1870

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Indexes and Images[edit | edit source]

The 1870 census was the ninth census taken by the United States.The census began on June 1, and was largely completed by January of 1871. Enumerators counted a national population of approximately 38,500,000 and was the first census to identify all African Americans by name. Census takers counted every person in each family on the 1st day of June. In addition to the population schedules,mortality, agriculture, manufacture ans social statistics schedules may also be available. The census is searchable on FamilySearch see United States Census, 1870. Census records are part of Record Group 29 Records of the Bureau of the Census at the National Archives.

Ninth Census Schedules - Forms

Finding Aids

Research Helps

Content[edit | edit source]

The 1870 Census was taken beginning 1 June 1870, for five months. The following information was recorded by the census taker:

  • Name: of every person whose place of abode on the 1st day of June, 1870, was in this family.
  • Age:at last birthday. If under 1 year, give months in fractions, thus 3/12.
  • Sex: (M) Male); (F) Female
  • Color: (W) White; (Black (B); (M) Mulatto; (C) Chinese; (I) Indian.
  • Profession, occupation, trade of each person, male and female.
  • Value real estate
  • Value personal property
  • Birthplace: state or territory of the United States, or the country, if of foreign birth
  • Father foreign born

  • Mother foreign born
  • Month born in census year: state month.
  • Month married in census year: state month.
  • School in census year
  • Can’t read or write
  • Deaf, dumb, blind, insane, idiotic
  • Male eligible to vote
  • Male Citizens of United States of 21 years of age and upwards.
  • Male Citizens of United States of 21 years of age and upwards whose right to vote is denied or abridged on other grounds than rebellion or other crime.

Value[edit | edit source]

The 1870 census can be used to:

  • Identify Missing in 1870—may be casualty of Civil War
  • Parents of foreign birth may indicate naturalization records
  • Identify Color (Origins) —white (W), black (B), Chinese (C), Indian (I), mulatto (M)
  • First census to identify all African Americans by name.

1850-1930 Search Tips: http://www.archives.gov/research/census/1850-1930.html

Unique Features and Problems[edit | edit source]

  1. Asked if the father or mother of the individual were foreign born
  2. Asked if born within the year and to give month
  3. Asked if a male citizen over 21 years of age
  4. Asked if a male citizen over 21 years of age, who has had their rights to vote denied other than because of the grounds of rebellion or crime.
  5. If a male individual is missing in this Census, it may serve as a clue that he may have been a casualty of the Civil War
  6. The census was to list only those abiding in the house as of June 1 (those who died or children born after June 1 may not have been accounted for by the enumerator if they counted the household after that date)
  7. It has been said that many people were missed in the South
  8. Dwelling houses numbered in order of visitation.
  9. Families numbered in order of visitation
  10. Name every person living in household
  11. Children under 1—months as fractions
  12. 1st census to ask if parents of foreign birth

States and Territories Covered[edit | edit source]

States - Population Schedules

Mortality, Agricultural and Manufacturer's Schedules

Missing Records[edit | edit source]

Where to Find the Records[edit | edit source]

The 1870 Federal Census is available online.


Websites[edit | edit source]

1790-2000 Info: http://www.census.gov/prod/2000pubs/cff-2.pdf

1850-1930 Search Tips: http://www.archives.gov/research/census/1850-1930.html

National Archives - Catalog

References[edit | edit source]

1. Szucs, Loretto Dennis and Sandra Hargreaves Luebking. The Source: A Guide book to American Genealogy. 3rd ed. (Provo, UT: Ancestry, 2006.)