Difference between revisions of "Massachusetts State Census, 1855 (FamilySearch Historical Records)"

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{{Record_Search_article|CID=CID1459985 |title=Massachusetts State Census, 1855|location=United States}}<br>
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| link1=[[United States Genealogy|United States]]
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| link2=
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| link3=
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| link4=
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| link5=[[Massachusetts, United States Genealogy|Massachusetts]]
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== Record Description  ==
 
  
This census was taken beginning June 1, 1855.  
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{{US State HR Infobox
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|CID=CID1459985
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|title=Massachusetts State Census, 1855
 +
|location=Massachusetts
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| LOC_01 = Massachusetts
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| LOC_02 =
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| LOC_02_type =
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| LOC_03 = 
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| loc_map = 
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| state_loc_map = US Locator Massachusetts.png
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| State_flag = Massachusetts flag.png
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| record_type =State Census
 +
| start_year = 1855
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| end_year =
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| FS_URL_01 = [[Massachusetts, United States Genealogy|Massachusetts]]
 +
| FS_URL_02 = [[Massachusetts Genealogy Guide]] 
 +
| FS_URL_03 = [[Massachusetts Census|Massachusetts Census]]
 +
| FS_URL_04 = [[Massachusetts Archives and Libraries]]
 +
| FS_URL_05 = [https://familysearch.org/search/collection/1410399?collectionNameFilter=false Massachusetts State Census, 1865]
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| FS_URL_06 =
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| FS_URL_07 = 
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| FS_URL_08 = 
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| FS_URL_09 = 
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| FS_URL_10 = 
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| RW_URL_01 = [http://www.censusfinder.com/massachusetts.htm Census Finder]
 +
| RW_URL_02 = [http://www.sec.state.ma.us/arc/arcgen/genidx.htm#census Massachusetts Archive] 
 +
| RW_URL_03 = [http://www.newhorizonsgenealogicalservices.com/ma-census.htm New Horizons Genealogy] 
 +
| RW_URL_04 = [http://www.recordsbase.com/?act=census&fc=86&fck=massachusetts&utm_source=adw&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=census&creativeid=g10181376224&utm_term=massachusetts%20census&group=adw-massachusetts-census&network=g&site=&ran=1817387801380216582&target=&aceid=&asl=%5bname%5d&pos=1o1&mob=&match=b&location=massachusetts&gclid=CKHY_Kv3_LUCFZE-Mgodr3wAHA Records Base]
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| RW_URL_05 = 
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| custodian = 
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}}
  
The census schedules consisted of large sheets with rows and columns. The schedules were arranged by street in order of visitation. The census schedules are well preserved at the Massachusetts State Archives and they have been microfilmed.
+
== What is in the Collection? ==
  
In 1855, the legislature directed that a census be taken on June 1 of that year and every 10 years thereafter. The census schedules were delivered to the State Secretary and eventually sent to the State Archives for safe keeping. The census schedules are well preserved at the Massachusetts State Archives and they have been microfilmed.  
+
The collection consists of an index and images of population schedules listing inhabitants of the State of Massachusetts in 1855. This project was indexed in partnership with the New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS).  
  
For a list of records by localities and dates currently published in this collection, select the [https://www.familysearch.org/search/image/index#uri=https%3A//api.familysearch.org/records/collection/1459985/waypoints Browse].
+
=== General Information About These Records  ===
  
The state census of Massachusetts was taken in order to enumerate the population for representation purposes.  
+
In 1855, the legislature directed that a census be taken on June 1 of that year and every 10 years thereafter. The census schedules were delivered to the State Secretary and eventually sent to the State Archives for safe keeping. The census schedules are well preserved at the Massachusetts State Archives and they have been microfilmed.  
  
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.  
+
The state censuses of Massachusetts were taken in order to enumerate the population for representation purposes. 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.  
  
=== Citation for This Collection ===
+
===To Browse this Collection===
  
The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Records collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records.<br>
+
{{Collection_Browse_Link
 +
|CID=CID1459985
 +
|title=Massachusetts State Census, 1855
 +
|}}
  
{{Collection citation | text= "Massachusetts State Census, 1855." Index and Images. <i>FamilySearch</i>. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing Secretary of the Commonwealth. State Archives, Boston.}}
+
== Collection Content ==
 +
=== Sample Image ===
  
[[Massachusetts 1855 State Census (FamilySearch Historical Records)#Citation_Example_for_a_Record_Found_in_This_Collection|Suggested citation format for a record in this collection.]]
+
<gallery widths="160px" heights="120px" perrow="3">
 +
Image:Massachusetts 1855 Census.jpg|Massachusetts 1855 Census
 +
</gallery>
  
== Record Content  ==
+
==What Can this Collection Tell Me?==
  
Genealogical information in the census:  
+
The census includes:  
 
 
[[Image:Massachusetts 1855 Census.jpg|thumb|right|Massachusetts 1855 Census.jpg]]
 
  
 
*Name  
 
*Name  
Line 36: Line 75:
 
*Birthplace
 
*Birthplace
  
== How to Use the Records  ==
+
== How Do I Search the Collection? ==
 +
Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:
 +
*The name of your ancestor
 +
*The approximate age or birth year of your ancestor
 +
*The residence of your ancestor
 +
*The names of other family members and their relationships
 +
=== Search the Index ===
 +
{{Search Collection Link
 +
| CID=CID1459985
 +
}}
 +
 
 +
Keep in mind:
 +
 
 +
*There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
 +
*You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.
 +
*Your ancestor may have used different names, or variations of their name, throughout their life.
 +
*If your ancestor used an alias or a nickname, be sure to check for those alternate names.
 +
*Even though these indexes are very accurate they may still contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.
 +
=== View the Images ===
 +
View images in this collection by visiting the '''{{RecordSearch|1459985|Browse Page|access=browse}}''':
 +
#Select the appropriate '''County'''
 +
#Select the appropriate '''Town, Ward''' which takes you to the images.
  
Begin your search by finding your ancestors in the census index. Use the locator information in the index (such as page number or family number) to locate your ancestors in the census. Some on-line indexes, such as indexes to FamilySearch Historical Records, will take you directly to an image. Compare the information in the census to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. 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.  
+
=== How Do I Analyze the Results? ===
 +
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 [[Use_Appropriate_Forms#Prepare_a_Research_Log | research log]].
  
When you have located your ancestor in the census, carefully evaluate each piece of information about them. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors.
 
  
For example:
+
For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line article [[FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks]].
  
*Use the age listed to determine an approximate birth date. This date along with the place of birth can help you find a birth record. Birth records often list biographical and marital details about the parents and close relatives other than the immediate family.  
+
{{Tip | More images are available in the FamilySearch Catalog at [https://familysearch.org/search/catalog/1459985 Massachusetts, state census, 1855]. Some catalog records link to multiple references. In this case, click on a reference to find a camera icon to see images.}}
*Birth places can tell you former residences and can help to establish a migration pattern for the family.
 
*Use the race information to find records related to that ethnicity such as records of the Freedman’s Bureau or Indian censuses.
 
*Use the naturalization information to find their naturalization papers in the county court records. It can also help you locate immigration records such as a passenger list which would usually be kept records at the port of entry into the United States.
 
*If they are subject to military service they may have military files in the State or National Archives.
 
*Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment or school records; children’s occupations are often listed as “at school.
 
  
It is often helpful to extract the information on all families with the same surname in the same general area. If the surname is uncommon, it is likely that those living in the same area were related.
+
==What Do I Do Next?==
  
Be sure to extract all families before you look at other records. The relationships given will help you to organize family groups. The family groupings will help you identify related families when you discover additional information in other records.  
+
When you have located your ancestor in the census, carefully evaluate each piece of information about them. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Print or download a copy of the record, or extract the genealogical information needed.
  
Some other helpful tips to keep in mind are:
+
=== I Found Who the Person I Was Looking For, What Now? ===
  
 +
*Use the age listed to determine an approximate birth date. This date along with the place of birth can help you find a birth record. Birth records often list biographical and marital details about the parents and close relatives other than the immediate family.
 +
*Use the race information to find records related to that ethnicity such as records of the Freedman’s Bureau or Indian censuses.
 +
*Use the naturalization information to find their naturalization papers in the county court records. It can also help you locate immigration records such as a passenger list which would usually be kept records at the port of entry into the United States.
 +
*Birth places can tell you former residences and can help to establish a migration pattern for the family.
 +
*If they are subject to military service they may have military files in the State or National Archives.
 +
*Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment or school records; children’s occupations are often listed as “at school.”
 +
*It is often helpful to extract the information on all families with the same surname in the same general area. If the surname is uncommon, it is likely that those living in the same area were related.
 +
*Be sure to extract all families before you look at other records. The relationships given will help you to organize family groups. The family groupings will help you identify related families when you discover additional information in other records.
 
*Married family members may have lived nearby but in a separate household so you may want to search an entire town, neighboring towns, or even a county.  
 
*Married family members may have lived nearby but in a separate household so you may want to search an entire town, neighboring towns, or even a county.  
 
*You may be able to identify an earlier generation if elderly parents were living with or close by a married child.  
 
*You may be able to identify an earlier generation if elderly parents were living with or close by a married child.  
Line 63: Line 126:
 
*The census may identify persons for whom other records do not exist.
 
*The census may identify persons for whom other records do not exist.
  
To search the collection image by image select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page <br> ⇒Select the appropriate "County" <br> ⇒Select the appropriate "Town,Ward" which takes you to the images.
+
=== I Can't Find the Person I'm Looking For, What Now? ===
  
Look at the images one by one comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine if the image relates to them. You may need to look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination. Keep in mind:<br>• There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.<br>• You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.<br>• Your ancestor may have used different names or variations of their name throughout their life.  
+
*Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for alias names, nicknames and abbreviated names.
 +
*Search for the marriage record of the marriage partner if known.
 +
*Check for a different index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume. Local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records.
 +
*Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.  
 +
*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 that may be your ancestor.
 +
*There is also the possibility that a family was missed in the census.
  
 
For a summary of this information see the wiki article: [[United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records)|United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records)]].  
 
For a summary of this information see the wiki article: [[United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records)|United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records)]].  
  
<br>
+
{{Tip|Don't overlook {{FHL|Massachusetts, State Census Records|keywords|disp}} items in the FamilySearch Library Catalog.}}
  
 
== Known Issues with This Collection  ==
 
== Known Issues with This Collection  ==
Line 75: Line 143:
 
{{HR Known Issues}}For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached [[Massachusetts, State Census, 1855 (FamilySearch Historical Records)/Known Issues|Wiki article]]. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to [mailto:support@familysearch.org support@familysearch.org] Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.  
 
{{HR Known Issues}}For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached [[Massachusetts, State Census, 1855 (FamilySearch Historical Records)/Known Issues|Wiki article]]. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to [mailto:support@familysearch.org support@familysearch.org] Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.  
  
== Related Websites  ==
+
== Citing This Collection ==
 
 
*[http://www.censusfinder.com/massachusetts.htm Census Finder]
 
*[http://www.sec.state.ma.us/arc/arcgen/genidx.htm#census Massachusetts Archive]
 
*[http://www.newhorizonsgenealogicalservices.com/ma-census.htm New Horizons Genealogy]
 
*[http://www.recordsbase.com/?act=census&fc=86&fck=massachusetts&utm_source=adw&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=census&creativeid=g10181376224&utm_term=massachusetts%20census&group=adw-massachusetts-census&network=g&site=&ran=1817387801380216582&target=&aceid=&asl=%5bname%5d&pos=1o1&mob=&match=b&location=massachusetts&gclid=CKHY_Kv3_LUCFZE-Mgodr3wAHA Records Base]
 
 
 
== Related Wiki Articles  ==
 
 
 
*[[Massachusetts]]
 
*[[Massachusetts Census|Massachusetts Census]]
 
 
 
== Contributions to This Article  ==
 
 
 
{{Contributor invite}}<br>
 
 
 
== Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections  ==
 
 
 
When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.
 
  
A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the wiki article [[Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections]].  
+
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.
  
=== Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection  ===
+
;Collection Citation:
 +
{{Collection_citation | text="Massachusetts State Census, 1855." Database with images. <i>FamilySearch</i>. http://FamilySearch.org : 14 June 2016. Citing Secretary of the Commonwealth. State Archives, Boston.
 +
}}<br>
 +
{{Record_Citation}}<br>
 +
{{Image_Citation}}<br>
  
"Massachusetts, State Census, 1855," index and images, ''FamilySearch'' (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MQW5-NCJ&nbsp;: accessed 22 May 2012), Ellen L Phillips in household of Ebenezer Phillips, Williamsburg, Hampshire, Massachusetts; citing Massachusetts State Census Records, FHL microfilm 000,953,947; Secretary of the Commonwealth, Massachusetts State Archives, Boston Massachusetts, United states.
+
== How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki? ==
  
[[Category:Massachusetts|Census]]
+
{{Contributor invite}}

Latest revision as of 12:03, 19 September 2017

United States
Massachusetts


Access the Records
Massachusetts State Census, 1855 .
CID1459985
{{{CID2}}}
{{{CID3}}}
{{{CID4}}}
{{{CID5}}}
{{{CID6}}}
{{{CID7}}}
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Massachusetts, United States
Massachusetts flag.png
Flag of Massachusetts
US Locator Massachusetts.png
Location of Massachusetts
Record Description
Record Type State Census
Collection years 1855
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites


What is in the Collection?

The collection consists of an index and images of population schedules listing inhabitants of the State of Massachusetts in 1855. This project was indexed in partnership with the New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS).

General Information About These Records

In 1855, the legislature directed that a census be taken on June 1 of that year and every 10 years thereafter. The census schedules were delivered to the State Secretary and eventually sent to the State Archives for safe keeping. The census schedules are well preserved at the Massachusetts State Archives and they have been microfilmed.

The state censuses of Massachusetts were taken in order to enumerate the population for representation purposes. 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.

To Browse this Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Massachusetts State Census, 1855.

Collection Content

Sample Image

What Can this Collection Tell Me?

The census includes:

  • Name
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Race
  • Occupation
  • Birthplace

How Do I Search the Collection?

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

  • The name of your ancestor
  • The approximate age or birth year of your ancestor
  • The residence of your ancestor
  • The names of other family members and their relationships

Search the Index

Search by name by visiting the Collection Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes on the Collection Page with the information you have
  2. Click Search to show possible matches


Keep in mind:

  • There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.
  • Your ancestor may have used different names, or variations of their name, throughout their life.
  • If your ancestor used an alias or a nickname, be sure to check for those alternate names.
  • Even though these indexes are very accurate they may still contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.

View the Images

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:

  1. Select the appropriate County
  2. Select the appropriate Town, Ward which takes you to the images.

How Do I Analyze the Results?

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.


For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line article FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.

What Do I Do Next?

When you have located your ancestor in the census, carefully evaluate each piece of information about them. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Print or download a copy of the record, or extract the genealogical information needed.

I Found Who the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?

  • Use the age listed to determine an approximate birth date. This date along with the place of birth can help you find a birth record. Birth records often list biographical and marital details about the parents and close relatives other than the immediate family.
  • Use the race information to find records related to that ethnicity such as records of the Freedman’s Bureau or Indian censuses.
  • Use the naturalization information to find their naturalization papers in the county court records. It can also help you locate immigration records such as a passenger list which would usually be kept records at the port of entry into the United States.
  • Birth places can tell you former residences and can help to establish a migration pattern for the family.
  • If they are subject to military service they may have military files in the State or National Archives.
  • Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment or school records; children’s occupations are often listed as “at school.”
  • It is often helpful to extract the information on all families with the same surname in the same general area. If the surname is uncommon, it is likely that those living in the same area were related.
  • Be sure to extract all families before you look at other records. The relationships given will help you to organize family groups. The family groupings will help you identify related families when you discover additional information in other records.
  • Married family members may have lived nearby but in a separate household so you may want to search an entire town, neighboring towns, or even a county.
  • You may be able to identify an earlier generation if elderly parents were living with or close by a married child.
  • You may be able to identify a younger generation if a young married couple still lived with one of their sets of parents.
  • Additional searches may be needed to locate all members of a particular family in the census.
  • The census may identify persons for whom other records do not exist.

I Can't Find the Person I'm Looking For, What Now?

  • Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for alias names, nicknames and abbreviated names.
  • Search for the marriage record of the marriage partner if known.
  • Check for a different index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume. Local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.
  • 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 that may be your ancestor.
  • There is also the possibility that a family was missed in the census.

For a summary of this information see the wiki article: United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records).

Known Issues with This Collection

Important.png Problems with this collection?
See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to support@familysearch.org Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.

Citing This Collection

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.

Collection Citation
"Massachusetts State Census, 1855." Database with images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : 14 June 2016. Citing Secretary of the Commonwealth. State Archives, Boston.
Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record.

Image Citation:
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?

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.