Overview of the 1830 Census
The 1830 census was taken over a period of one year, beginning on June 1, 1830. It collected similar information to past census periods, along with some new questions introduced for the first time.
This was the first census to list categories for persons who were “aliens.” This information can be useful to point you in the direction of court records pertaining to naturalization. Other new questions included a category for persons who were deaf, dumb or blind. This information could lead you to important institutional records.
Unique Features of the 1830 Census
Uniform Data – The 1830 census was the first census that was recorded in a uniform way. For the first time, forms were provided to each of the enumerators by the US government. Therefore, it is much easier to compare and contrast the data in the 1830 census than it is to do the same tasks using older census records.
The Question Of Age – The 1830 census broke down age groups of free white males and females in an interesting way. They were categorized by age in 5-year increments up until the age of 20. Then they were categorized in 10-year increments until age 100. There was also a category for anyone over the age of 100. One of the advantages of this unique breakdown of ages is that it became possible to better judge the total life span and average life span of people living at that time.
Historical Considerations of the 1830 Census
Family Names – When you are searching for an individual in the 1830 census, you should be aware that it was possible for several families to have the same name at the time. Also, names were not always spelled correctly. The census information can help you to identify common misspellings and separate one family’s information from another family’s information.
Slaves and Free African Americans – “Free men of color” were listed as heads of households, and their other family members may be traceable using tax records and other records from the time. If you are looking for information about a slave, that slave will be listed under the slaveholder’s name on the census records.
States Covered in the 1830 Census
The states covered by the census were Alabama, Arkansas Territory, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan Territory, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia
Resources for the 1830 Census
You might also find the following resources helpful: