Genealogy Clues in the 1860 U.S. Federal Census

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The 1860 US Federal Census provides many genealogy clues we can use to grow our family tree in our family history research. Learn how to find all the clues about your ancestors in this great genealogical source.


Watch This Episode, or Continue Reading Below


What is the Federal Census?

The U.S. Government began taking a census of each person living within its boundaries every 10 years starting in 1790. The census helps the government determine the population of each state, as well as other statistics used for a variety of government purposes. In this case, we are covering the genealogy clues available in the population portion of the census schedules.

Each census year, the questions were a little different. See all the questions asked in the 1860 U.S. Federal Census here: https://www.census.gov/history/www/through_the_decades/index_of_questions/1860_1.html


The 1860 Census Sample Page

In this video, we examine the family and household of Lewis Ritchie, enumerated in Nelson County, Kentucky. Below is the full census page. Please watch the video for the full details.


Citation for this census:

“United States Census, 1860”, database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MZB8-9WV : 14 December 2017), Page 25, Household 149, Lewis Ritchie, District 2, Nelson, Kentucky, 1860.

Link to this exact record:

https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MZB8-9WV?from=lynx1UIV8&treeref=KLLK-HYJ


What is the most interesting clue you have found in the 1860 U.S. Federal Census for your ancestors?


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See you next time,

Melissa


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