Find your ancestors in Search the 1850 US Census

1850 US Census 7th United States Census

Information requested for the 1850 Census

    • Number of dwelling and number of family (in order visited)
    • Name
    • Relationship to head of household
    • Race, Sex, Age
    • Marital Status
    • State or country of birth
    • Value of real estate
    • Blind, deaf or dumb?
    • If over 20 can you read or write?
    • What was this person doing most of last week – Working, Keeping house or something else, and for how many hours and class of worker
    Population (slave inhabitants):
    • Name of owner
    • Number of slave (slaves were assigned numbers not names
    • Age, Sex, Color
    • Blind, deaf, dumb, insane or idiotic?
    • Number of uncaught escaped slaves
    • Number of slaves freed from bondage
  • Supplemental questions: Additional questions were asked regarding level of education, military service, how much money was made and marriage and child birth history.

What was lost from the 1850 Census?

No major loss of records

1850 Census Quick Facts

  • 1850 was the first census in which free persons were listed individually and the first census with separate questionnaires for slaves.
  • It took $1,423,000, approximately 3,231 enumerators and 2,165 published reports to complete the 1850 census
  • The US population increased by 35.9 percent from the 1840 census to the 1850 census.

Historical Events Surrounding 1850 Census

  • September 8, 1850: the Fugitive Slave Act was created providing for the return of slaves brought to free states.
  • February 28, 1854: The republican party was founded.
  • Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe was published in 1852