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1840 U.S. Federal Census

The sixth census was governed by the same general provisions of law as in 1830. Under the provisions of an act of March 3, 1839 (and amended by an act of February 26, 1840), the enumeration began on June 1, 1840. Marshals were to receive two copies of the census receipts from enumerators by November 1, 1840, one of which was to be sent to the Secretary of State by December 1, 1840. No population questionnaire was prescribed by the Congress—the design of the questionnaire was left to the discretion of the Secretary of State, and closely followed that used in 1830. The law did specify the inquiries to be made of each household.2

There were no substantial state or district wide losses.3

Population Census Items

Name of family head; age; sex; race; slaves; number of deaf and dumb; number of blind; number of insane and idiotic and whether in public or private charge; number of persons in each family employed in each of six classes of industry and one of occupation; literacy; pensioners for Revolutionary or military service.1

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    1 Availability of Census Records About Individuals, U.S. Census Bureau Web Site, www.census.gov

    2 Census of Population and Housing, U.S. Census Bureau Web Site, www.census.gov

    3 The Source: A Guidebook of American Genealogy by Loretto Dennis Szucs; edited by Loretto Dennis Szucs and Sandra Hargreaves Luebking (Salt Lake City, UT: Ancestry Incorporated, 1997).

     

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