28 September 2012

1885 US Census - Free blank form

The 1885 United States Census

We all know that the United States conducts a census every 10 years. Some of us also know that most of the 1890 census was destroyed in a fire. But did you know that there was a special 1885 semidecennial census that was taken here in New Mexico?

States were given the option to take this census. Any state that complied received from the federal government 50% of the cost to conduct the census. The states of Florida, Nebraska and Colorado and the territories of New Mexico and Dakota took up this opportunity to enumerate their people.

Genealogists can find the New Mexico 1885 Census in a couple of places. You may search for the census on Ancestry.com. Also, the microfilm of the census can be found in the Albuquerque Genealogy Library (2nd Floor of the Main Library), or in any Family History Center. The microfilm numbers are FHL 16610 and 16611.

Since we were unable to find a form that you may use to extract the census, The New Mexico Genealogical Society has created its own. Click this link to access a blank 1885 United States Census Population Schedule Form. An agriculture schedule form is forthcoming.

For more information:

Rebecca Crawford, "The Forgotten Federal Census of 1885", Prologue Magazine (Fall 2008) Vol. 40, No. 3, National Archives website http://www.archives.gov/publications/prologue/2008/fall/1885-census.html, accessed 24 September 2012.

Karen Stein Daniel, Genealogical Resources in New Mexico, 3rd Edition (Albuquerque: New Mexico Genealogical Society, 2007), p. 57.

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