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Content by
Linda Jonas 2006

Census Records

Census records began in England, Wales, and Scotland in 1801 under an Act of Parliament specifying the format that was to be used. From 1801 to 1831 names were not required to be recorded, but some enumerators did record names in order to count the numbers of the males and females that were to be tabulated. Starting in 1841 the names of all the inhabitants of each household were enumerated.

The 1841 census gives the exact age for children under age 15 and approximate ages rounded down to the nearest 5 for all others. It also gives sex, occupation, and whether born in the county where enumerated (Y for yes, N for no) or in another country (I for Ireland, S for Scotland, F for foreign parts).

In 1851 (and onward) the exact ages were given (as reported to the census taker), the relationship to the head of the household, and marital status. The exact place of birth (parish or town and county) was provided for those who were not foreign born.

The 1851 - 1901 censuses for England and Wales are indexed and available online through  If you do not have a subscription to, you can use it free at most Family History Centers and at many public libraries. The 1861 and 1891 censuses are available online at 1837 The 1841 and 1871 censuses are available online at

If you will be ordering the census on microfilm at any Family History Center, use microfiche #6024509 to find the film and fiche numbers for the census of all places in England and Wales for each census year.

The register of towns indexed by streets for England and Wales is on microfiche #6026692.

Census Street indexes for England and Wales

Census Year

FHL Microfiche Numbers








6054442 - 6054457




6036581 - 6036604


Census Records of England and Wales

Census Year

The Census: Microfilmed copies from the Family History Library

FHLC First Film/fiche Number*

1841 Complete set on 869 rolls of microfilm 0241190
1851 Complete set on 1377 rolls of microfilm 0087787
1861 Complete set on 753 rolls of microfilm (16mm) 0542554
1871 Complete set on 1829 rolls of microfilm 0824710
1881 Complete set on 1345 rolls of microfilm

Complete index/transcript at

Complete index/transcript on CD. Order at

Complete index/transcript on microfiche

1891 Complete set on 15,091 microfiche 6359765

*  N.B.:  Each of these is a large series of microfilms or microfiche.  Only the first film/fiche number is given so that you can find the series in the Family History Library Catalog.

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Project Administrators:  Roy Keys and Linda Jonas