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Gloucester Census

The First Census, 1790

On March 1, 1790, President Washington signed The First Census Act passed by the First Congress of the USA, which established that a complete census be taken every ten years.  The first two census for 1790 and 1800 were taken, but the Virginia records were destroyed when the British burned Washington DC during the War of 1812.  Therefore, the 1790 census consist of earlier enumerations from 1782 to 1785.  For Gloucester County, there were partial records for 1783 and complete records for 1784. 


1810 - 1900 Census

Cy Rilee
Roane Hunt

Cy Rilee pioneered in an effort to publish much of the federal census records in a form useful to genealogy researchers.  He has publish four books that cover the years from 1850 to 1880.  Each book includes analysis of the census record, included on this site.



Henry Lewis Rankin

Henry Lewis Rankin is another major contributor to publication of Gloucester census records.  He has digitized the records from 1810 to 1900, and they are presented on RootsWeb in table format.

For this website, Roane Hunt has drawn from the previous work of Rilee and Rankin, and has converted the census records to paragraph form.  He has checked each census (except 1900) line-by-line and has make corrections according to his interpretation of the records.

No other county in Virginia has as much census records available to them as the researchers of Gloucester County.  This is due to the books of Cy Rilee and the computer files of Henry Lewis Rankin.  I recommend to all serious researchers that they purchase the Rilee books and save Rankin's files on their computers.  They can easily search the Rankin files, and they can show the paper version from Rilee's books to those that insist upon a hard copies.  Also, different versions of interpretation can be written into Rilee's books for permanent storage.  Thank you, Cy and Lew.

Also, I recommend that you read the text from Rilee's four books that are linked below.  He shared similar thoughts when he addressed the GGSV in 2003.  Another link below presents the abbreviation for Rilee's 1880 census.  Cy Rilee prefers to sell his four books as a set for $99.  (You may negotiate for single copies.)  You may reach him by phone (804) 694-5090 or by e-mail at [email protected] .   LRH



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ink.gif - 1.5 K President, Roger C. Davis                        ink.gif - 1.5 K Webmaster, L. Roane Hunt

Last Updated  Friday, 30 January 2004 06:20 PM