I am trying to locate older unsummarized US Census data to do more research than just the statistics provided by the US Census Bureau.

I know the old Census Data itself is located on Archives.gov and Ancestry.com and is searchable.. but not for example names are not directly queryable in any mass form to generate statistics. In particular in addition to the normal categorical (i.e. Occupation) data and the numerical data, to do the analysis I want to attempt I require surnames in combination with this data. So for example I could do occupation to surname analysis by geographic region.

I have seen Ancestry.com do stats (but you cannot request specific ones) but they are generic and do not account for name variations (SOUNDEX or similar) nor have any granularity or is one able to make any other correlations such as to wealth / value to occupation and surnames (for example).

I have seen other posts here in this forum, but none I have spotted contain surname data which is what I am specifically looking for.

I have searched the following without success:

So I am looking for pre-1901 census data, in particular I would like the 1850 or 1860 AND the 1890 and 1900 census in its entirety. But I will take what years I can get... Ideas?

Note: Yes I realize this would be rather large data set of millions of rows.. but that is exactly what I am looking to obtain.

  • Ancestry, the Mormon Church (familysearch.org) and NARA have all OCR'd these records. But these are commercial endeavors. I don't think you can get a raw download. I tried Googling but could not find a crowd sourced project. Commented Mar 6, 2015 at 22:59
  • I googled before I asked the question as I did not find one either. But others seem to be doing something similar it in the academic space. So I am hoping there is 'something' out there.
    – CRSouser
    Commented Mar 7, 2015 at 2:20

1 Answer 1


you're talking about historical public use microdata, right? you want


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