State Census News for Genealogy Buffs

State census records often prove to be an invaluable resource for anyone researching their family history. Many states, (including Michigan), periodically conduct their own internal censuses between the years of the decennial U.S. Census. While not all manuscript records have survived, state census records that still exist are incredibly useful for genealogists.

Michigan conducted many censuses following its admission as a state. The 1884 and 1894 records are the most complete.

Up until this point, the records were only available through microfilm or the occasional print index. Last month the Archives of Michigan released over 62,000 records from the 1884 and 1894 censuses on its website. All the records are searchable and accessible for free to either copy or print. The combination of both censuses helps fill a gap in the federal record due to the unavailability of the 1890 U.S. Census (mostly destroyed in a 1921 fire). They are also a great complement to website’s already heavily-used collection of Michigan Death Records, 1897-1920. Happy researching!


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Written by Adam


Adam is a librarian at Kent District Library’s Kentwood Branch.

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