- Minnesota Historical Society. Minnesota State Population Census Schedules, 1865-1905. St. Paul, MN, USA: Minnesota Historical Society, 1977. Microfilm. Reels 1-47 and 107-164.
- Minnesota. Minnesota Territorial Census Schedules, 1849-1855. St. Paul, MN, USA: Minnesota Historical Society, 2000. Microfilm.
- Minnesota. Minnesota 1857 Territorial Census. Minnesota Historical Society, St. Paul, MN, USA.
About Minnesota, U.S., Territorial and State Censuses, 1849-1905
This database contains the Minnesota territorial and state censuses for the following years:
Information available for an individual will vary according to the census year and the information requested on the census form. Some of the information contained in this database includes:
- Enumeration place
- Parents’ birthplaces
Additional information about an individual, such as his or her occupation, may be available on the actual census record. Be sure to view the corresponding image in order to obtain all possible information about an individual.
See below for more details about each census year.
Minnesota inhabitants were first enumerated in the Michigan Territory 1820 census and the 1836 census of the Wisconsin Territory. A census of the Minnesota Territory was ordered in 1849, which included the name of head of household and number of males and females in that household.
The 1849 census included the former Wisconsin Territories of St. Croix and La Pointe, as well as the rest of the new territory which had not yet been organized into counties. By 1850, the new territory had been organized into the counties of Benton, Dakota, Itasca, Mankatah, Pembina, Ramsey, Wabashaw, Wahnahta, and Washington.
A very incomplete 1853 Minnesota census exists for limited areas. Some schedules are only head of household, number of children, and total number in household, but a few include all names of inhabitants.
This database contains data for two counties in 1853 – Dakota and Washington.
The state census for heads of household in 1855 has been largely lost. The published schedule for Wright County has survived, as have manuscript copies for the counties of Chisago, Doty, and Superior.
The 1857 Minnesota territorial census was mandated for statehood qualification and apparently included fictitious names in seven counties to boost the population.
The following counties are included for this year: Anoka, Benton, Blue Earth, Brown, Buchanan, Carlton, Carver, Cass, Chisago, Cottonwood, Crow Wing, Dakota, Dodge, Faribault, Fillmore, Freeborn, Goodhue, Hennepin, Houston, Isanti, Itasca, Jackson, Lake, Le Sueur, Mahnomen, Martin, McLeod, Meeker, Morrison, Mower, Murray, Nicollet, Nobles, Olmsted, Pembina, Pierce, Pine, Pipestone, Ramsey, Renville, Rice, Rock, Scott, Sherburne, Sibley, St. Louis, Stearns, Steele, Todd, Wabasha, Waseca, Washington, Winona, and Wright.
Each of the state census enumerations includes all members of the household. In 1865, “Soldier in service on June 1, 1865” was included. The 1875 census gives the birthplaces of father and mother. The 1895 and 1905 censuses may be especially helpful to the genealogist as they include the length of time an individual has lived in the state and the district.
Where to Find Copies:
Microfilmed copies of this census are available through the Minnesota Historical Society in St. Paul and the Family History Library (FHL). Copies may be ordered to local libraries through interlibrary loan, and to local Family History Centers through the FHL.
Some of the above information was taken from Maki, Carol L. and Michael John Neill, "Minnesota," in Ancestry's Red Book, ed. Alice Eichholz. (Provo, UT: Ancestry, 2004).