New York, State Census, 1865 (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page
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Access the records: New York State Census, 1865 .
These records are for the year 1865.
The record is a printed form that was filled in by hand by the enumerator. The records are usually arranged by county and town.
This census does not cover the entire population of the state of New York. The following counties are missing:
- New York
- St Lawrence
This census includes several other sections, beyond the population schedules, that contain useful information. It includes two schedules with information of officers and enlisted men currently in the military and officers and enlisted men who had served in the military. This census contains information on when and where the individual first entered the military, their rank, how long they were in the service, their present health, as well as several other items. The census also includes tables on marriages and deaths occurring during the year ending June 1, 1865. These tables contain typical marriage and death information. One other table that contains valuable information is entitled deaths of officers and enlisted men. This table contains deaths of individuals which had occurred while in the military or naval service of the United States, or from wounds or disease acquired in said service since April, 1861, reported by the families to which the deceased belonged when at home. It includes the name of the deceased, age at death, if married or single, if a citizen, several items relating to military information, date of death, place of death, manner of death, survivors of the deceased, place of burial and any remarks.
State censuses were created by the state of New York and were taken about every ten years beginning in 1795.
For a list of records by localities and dates currently published in this collection, select the Browse.
These records are for the year 1865.
The census was compiled to obtain a count and description of the population of the state of New York.
Use the information with some caution, since the information may have been given to a census taker by any member of the family or by a neighbor. Some information may have been incorrect or deliberately falsified.
Citation for This Collection
The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Records collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records.
- New York Secretary of State. New York State census 1865. New York State Library, Albany, New York.
Key genealogical facts found in the population schedules of the 1865 New York State Census are:
- Name of every person whose usual place of abode was with this family on 1 June 1865
- Head of household, name of employer
- Name of each person in household
- Age, gender, race of each person
- Marital status and occupation of each person
- Relationship to head of household
- In what county of New York or in what state or country born
- Child's birth number
- Number of times married
- Citizenship (native, naturalized or alien)
- If a land owner
- If over 21 and illiterate
- If handicapped
- If currently or formerly in the Army or Navy
How to Use the Records
To search the collection, select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page ⇒ Select the County ⇒ Select the Town/City/Borough/Ward and Election District which takes you to the images.
Look at the images one by one comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine which one is your ancestor. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to make this determination.
A census can provide you with names and ages of family members, which can then be used to calculate birth or marriage dates. It can provide the county and town where your ancestor lived, people living with (or gone from) the family, and relatives that may have lived nearby. The census may identify persons for whom other records do not exist.
To begin your search, it is helpful to know
- Residence or address
Search the Collection
Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. Look at the list of entries created by your search. Compare the information about the ancestors in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to find your ancestor.
Using the Information
When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. Make a photocopy of the record, or extract the genealogical information needed. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details. Add this new information to your records of each family. The information may also lead you to other records about your ancestors. The following examples show ways you can use the information:
- Use the age listed to determine an approximate birth date. This date along with the place of birth can help you find a birth record. Birth records often list biographical and marital details about the parents and close relatives other than the immediate family.
- Birth places can tell you former residences and can help to establish a migration pattern for the family.
- Use the race information to find records related to that ethnicity such as records of the Freedman’s Bureau or Indian censuses.
- Use the naturalization information to find their naturalization papers in the county court records. It can also help you locate immigration records such as a passenger list which would usually be kept records at the port of entry into the United States.
- If they are subject to military service they may have military files in the State or National Archives.
- Occupations listed can lead you to employment records or other types of records such as school records; children’s occupations are often listed as “at school.”
Tips to Keep in Mind
- You may need to compare the information of more than one family or person to make this determination.
- Married family members may have lived nearby but in a separate household so you may want to search an entire town, neighboring towns, or even a county.
- You may be able to identify an earlier generation if elderly parents were living with or close by a married child.
- You may be able to identify a younger generation if a young married couple still lived with one of their sets of parents.
- Additional searches may be needed to locate all members of a particular family in the census.
- The census may identify persons for whom other records do not exist.
- It is often helpful to extract the information on all families with the same surname in the same general area. If the surname is uncommon, it is likely that those living in the same area were related.
- Be sure to extract all families before you look at other records. The relationships given will help you to organize family groups. The family groupings will help you identify related families when you discover additional information in other records.
If you are unable to find the ancestors you are looking for, try the following:
- Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
- Check for an index. Check online or with local historical and genealogical societies.
- Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.
For a summary of this information see the wiki article: United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records).
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Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections
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Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection
"New York State Census,1885." images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org: accessed 31 March 2011) Polly Herrick, age 65; citing Census Records, Sarataoga, Edinburg, Image 1 frame 75; Saratoga County Clerk Office, Ballston Spa, New York.