Kansas, State Census, 1885 (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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United States Gotoarrow.png Kansas

FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records scheduled to become available at FamilySearch.org.


What is in the Collection?

The collection consists of a name index of the Kansas state census taken in March 1, 1885. The census enumerates all household members.

Collection Contents

The census generally gives the following information:

  • all members of the household by name
  • sex
  • age
  • race or color
  • place of birth
  • relationship to head of household
  • birthplace of parents
  • where from to Kansas
  • military record [1]

How Do I Search the Collection?

Use this Kansas 1885 State Census Extraction Form. Fortunately, Kansas passed legislation to enumerate its population between Federal Census years. Use this census along with the 1880 to identify ancestors who were born after 1880. Since the 1890 Federal Census was destroyed, the Kansas 1885 State Census will be the most reliable census prior to 1900. The Kansas 1895 State Census was taken very carelessly according to the state agricultural board. See Kansas 1895 State Census.

Record History

Kansas became a state in 1861 and later passed a law requiring a state census every ten years to number the population of the various counties in order to determine apportionment of the state legislature. The first state census was taken in 1865 and continued until 1925, as the law was repealed in 1933.

Why this Record Was Created

The addintonal census was be used in conjuction with the 1880 census to more accurately determine population. "On March 1, 1885, the state census was taken, in accordance with constitutional provision. It showed the population of the state to be 1,268,562, upon which the new apportionment of the state into legislative districts was be made. The general assembly of 1885 had not been able to devise a method to avoid an extra session, and on Dec. 3, 1885, Gov. Martin issued a proclamation calling the legislature together on Jan. 19, 1886, to make a new apportionment as required by the constitution; to correct some mistakes in the acts of 1885 relating to the reform school and the school for feeble-minded; to make an appropriation to pay the salary and expenses of the commissioner of labor; and to correct the boundaries of certain judicial districts." [2]

Record Reliability

Censuses are usually reliable, depending on the knowledge of the informant and the care of the census enumerator. 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.

Related Web Sites

Kansas State Historical Society

Related Wiki Articles

How You Can Contribute

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.

Citing this Collection

Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.

Collection Citation:

"Kansas State Census, 1885." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2016. Citing Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka.

Record Citation (or citation for the index entry):

The citation for a record will be available with each record once the collection is published.
  1. "Kansas Censuses, 1855-1930 - Kansas Historical Society." Home - Kansas Historical Society. Web. 14 Dec. 2010. [1].
  2. Connelley, William Elsey. A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans. Vol. 2. Chicago: Standard, 1912. Print. pg. 237 Kansas 1885 State Census (Google Books)