1890 police census for NYC, NY
Finding Aid for the 1890 New York City, New York Police Census
There's a finding aid of great value for those who had relatives/ancestors in New York County in 1890 (what is in 2008- Manhattan and the western Bronx and the Islands in the East River.)
As is well known, most of the 1890 regular federal census - except for the enumeration of Civil War Vets - does not exist. In 1890, in response to a feeling that New York City was undercounted in the federal census, political leaders had the police force do a recount. The 1890 Police census began on 29 September and was mostly completed by 14 October.
Of the 1008 books of this recount, 894 are extant and are on 59 rolls of microfilm at the FHL FHL 1304777 (beginning FHL 1304777), NYC Archives, and various NYC libraries . This police census gives name, age, and gender. It does not indicate relationship, but in the instances I have checked families are listed together.
To find someone in this census it is necessary to use a New York City directory ending 1 May 1891 (FHL 1377197), or if a name was not listed in that directory- the directory ending 1 May 1890 to locate the family's address, and then you were required to go thru a very convoluted process to try to identify possible films that a particular address MIGHT be on. The address could be in one of many "books" on one of those films. IF you identified the possible rolls correctly, after checking the possible rolls, the worst case scenario was that the book did not exist for the address you sought.
The book Aid to Finding Addresses in The 1890 New York City Police Census compiled by Howard Jensen, and published by Heritage Books (2003) indicates the exact FHL film and the exact book on that film where the address appears. If the address is not listed, it is not on an existing film. Knowing only the street name may require searching several microfilms and books, depending on how long the street was.
Mr. Jensen is a respected contributor/ member of the NYC Rootsweb mailing list, and is the source of the some 20,000 names from the 1890 NYC Police Census found at Ancestry.com (According to Mr. Jensen, over one million seven hundred thousand names were listed in the original 1008 books.) ISBN: 1-58549-880-7