Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

U.S. Census Research Guide: 1820

The U.S. Census Bureau conducts several data collection programs about the U.S. population which have their own language, geography, and data portals. This guide is based on a similar guide created by Kelly Smith at UCSD.

For more info...

Raw Data Files

These are computer files intended to be loaded into statistical software for analysis and creating your own tables. In some cases these files can be used with spreadsheet software as well.

Population Schedules 1810, 1818, 1820

Census population schedules (or "name schedules" or "manuscript census") are copies of the original questionnaires collected during each decennial census. They list the individual names and family information of the people enumerated. Unlike the statistics published soon after the census, the population schedules remain confidential for 72 years. 1930 is the most recent population schedule available.

    online access to population schedules, search by name, place, and other characteristics


Need help? Use the Ask-A-Librarian reference service, or call us at (847) 491-7656, during Research Assistance Desk hours.

To consult with a government information specialist by appointment, contact

1820 Census

About the 1820 Census


  • 4th decennial census
  • US population: 9,638,453
  • Illinois population: 55,211
  • First census to ask about occupation/employment

Questions asked

Name of head of family; age; sex; race; foreigners not naturalized; slaves; industry (agriculture, commerce, and manufactures).

For more information:

Map Coverage of the 1820 Census

For more information:

Map Guide to the U.S. Federal Censuses, 1790 - 1920


Multi-year census compilations (compare across years): These sources tend to include statistics for large geographic areas (e.g. states), but can be very useful when comparing statistics over time.

Digitized Data Sources

Key publications:

Print available in the Library

Online access

Census for 1820
Gov Ref Census C 3/a./5:
2 volumes

From the Census Bureau


Digest of accounts of manufacturing establishments in the United States, and of their manufactures

Sabin Americana (NU affiliates only)