The first modern UK census is the 1841 England, Wales and Scotland Census. It recorded the details of every person and household in Britain and, fortunately, it’s available in its entirety and with images. The Census was organized by the Registrar General of England and Wales and taken on the night of 6 June 1841. It gave the total population as 18,553,124.
The 1841 Census lists people’s age, occupation, where they lived, who they lived with, their marital status and more. This was the first time that the head of each household was given a form to fill in on behalf of everyone in the dwelling on a set day.
Where you can Consult the 1841 Census
You can find the Census in a few different sites. We recommend FamilySearch, as it can be used for free. FindMyPast also provides access to the 1841 Census and it has images that are not available in other sites.
You can search by name, browse by place, or locate an exact page if you have the full census reference.
Street indexes were created for districts containing towns with a population of around 40,000 or more. Online versions for the street indexes for 1841 are preserved in the UK Government Web Archive.
Searching for Census Information
The information included in the 1841 Census is:
- first name and surname
- age (rounded down to the nearest five years for those aged 15 or over)
- whether they were born in the county where they were enumerated (Y or N)
- whether they were born in Scotland (S), Ireland (I) or Foreign Parts (P)
You can search for free (with some limitations to the number of queries you can do), or register to gain access to unlimited resources and downloads.
Register and search for images of the 1841 Census in FindMyPast.
In the 1841 Census a policy of rounding down ages was in place. As such, people aged:
15-19 were recorded as 15
20-24 were recorded as 20
25-29 were recorded as 25
30-34 were recorded as 30
35-39 were recorded as 35…and so on