Census Records for Ohio

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This entry was originally written by Carol L. Maki and Michael John Neill for Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources.

This article is part of
Ohio sil.png
the Ohio Family History Research series.
History of Ohio
Ohio Vital Records
Census Records for Ohio
Background Sources for Ohio
Ohio Maps
Ohio Land Records
Ohio Probate Records
Ohio Court Records
Ohio Tax Records
Ohio Cemetery Records
Ohio Church Records
Ohio Military Records
Ohio Periodicals, Newspapers, and Manuscript Collections
Ohio Archives, Libraries, and Societies
Ethnic Groups of Ohio
Ohio County Resources
Map of Ohio


Population Schedules

• Indexed'1800 (Washington County only), 1810 (Washington County only'others burned 1812), 1820 (Franklin and Wood counties missing), 1830, 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870 (Cincinnati and Cleveland only), 1890 (fragment), 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930

• Soundex'1880, 1900, 1910 (Miracode), 1920

Industry and Agriculture Schedules

• 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 (lists do not exist for all counties for each year); manufacturer's'1820 (very limited)

Mortality Schedules

• 1850 for counties H'W (published), 1860 all counties (published), 1870 (Seneca County only), 1880 (Adams to Geaugan counties only)

Union Veterans Schedules

• 1890

The Ohio Historical Society suggests that the duplicate tax lists of Ohio counties may be used as a substitute for the missing 1810 census. In addition to the indexes published by AISI (see pages 3-4), the 1850 and 1860 census records have been indexed and published by Lida Flint Harshman. The Ohio Genealogical Society (see Archives, Libraries, and Societies) has completed an every-name surname index from the original 1880 census it has in its possession. In addition to the online indexes through subscription services (see page 17), federal censuses for Ohio through 1870 are indexed in print form and available at Family History Centers and through several vendors.

The 1890 population census exists only for Cincinnati (Hamilton County) and Wayne Township (Clinton County) and is indexed in the microfilm index provided by the National Archives for the remaining 1890 census returns.


Ohio had no state census records. There are scattered county census records taken for militia purposes, plus personal and real estate tax lists, all of which have been incorrectly referred to as state census records. There are quadrennial enumerations taken every four years from 1803 to 1911 to determine voting districts. These include males (white only, prior to 1863) over twenty-one years of age residing in a county, showing address, race, occupation, and whether a freeholder of land. Not all counties are available for each four-year period, nor is each township for each county included. A list of the available records can be obtained from the Ohio Historical Society, where the enumerations are either on microfilm or in original form. This repository also holds 'enumerations of school-aged youth' for selected years and counties.

The 'Special Enumeration of Blacks Immigrating to Ohio, 1861'1863, by the Auditor of the State' (State Archives Series 2261) is microfilmed and can be purchased from the Ohio Historical Society Microfilm Department. The microfilm includes a four-part index, by name, previous residence, questionable names, and county of those African Americans who had migrated to the state between 1 March 1861 and 3 March 1863. Forty-seven counties scattered around the state responded with at least one name, resulting in a total of 1,375 names. The Ohio Genealogical Society (see Ohio Archives, Libraries, and Societies) has published many of these enumerations in its chapter's newsletters.

External Links

  • Ohio Census Records - free up-to-date guide to accessing Ohio census records. Identifies federal, state, and territorial censuses, as well as substitute records (FamilySearch Research Wiki).