Wales - Genealogy Help Pages - 1841 census instructions


The Instructions to the Enumerators from the 1841 Census


Respecting the manner in which Entries may be made in the Enumeration Schedule.

After " City or Borough of" write the name, if the District is in a City or a Borough; if not, draw a line through those words, or through whichever of the two the District does not belong to.  After " Parish or Township of" write the name; if there is no Township in the Parish, draw a line through " Township"; if it is a Township, write the name of the Township, and draw a line through " Parish".  If it is Extra-Parochial, draw a line through " Parish or Township of", and write " Extra-Parochial" over those words, and after it the name.

In the column headed " Place", write the name of the house (if it has a name) or of the street or other part of the town, or of the village, hamlet, or extra-parochial place in which it stands, opposite to the mark denoting each house, or the first house in the street, &c, and write "do" opposite to every other in the same street, &c.

" Houses" -- Insert houses uninhabited or building in the manner shewn in the Example, writing " 1 U" or " 1 B" as the case may be, in the proper column, opposite to the inhabited house to which it stands nearest.  Every house which is unoccupied at the time of your visit and is believed not to have been slept in the night before, may be inserted as uninhabited.  New houses, not yet inhabited, may be inserted as " Building".  Where there is a row of such houses the total number may be inserted before the letter B instead of the separate insertion of each.

By " House" is meant Dwelling House; and every building in which any person habitually sleeps must be considered as a dwelling-house; but buildings, such as churches or warehouses, or any others, which were never used or intended to be used as dwelling houses, must not be inserted.

" Names of each Person who abode therein the preceding night" -- Insert, without distinction or omission, every living person who abode or slept in each house.  Leave no blank spaces between the names, but enter each immediately after the one preceding it, so that each page may contain 25.  Set down one after the other those who have the same surname, beginning with the heads of the family, and put no others between them.  As long as the surname is the same do not repeat it, but write " do".  Where there are more christian names than one, as "John William" or "Maria Louise", write down only the first.

When the person is a Peer or Peeress, the title may be written instead of the name.  The words "Lord", "Lady", "Sir", "Rt.Hon.", "Hon." May be put before the names of those to whom they belong.

If no christian name has been given to an infant wrote " n.k." for not known, as in the Example.

If, as may happen in a lodging-house or inn, a person who slept there the night before, has gone away early and the name is not known, write " n.k." where the name should have been.

At the end of the names of each family draw a line thus / as in the Example.  At the end of the names of the inmates in each house draw a double line thus //.

" Age and Sex" -- Write the age of each person opposite to the name in one of the two columns headed "Males" and "Females", according to the sex.

Write the age of every person under 15 years of age as it is stated to you.  For persons aged 15 years and upwards, write the lowest of the term of 5 years within which the age is.

Thus -- for Persons aged

15 years and under 20 write 15
20 years and under 25 write 20
25 years and under 30 write 25
30 years and under 35 write 30
35 years and under 40 write 35
40 years and under 45 write 40
45 years and under 50 write 45
50 years and under 55 write 50
55 years and under 60 write 55
60 years and under 65 write 60
65 years and under 70 write 65
70 years and under 75 write 70

     and so on up to the greatest ages.

If no more can be ascertained respecting the age of any person than that the person is a child or is grown up, write " under 20" or " above 20", as the case may be.

" Profession, Trade, Employment, or of Independent Means." -- Men, or widows, or single women, having no profession or calling, but living on their means, may be inserted as independent, which may be written shortly, thus " Ind".

"The profession, &c., of wives, or of sons or daughters living with their husbands or parents, and assisting them, but not apprenticed or receiving wages, need not be set down.

All persons serving in Her Majesty's Land service as officers or privates in the Line, Cavalry, Engineers, or Artillery, may be entered as " Army", without any statement of their rank, adding " H.P." for Half-Pay, and " P." for Pensioner.

All persons belonging to Her Majesty's Sea service, including Marines, may be entered as " Navy," adding " H.P." for Half-Pay, and " P." for Pensioner.

All domestic servants may be entered as " M.S." for Male Servant, or " F.S." for Female Servant, without statement of their particular duties, as whether butler, groom, gardener, housekeeper, cook, &c., &c.

Insert all other professions, trades, or employments, as they are described by the parties, or by others on their behalf, writing " J." for Journeyman, " Ap." for Apprentice, and " Sh." for Shopman, after the statement of the trade of those who are such.  " Master" need not be inserted; every one will be so considered who is not entered as journeyman or apprentice.

Time may be saved by writing the following words, shortly thus, " M." for Manufacturer, " m." for Maker, as " Shoe m" for Shoemaker, " Cl." for Clerk, " Ag. lab." for Agricultural labourer, which may include all farming servants and labourers in husbandry.  Use no other marks or abbreviations but those herein allowed.

Rank, or any such term as " Esq." or " Gentleman," must not be entered in this column.

" Where born. - Whether in the same County." -- Write opposite to each name (except those of Irish, Scotch, or Foreigners,) " Y." or " N." for Yes or No, as the case may be.

Whether in Scotland, Ireland, or Foreign Parts. -- Write in this column, " S." for those who were born in Scotland; " I." for those born in Ireland; and " F." for Foreigners.  This latter mark is to be used only for those who are subjects of some Foreign State, and not for British subjects who happen to have been born abroad.

Enter the Totals at the bottom of each page as in the Example, and enter and add up all the Totals in the summary in the last page.  This may be done at home, and must be written with ink.

The entries in the pages of the Enumeration Schedule (except the Totals) may be written with a pencil, which will be furnished for that purpose.  All that is written in the 3 pages following them must be with ink.

N.B.  Take care that you enumerate all the Inhabitants of every portion of one Parish, Hamlet, Township, &c., in your District, before you commence with those of any other Parish, Hamlet, Township, &c.; and on completing the enumeration of such place, make no more entries in the page containing the name of the last person enumerated therein, but consider such page as filled, and begin at the top of the page next following to enumerate the Inhabitants of another Parish, Township, Hamlet, &c., being especially careful first to insert in the column headed "Place" immediately opposite to the first line in the page, the name of the Parish, Township, Hamlet, &c., whose Inhabitants you are about to enumerate.

[Transcribed by Ruth Curtis     30-04-2006]