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Source Information

Ancestry.com. U.S. Federal Census Mortality Schedules, 1850-1885 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010. A portion of this collection was indexed by Ancestry World Archives Project contributors.
Original data:
State Citation
United States. Federal Mortality Census Schedules, 1850-1880 (formerly in the custody of the Daughters of the American Revolution), and Related Indexes, 1850-1880. T655, 30 rolls. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
AlabamaUnited States. U.S. Census Mortality Schedules, Alabama, 1850-1880 Alabama State Department of Archives & History, Montgomery, Alabama
ArkansasUnited States. Eighth census of the United States, 1860, Arkansas, mortality and Tenth census of the United States, 1880, Arkansas, mortality [microform] F410.C46 1850a, 1860a, 1870a, 1880a. University of Arkansas Libraries, Fayetteville, Arkansas
CaliforniaNonpopulation Census Schedules for California, 1850-1880. Microfilm, 4 rolls. The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.
ColoradoUnited States. Schedules of the Colorado State Census, 1885. Schedule 5, Mortality. M158, 8 rolls. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.
ConnecticutUnited States. Nonpopulation Federal Census Schedules, Mortality, 1850-1885. 4 rolls. The Connecticut State Library, Hartford, Connecticut.
FloridaUnited States. Schedules of the Florida State Census of 1885. Schedule 5, Mortality. M845, 13 rolls. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.
IllinoisUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Illinois, 1850-1880. T1133, rolls 58-64. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
IowaUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Iowa, 1850-1880. T1156, rolls 54-62. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
KansasUnited States. Non-population Census Schedules for Kansas, 1850-1880. T1130, rolls 1, 3, and 42-44. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
MaineNon-population Census Schedules for Maine, 1850-1880. Microfilm, 4 rolls. Maine State Archives, Augusta.
MassachusettsUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Massachusetts, 1850-1880. T1204, rolls 9-10, 17, 22-23, and 37-40. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
MichiganUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Michigan, 1850: Mortality Schedules (in the custody of the State Library of Michigan) 1850. T1163, 1 roll. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
MichiganUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Michigan, 1850-1880 (in the custody of the Michigan State Archives), 1850-1880. T1164, rolls 15, 26-27, and 74-77. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
MinnesotaUnited States. Minnesota census schedules for 1870. T132, 13 Rolls. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.
MontanaUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Montana, 1870 and 1880. M1806, 1 roll. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.
NebraskaUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Nebraska, 1860-1880. T1128, rolls 2-3 and 14-15. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.

United States. Schedules of the Nebraska State Census of 1885. M352, rolls 1–56. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.

New HampshireUnited States. Mortality Schedules, 1850-1880. M # 231.01 – M # 231.13. New Hampshire Archives and Records Management, Concord, New Hampshire.
New JerseyUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for New Jersey, 1850-1880: Mortality. M1810, 4 rolls. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
OhioUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Ohio, 1850-1880. T1159, rolls 14-15, 29-30, and 102-104. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
North CarolinaUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for North Carolina, 1850-1880: Mortality and Manufacturing. M1805, rolls 1-5. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
PennsylvaniaUnited States. Non-Population Census Schedules for Pennsylvania, 1850-1880: Mortality. M1838, 11 rolls. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
South CarolinaUnited States. Mortality Schedules, 1850-1880. South Carolina Department of Archives and History, Columbia, South Carolina
TexasUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Texas, 1850-1880. T1134, rolls 53 and 55-60. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
Utah and VermontUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Utah Territory and Vermont, 1870: Mortality. M1807, 1 roll. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.
VirginiaUnited States. Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Virginia, 1850-1880. T1132, rolls 1, 10, and 18-19. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.
VirginiaUnited States. Eighth Census of the United States for the Northern District of Halifax County, Virginia, 1860: Schedules of Free Inhabitants, Slave Inhabitants, Mortality, Agriculture, Industry, and Social Statistics, 1860. M1808, 1 roll. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.
WashingtonUnited States. Non-population Census Schedules for Washington Territory, 1860-1880. A1154, roll 3. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.
WisconsinUnited States. United States Census Schedules for Wisconsin. Series 1675-1677, 4 rolls. Wisconsin Historical Society, Madison, Wisconsin.

About U.S. Federal Census Mortality Schedules, 1850-1885

Part of the U.S. Federal Censuses from 1850-1880 included a mortality schedule enumerating the individuals who had died in the previous year. Because each of the censuses from 1850-1880 began on June 1, “previous year” refers to the 12 months preceding June 1, or June 1 (of the previous year) to May 31 (of the census year).

This database contains an index to individuals enumerated in these mortality schedules. In addition, each individual is linked to the census image on which they appear. Not all information that is recorded on the actual census is included in the index. Therefore, it is important that you view the image on which your ancestor is recorded to obtain all possible information about him/her. This database often included the names of the slave owners whose slaves had passed - please search in the 'Other' field to locate slave owners.

About State Censuses

In addition to the Federal Mortality Schedules, this database also includes Mortality Schedules from three State Censuses – Colorado, Florida, and Nebraska conducted in 1885. The federal act of 1879 that regulated the 1880 census also requested states and territories to conduct semi-decennial state censuses offering monetary compensation to those who did. Fifty percent of the amount states and territories paid supervisors and enumerators would be remunerated to the state or territory from the Federal Treasury on completion of the census. These records were later transferred from state archives to the National Archives.

Questions asked in the mortality schedules:

  • Deceased's name
  • Sex
  • Age
  • Color (White, black, mulatto)
  • Whether widowed
  • Place of birth (state, territory, or country)
  • Month in which the death occurred
  • Profession, occupation, or trade
  • Disease or cause of death
  • Number of days ill
  • Parents' birthplaces (added in 1870)
  • Place where disease was contracted and how long the deceased was a resident of the area (added in 1880)

Why mortality schedules are useful:

Mortality schedules are essentially nationwide, state-by-state death registers that predate the recording of vital statistics in most states. While deaths are under-reported, the mortality schedules remain an invaluable source of information.

Mortality schedules are useful for tracing and documenting genetic symptoms and diseases and verifying and documenting Africa American, Chinese, and Native American ancestry, although African Americans are often included, especially if they were slaves.

By using these schedules to document death dates and family members, it is possible to follow up with focused searches in obituaries, mortuary records, cemeteries, and probate records. They can also provide clues to migration points and supplement information in population schedules.

Some of the above information taken from:

  • Loretto Dennis Szucs, "Research in Census Records" In The Source: A Guidebook of American Genealogy, ed. Loretto Dennis Szucs and Sandra Hargreaves Luebking (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1997).
  • Crawford, Rebecca. The Forgotten Federal Census of 1885, Fall 2008, Vol. 40, No. 3 (Washington D.C.: National Archives, 2008).

Which states are included?

The following table shows for which states and years mortality schedules exist. Those in bold are ones that Ancestry.com has or will soon post online. The remaining states will be posted as Ancestry.com can acquire the data.

1850186018701880
AlabamaAlabamaAlabamaAlabama
 Arizona (in part as part
of New Mexico Territory)
Arizona (Territory)Arizona (Territory)
ArkansasArkansasArkansasArkansas
CaliforniaCaliforniaCaliforniaCalifornia
  Colorado (Territory)Colorado
ConnecticutConnecticutConnecticutConnecticut
DelawareDelawareDelawareDelaware
District of ColumbiaDistrict of ColumbiaDistrict of ColumbiaDistrict of Columbia
FloridaFloridaFloridaFlorida
GeorgiaGeorgiaGeorgiaGeorgia
  Idaho (Territory)Idaho (Territory)
IllinoisIllinoisIllinoisIllinois
IndianaIndianaIndianaIndiana
IowaIowaIowaIowa
 Kansas (Territory)KansasKansas
KentuckyKentuckyKentuckyKentucky
LouisianaLouisianaLouisianaLouisiana
MaineMaineMaineMaine
MarylandMarylandMarylandMaryland
MassachusettsMassachusettsMassachusettsMassachusetts
MichiganMichiganMichiganMichigan
Minnesota (Territory)MinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesota
MississippiMississippiMississippiMississippi
MissouriMissouriMissouriMissouri
  Montana (Territory)Montana (Territory)
 Nebraska (Territory)NebraskaNebraska
Nevada (as part
of Utah Territory)
Nevada as part
of Utah Territory)
NevadaNevada
New HampshireNew HampshireNew HampshireNew Hampshire
New JerseyNew JerseyNew JerseyNew Jersey
New Mexico (Territory)New Mexico (Territory)New Mexico (Territory) 
New YorkNew YorkNew YorkNew York
North CarolinaNorth CarolinaNorth CarolinaNorth Carolina
 North DakotaNorth DakotaNorth Dakota
Ohio (counties
H-W only)
OhioOhio
(Seneca County only)
Ohio (Adams to
Geaugan counties only)
Oregon (Territory)OregonOregonOregon
PennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaPennsylvania
Rhode IslandRhode IslandRhode IslandRhode Island
South CarolinaSouth CarolinaSouth CarolinaSouth Carolina
 South DakotaSouth DakotaSouth Dakota
TennesseeTennessee Tennessee
TexasTexasTexasTexas
Utah (Territory)Utah (Territory)Utah (Territory)Utah (Territory)
VermontVermontVermontVermont
VirginiaVirginiaVirginiaVirginia
Washington (as part
of Oregon Territory)
Washington (Territory)Washington (Territory)Washington (Territory)
West Virginia (as part
of Virginia)
West Virginia (as part
of Virginia)
West VirginiaWest Virginia
WisconsinWisconsinWisconsinWisconsin
  Wyoming (Territory)Wyoming (Territory)

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