1870 Census Transcription Project
You will notice that there are no page numbers in this
book Instead, the whole-name index
lists every person in the census by a unique line number. In the census the line numbers start with 1
at the top of the first page and run sequentially to 8654 at the bottom of the
last page. To find a person in this
census, find them in the index and note their line number. Then flip through the census until you get
to that line number on a census page. The line numbers run down the left hand column on both the census and
the index. This saves having to search
the whole page for the name in question.
There was only one census date entered for this census of 8,013 people.That was on the first sheet.In addition, there are only four geographical divisions listed: Pensacola, Warrington, Molino and everywhere else. Itís probably safe to assume that if no place name is entered before the county at the heading of each page, the people on that page lived in the county.† That covers a lot of territory, however, from Bluff Springs to Muscogee, to McDavid and Cantonment.
For the most part, this was a well preserved census but some of the names were simply impossible to make out because of the handwriting.† In places the writing was just too cramped to make out.
Beyond that, the enumerator sometimes just spelled the name wrong or misunderstood the name.I can see instances of that in the census but have not corrected those obvious misspellings because the purpose of the transcription is to exactly duplicate the original data.I included cross links to many ofthese variations in spelling in the index.Many of the transcribers, however, expanded on some of the data.† For instance Vt was sometimes entered as Vermont or Daníl was input as Daniel.I have corrected those when I noticed them but there are too many to hunt down and compare to the census image to make sure the original spelling was used.† The end result gives the correct name.† It just isnít exactly what was on the original census.
We did not have enough volunteers to fully proofread this census, however, I checked it fairly closely as I merged it and then went back over it several times crosschecking suspicious looking names against other censuses.I found and corrected hundreds of errors in names.These errors were due to nearly illegible writing.† The transcribers did the best they could.† Iím sure I didnít catch all of the errors and those I did catch were only because I recognized the names from earlier censuses.† Where neither I nor the transcriber were able to make out names with any certainty a (?) is there to warn you.† If you go to the original census image you will see that the name is simply unreadable.† In a few instances I put a comment in parentheses near a family where I found additional name information from other sources.† After that I passed the transcription on to Cynthia Dean who spent many hours going over names and correcting transcription errors the rest of us missed.
The vast majority of the data is accurate but, as on every census transcription, I know there are undetected errors and I want the reader to be aware that the transcriptions arenít perfect.† That said, the index is far more accurate than the indexes now available for the microfilms that were transcribed.† And the transcription itself is far easier to read Ė not to mention the digital copies are computer searchable.† So if you canít find your ancestor by last name in the index, try a computer search by first name on a digital copy.† It may just be that the surname is so mangled you canít find it in the but will recognize the misspelling as your ancestorís name once you run across it on the census.
One final note.Most of the occupations listed in this census are easily understood even today Ė except one.Several men in this census had the occupation of ďOff Bearer.Ē† This was a dangerous job at a saw mill.† The off bearer stood next to the whirling blade and held the piece of lumber being cut from a log in place until the log had passed completely through the saw.If your ancestor had this job he obviously lived long enough to sire children; one of whom became your next generation ancestor.So count yourself lucky to be among the living today.
As always, on behalf of the Census Transcription Team I hope you find what you are looking for in this transcription, especially if you are working on a brick wall lineage, or if your ancestor was an off bearer.
Census Transcription Program