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MU History and Local History

Individual vs Aggregate Census Data

The 1940 census is the latest Census that has been opened up for viewing of individual household data. For later censuses, only aggregate data is available (city, county, state, federal level). See the Census Guide for links and information on aggregate census data.

One strategy to use, to get a snapshot of a Columbia street or neighborhood, from an early 20th century census, is to look up a known individual's name in Ancestry.com (free trial subscriptions available, or get access through the public library, through March 2021 only), and look at the whole census page where the census taker wrote down their information. Individuals to look up in this way might be MU faculty or administrators named in archival files, university publications or yearbooks from the year of the census.

image of census page illlustrating the tabular information that can be found on a neighborhood

Census Guide