The United States was the first country to call for a regular census. This makes the 1790 census the oldest national census. The census recorded:
What was lost from the 1790 US Census?
Records for many states including Delaware, Georgia, New Jersey and Virginia were lost between 1790 and 1830.
Also, nearly a third of the original census data has been destroyed including records from Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina and Vermont.
Based on data collected from secondary sources (e.g. tax records), the 1790 Census was proven accurate.
1790 US Census Date: August 2, 1790 (All reported data is "as of" this official date chosen by the census Agency)
Census Duration: 9 months
1790 US Census Population: 3,929,326
President During Census: George Washington
14 States participated. The original 13 states, plus Vermont. Vermont did not become a state until March 4, 1791, so the state’s 1790 census was taken on April 4, 1791.
1790 Census Data: 1st United States Census
The decorated general became the first US president, and gave the first State of the Union speech January 8, 1790. Thomas Jefferson served as his Secretary of State.
On March 1, 1790, US President George Washington authorized the first US Census marking the first nationwide census of it's kind. The Connecticut Compromise proposed the legislature be broken into two separate bodies, leading to the Senate with equal representation for every state and the U.S. House of representatives, which based representation for each state on population.
The census started as merely statistical numbers, and evolved over the years to gather detailed information about a household's family history.
Historical Events Surrounding 1790 US Census