Census – The Family Historian's Guide
by Peter Christian
& David Annal
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Paperback, 368 pages
Published: August 2014
ISBN-13: 978-1472902931
Price £16.99

A comprehensive and authoritative guide to an essential group of records for the family historian.

The census is one of the core group of genealogical records, essential for family, local and social historians, yielding key information about our ancestors including their names, addresses, ages, family relationships and occupations.

In the last 15 years, online indexes and images have revolutionised the use of these records by family historians, with easily searchable national indexes. Now, for the first time, all the publicly available censuses can be searched online, on a range of commercial and free sites.

This one-stop guide covers everything you need to know about the 1841-1911 censuses in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland, from the days of the enumerators knocking on everyone's doors to the online access of the present day.

Much of the book focuses on getting the best results from online research, given issues like competing websites and variable index and image quality. Other ways of accessing the census - from original records to microfilm and CD-ROM - are covered in full.

This new, fully revised edition takes account of all the significant developments of the last few years, including the full release of the 1911 census, the completion of Ireland's census digitisation project, and many changes to commercial and free census websites. There is also new material on the official census documentation and how to cite census records in your family history.

Complete with illustrations, photographs, screenshots and case histories, Census – The Family Historian's Guide is essential reference for anyone seeking to tap this unique resource, whether researching an individual or a locality.

More detailed information in the extract What you will find in this book.


Peter Christian is author of the best-selling The Genealogistís Internet, published by the National Archives. A Fellow of the Society of Genealogists and former editor of Computers in Genealogy, he has written widely about online genealogy and is highly regarded in the field.

David Annal, an expert on census and other family history records, worked at the National Archives and Family Records Centre for more than ten years between 1998 and 2009. He is author of the very successful Easy Family History, published by Bloomsbury Press, and now runs his own professional research business, Lifelines Research.


This page was last revised by Peter Christian, July 18 2014.
Please report any errors or problems to census@spub.co.uk.
All material on these pages © 2008 Peter Christian.