16    Apr 20100 comments

1791 U.S. Census Sold

A first edition of the first U.S. census signed by Thomas Jefferson in 1791 has been sold at auction in New York City for over US $122,000.

The census lists all people across the then 13 states of American, and South-West Territory, by both state and county. The 1791 census lists the population for New York City and county - Manhattan and the South Bronx - as 33,131 and the Washington, D.C., area, with some districts unreported, as 35,691 people.

People are divided into four categories: free white males 16 years and upward, free white males under 16, free white females, all other free persons and slaves.

The first census was a headcount that did not include the amount of land or animals owned and was intended for viewing by the political class, not the public

Jefferson was Secretary of State at the time and his signature certified that the information was an official accurate count. The census was part of a large collection of American history owned by the late newspaper publisher James S. Copley.

US census

The collection also included letters, presidential autographs, scientific documents by Isaac Newton, Marie Curie and Albert Einstein, an unpublished manuscript by writer Mark Twain, A Family Sketch gives an intimate portrait of his early home life and more.

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