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Census of 1852: Enumerating California


Since 1852, the role of the government and its function in American society has immensely grown and as a result, so has the significance of census-taking. In addition to determining representation in Congress, census data informs the allocation of billions of dollars in funding. The census reflects and helps communicate the needs of the people to politicians and government officials. Past censuses, like the Census of 1852, contain priceless knowledge of lives long gone.

“Shelved Census of 1852 Volumes,” Photograph, California State Archives Imaging Team, California State Archives.