1890 New York City Police Census

For Manhattan and West Bronx (New York County) - A Genealogy Research Guide

1890 New York City Police Census Research Guide
After the 1890 Federal census was taken, New York City officials decided that the Federal census had failed to give an accurate count of the citizens of New York City. So they undertook a new census. This was done between September 19 and October 14, 1890, and was enumerated by New York City Policemen. 13% more residents were found than were included in the 1890 Federal Census. This census produced 1008 books and 894 of these still exist.

Information included in this census... street and number, name, sex and age, patrolman and enumerator, and police precinct. These records are available for Manhattan and the West Bronx (New York County) only. Since the 1890 Federal Census records for New York City have not survived, this Police census can be helpful if you have ancestors who were living in Manhattan in 1890.

The New York City Police Census for 1890 is available on microfilm from the LDS Family History Library. Microfilm rolls can be ordered from many local FamilySearch Centers for viewing and photocopying for a fee. An index for the census (by name) is available online from FamilySearch.

New York City Police Census 1890...
  • 1890 New York City Police Census Index (partial) (requires payment - part of an Ancestry subscription) includes 26 police census books (of 894 total that still exist - these are numbers 2, 5-7, 58-61, 953-966, 969, 971-972, 977, 980, 982-983, 990)
Additional Finding Aids...
  • Microfilmed NYC directories from the Family History Library...
    • 1889/90 Trow's New York City Directory... FHL Roll #1377196
    • 1890/91 Trow's New York City Directory... FHL Roll #1377197
Once you have an address you can use this guide might help to locate which district that address is in...
  • "Maps, Assembly Districts (A.D.) 1-24, and Election Districts (E.D.) located in the A.D.; (With: Wilson's Street and Avenue Directory of the City of New York, corrected May 1, 1888)" - Available on Microfilm from the Family History Library - FHL Microfilm Roll #1304784, Item 1
  • "Aid to finding addresses in the 1890 New York City police census : an index of all street addresses on 14th Street and those south of 14th Street. Over 20,000 addresses on over 270 streets" - Available on Microfiche from the Family History Library - Microfiche #6003143 (2 microfiches)
Related Resources... Helpful Book...
  • Aid to Finding Addresses in 1890 New York City Police Census by Howard M. Jensen - you might try your local public library
These are merely suggestions to help locate a person in the NYC Police Census of 1890. There is no guarantee of success. Be aware that some of these records have not survived and a person may have moved from the address given in a city directory. You also may not be able to find someone for a variety of other reasons. See additional disclaimers at the link below.

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