Hello there, today is the first Tuesday Tip and I’m excited to share this with you!

One genealogy database that I find to be incredibly overlooked is Ancestry’s “U.S., Selected Federal Census Non-Population Schedules, 1850-1880.”

One reason I think this is such an overlooked source because the index for the database doesn’t say a lot. Here’s an example of my 6th great grandfather’s record in the database in 1860.

But there is so much more when you looked at the actual record, you can find out so much about the land your ancestors farmed, the livestock they owned, and what they produced that year. This is all the information I found out about my 6th great grandfather, Isaac Murphy.

  • He owned 470 acres of land in 1860.
  • 280 acres was improved
  • 190 unimproved
  • His farm was worth 14,100 dollars at the time and all his farming equipment was worth about $200.
  • As for livestock, my ancestor’s farm was home to…
  • 9 horses
  • 3 milch cows
  • 9 other cattle
  • 21 sheep
  • And 45 swine
  • All these animals were worth $1,459.
  • As for produce made during the year, my 6th great grandfather had a successful farm going, producing…
  • 200 bushels of wheat
  • 5,000 bushels of corn
  • 80 bushels of oats
  • 84 pounds of wool
  • And 15 tons of hay
  • This is amazing data, now I know more about my ancestor, what their farm was like, and what their work as a farmer looked like.

Hope this helps you find out a bit more about your ancestors who were farmers. Stay tuned for next week’s Tuesday Tips!