The following links provide direct access to the United States Census of Population and other popular data collection programs of the U.S. Census Bureau. The other tabs on the Guide provide detailed help on searching for Census data by geographic areas.
Background on the U.S. Census
- What We Do--About the U.S. Census describes the what, why, when, and how of the various censuses that they conduct.
- About Census Geography
- Frequently Asked Questions
Major Access Points for the U.S. Census
- American Factfinder interface that allows one to build a specific search of the latest Census of Population and Housing, American Community Survey, and Economic Census. NOTE: The Census Bureau advises users that pop-up blocker software may affect American Factfinder in unusual ways. So, if you use a pop-up blocker, make sure it is turned off when you use American Factfinder.
- 2010 Census quick access and description of the latest Census of Population and Housing.
- Census of Population and Housing Publications, contains Zip files of PDFs of the printed decennial censuses from 1790 to 2010.
- State & County QuickFacts is also a good starting point for state, county, and city-level (for cities with populations over 25,000 people) information.
- Subjects A-Z This is another starting point if you think the social, demographic, or economic information you want should be at the U.S. Census Bureau site, but you don't know where.
Additional Access Points
- Easy Stats provides quick and easy access to selected statistics collected by the U.S. Census Bureau through the American Community Survey.
- Data Access Tools includes links to additional search engines and databases.
- CenStats Databases
- Search or browse topics on the Census website when all else fails.
- Statistical Abstract of the United States (Proquest)--compilation and updates of the U.S. Census Bureau's free product, which was discontinued with the 2012 edition (see below), now produced by Proquest, a commercial vendor. Note: remote access for CSUN only; community members may request guest accounts for workstations in the Oviatt Library to access the database. Help using the database is available.
Sources of Census Data prior to 2010
Since American FactFinder only has the last decennial census and American Community Survey data, to find earlier data, one must rely on the following:
Historical Census Browser from the University of Virginia Library includes state and county level data from the Census from 1790 to 1960.
Statistical Abstract of the United States--comprehensive summary of statistics on the social, political, and economic organization of the United States current and historical years of Statistical Abstract of the United States are available from the U.S. Census Bureau, 1878-2012; see the Library Catalog record for print years of Statistical Abstract with the most recent in the Oviatt Library Reference Room (ref HA 202). Note: Due to Federal budget cuts, the 2012 Statistical Abstract is the last edition to be published by the U.S. Census Bureau. For current editions, see above.
The sources listed below are available in the Oviatt Library. The catalog record has a "map it!" button to lead you to the shelf location of the volumes. Additional years of the Census maybe found by searching the Library Catalog by title, "YYYY census of .... ." For example:
1990 census of population and housing. Population and housing characteristics for census tracts and block numbering areas (Los Angeles census tract data is in the volumes numbered CPH-3-215B)
1980 census of population and housing. Census tracts (Los Angeles census tract data is in the volumes numbered PHC80-2- 226)