Content associated with: Age abstract, England and Wales, 1841    Page 385

An Act for taking an Account of the Population of Great Britain.

[10 August 1840]

3 & 4 Vict. c.99

Account of the Population to be taken. WHEREAS it is expedient to take an Account of the total Number of Persons within the Kingdom of Great Britain, be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the Authority of the same, That at the Time and in the Manner herein-after directed, an Account shall be taken of the Number of Persons who at the Time of taking such Account shall be within England and Scotland respectively, and the Persons employed in taking such Account shall set down the several Particulars respecting the same, according to such Form as shall be prescribed by the Commissioners herein-after mentioned.
Commissioners for taking Account of the Population. II. And be it enacted, That the Registrar General of Births, Deaths, and Marriages in England, with such other Person or Persons as shall be associated with him for that Purpose by Her Majesty, shall be Commissioners for taking account of the Population in Great Britain, and shall have the Care of superintending the taking of such Account, and of making such preliminary Inquiries as may be necessary to enable them to determine on the best Manner of putting this Act into execution, and shall prepare and cause to be printed for the Use of the Persons to be employed in taking such Account such Forms and Instructions as they shall deem necessary; and the Registrar General shall issue all Forms and Instructions which shall have been agreed upon by the said Commissioners to the Persons for whose Use they shall be intended; and all the Expenses which shall be incurred by the said Commissioners in performing the Duties assigned to them by this Act, and taking the said Account, not herein otherwise provided for, shall be deemed to be incurred in the Business of the General Register Office, and shall be defrayed accordingly.
Registrars Districts in England to be formed into Enumeration Districts. III. And be it enacted, That every Registrar's District in England shall be formed into One or more Enumeration Districts, according to such Instructions as shall be agreed upon by the said Commissioners; and the Registrar General shall send to every Registrar in England, on or before the Thirty-first Day of December next, a sufficient Number of Copies of such Instructions; and the Registrars, with all convenient Speed, shall divide the several Districts into Enumeration Districts, according to such Instructions, and subject in each Case to be revised by the Superintendent Registrars, and to the final Revision and Approval of the said Commissioners.
Enumerators to be appointed. IV. And be it enacted, That the several Registrars of Births and Deaths in England shall make and return to their Superintendent Registrar a List, containing the Names and Places of Abode of a sufficient Number of Persons, duly qualified according to such Instructions as shall have been agreed upon by the said Commissioners, to take Account of the Population within their several Districts, and such Persons when approved by the Superintendent Registrar, shall be appointed Enumerators for taking such Account, subject nevertheless to the Approval of the said Commissioners; and the Registrar, with the Approval of the Superintendent Registrar, shall assign a District to each Enumerator, and shall distribute to the Enumerators in his District the Forms and Instructions which shall have been issued for that Purpose by the Registrar General, and shall personally ascertain that each Enumerator fully and thoroughly understands the Manner in which the Duties required of him are to be performed.
Enumerators to take the Account in England on 1st July 1841. V. And be it enacted, That upon Thursday the First Day of July in the Year One thousand eight hundred and forty-one every such Enumerator, under the Direction of the Registrar of the District, shall visit every House within his District, except as herein-after provided, and shall take an Account in Writing of the Name, Sex, Age, and Occupation of every living Person who abode in therein on the Night of Wednesday the Thirtieth Day of June in the same Year, and shall also ascertain which of the Persons are Foreigners, and also which were born in the Parish and County in which they shall then be dwelling, and shall also take an Account of the Houses then building and therefore uninhabited, and also of all other uninhabited Houses within his District; and in such Account each Enumerator shall distinguish the several Parishes and Places maintaining their own Poor within his District, or such Parts thereof as shall be within his District, and shall also distinguish those Parishes and Place, or Parts of Parishes and Places, within his District, which are within the Limits of any City or Borough returning or contributing to return a Member or Members to serve in Parliament, or of any incorporated City or Borough, and shall sign and deliver such Account to the Registrar of the District, and also a Form of Declaration to the Effect that the said Account has been truly and faithfully taken by him, and that to the best of his Knowledge the same is correct, so far as may be known; which Form of Declaration shall be prepared and issued by the said Commissioners, with the Forms and Instructions to be issued by them as aforesaid.
Registrars to verify the Accounts. VI. And be it enacted, That the Registrar to whom such Accounts shall be delivered shall examine the same, and shall satisfy himself that the Instructions in each Case have been punctually fulfilled, and if not, shall cause any Defect or Inaccuracy in the said Accounts to be supplied, so far as may appear possible; and when the Accounts shall have been made as accurate as is possible the Registrar shall deliver them to the Superintendent Registrar of his District.
Superintendent Registrars to collect Accounts, and return them to Commissioners. VII. And be it enacted, That the Superintendent Registrar shall examine all Accounts which shall be so delivered to him, and shall satisfy himself how far the Registrars have duly performed the Duties required of them by this Act, and shall cause any Inaccuracies which he shall discover to be corrected, so far as may be possible, and shall return all the Accounts which shall have been delivered to him to the Registrar General, for the Use of the said Commissioners.
Abstracts of Returns to be printed, and laid before Parliament. VIII. And be it enacted, That the Commissioners shall cause Abstracts to be made of the said Returns, in such Form and Manner as shall be decided upon by the said Commissioners, with the Approval of One of Her Majesty's Principal Secretaries of State; and such Abstracts shall be printed, and laid before both Houses of Parliament, within Twelve Calendar Months next after the First Day of September in the Year One thousand eight hundred and forty-one, or if Parliament be not then sitting within the first Fourteen Days of the Session then next ensuing.
For obtaining Returns of the Number of Baptisms, Burials, &c. entered in the Parish Registers in England. IX. And whereas it is expedient that Return be made of the Number of Baptisms, Burials, and Marriages entered in the several Parish Registers in England, and other Particulars relative to the Ages of the buried, and to Births, Deaths, and Marriages, not entered in the Parish Register; be it enacted, That the said Commissioners shall cause to be printed a sufficient Number of Copies of this Enactment and of the Schedule annexed to this Act, and the Registrar General shall cause One Copy thereof to be delivered by the Registrars of Births and Deaths in England to every Rector, Vicar, Curate, or other Officiating Minister of every Parish or Place (Extra-parochial or otherwise) in England, including Free Chapels, Donatives and Peculiars; and every such Officiating Minister to whom such Schedule shall have been delivered, and having Custody of any Register which is not copied into the Register of a Mother Church, shall forthwith prepare an Answer or Return to the Questions relative to Baptisms, Burials, and Marriages in the said Schedule set forth, and shall, on or before the First Day of August in the Year One thousand eight hundred and forty-one, duly send such Answer or Return to the Bishop within the Limits of whose Diocese the said Parish or Place is situate; and the several Bishops shall, on or before the Fifteenth Day of August in the Year One thousand eight hundred and forty-one, send the same to the Archbishops of their respective Provinces, and thereupon the said Archbishops shall, on or before the First Day of September in the Year One thousand eight hundred and forty-one, cause the same to be laid before Her Majesty's most Honourable Privy Council, who shall cause an Abstract thereof to be prepared by the said Commissioners, and laid before both Houses of Parliament within Twelve Months after the First Day of September, or if Parliament shall not be then sitting within the first Fourteen Days of the Session next ensuing.
Copies of this Act, &c. to be sent to the Sheriff Deputes, Provosts, &c. in Scotland. X. And be it enacted, That the Registrar General shall send a printed Copy of this Act, and also a sufficient Number of all Forms and Instructions which the said Commissioners shall have agreed upon, to the Sheriff Depute of every County and Stewartry in Scotland, and to the Provost or other Chief Magistrate of every Royal Burgh in Scotland, with such Alterations in the said Forms and Instructions as to the said Commissioners shall seem necessary to make them applicable to the Circumstances of each Case.
Sheriff Deputes, &c. in Scotland to appoint Schoolmasters or other Persons to take the Account required in Scotland. XI. And be it enacted, That the Sheriff Deputes or their Substitutes, in their respective Counties and Stewartries, and the Provosts or other Chief Magistrates of the Royal Burghs, within the said Burghs, shall nominate and appoint, in Writing under the Hand of their respective Clerks, the Schoolmaster or other fit Person or Persons within their respective Jurisdictions, to take account of the several Matters required by this Act; and the Sheriff's Officers and Town Officers respectively are require forthwith to deliver the Forms and Instructions, prepared as aforesaid, for their Use, to the Schoolmaster, Person or Persons so appointed; and on the said First Day of July in the Year One thousand eight hundred and forty-one the Schoolmaster, Person or Persons so appointed, shall take an Account in Writing of the Name, Sex, Age, and Occupation of every living Person who abode therein on the Night of Wednesday the Thirtieth Day of June in the same Year, and shall ascertain which of such Persons were born in the Parish and County or Stewartry in which they shall then be dwelling, and also take an Account of the occupied Houses, and of the Houses then building, and therefore uninhabited, and also of all other uninhabited Houses within their District; and in such Account the Enumerators shall distinguish the several Parishes and Places maintaining their own Poor, and shall also distinguish those Parishes and Places, or Parts of Parishes and Places, which are within the Limits of any City or Borough returning or contributing to return a Member or Members to serve in Parliament, or Royal Burgh, and shall then exhibit the same to the Minister for the Parish, for his Correction and Approbation, and for any Observations which he may think fit to write thereupon; and the several Schoolmasters and other Person or Persons appointed shall thereafter sign the same with their Names and ordinary Designations.
Returns to be made to the Sheriff Deputes or their Substitutes in Scotland. XII. And be it enacted, That the Sheriff Deputes or their Substitutes, and the Provosts or other Chief Magistrates of the Royal Burghs, within their respective Jurisdictions, shall appoint a Time or Times, which shall not be sooner than the Eighth Day of July not later than the last Day of July in the Year one thousand eight hundred and forty-one, for the Schoolmaster, Person or Persons appointed by them as aforesaid, to attend at their Offices, or at such other Places as they shall appoint, with their Returns to be made under this Act; and the said Sheriff Deputes or their Substitutes, and Provosts or other Chief Magistrates, shall cause Notice to be given to them respectively for that Purpose accordingly, and shall then and there receive the Returns to be made as aforesaid, and cause every Schoolmaster or Person appointed to make such Returns as aforesaid to make a Declaration to the Effect that the said Account has been truly and faithfully taken, and that, to the best of his Knowledge, the same is correct, so far as may be known; and such Sheriff Deputes or their Substitutes, and Provosts, or other Chief Magistrates aforesaid, if they see Cause, may examine the said Schoolmaster, Person or Persons, touching any of the Matters contained in such Questions and Answers, especially as to the distinct Population of Parts of Parishes not wholly contained in one and the same County, or partly included in any Parliamentary Burgh (as aforesaid) or Royal Burgh, and shall thereafter direct their respective Clerks to indorse the same (if not previously indorsed) with the Name of the County and District thereof wherein the Parish or Place therein mentioned is situated, or otherwise (in Cases where the said Sheriff Deputes or their Substitutes shall think proper) they shall direct the Schoolmasters and other Persons aforesaid to verify the said Returns and Answers before any Justice of the Peace within the County, and thereafter to transmit the Schedule previously to the said last Day of July in any convenient Manner to the said Sheriff Deputes or their Substitutes, who shall direct the same to be indorsed as aforesaid.
Original Accounts taken by Schoolmasters in Scotland to be transmitted to the Secretary of State.
Abstract thereof to be made and laid before Parliament.
XIII. And be it enacted, That the Sheriff Deputes or their Substitutes, and Provosts or other Chief Magistrates of the Royal Burghs in Scotland, shall, on or before the First Day of September in the Year one thousand eight hundred and forty-one, send with all convenient Speed the several original Accounts so taken in Writing by the Schoolmasters or other Persons appointed as aforesaid in every Parish or Place in Scotland (together with a List of the Parishes and Places within their respective Counties, Ridings, or Divisions from whence no Returns have been made to them,) to One of Her Majesty's Principal Secretaries of State; and that an Abstract thereof shall be made by the said Commissioners, and shall be laid before both Houses of Parliament within Twelve Months after the said First Day of September, or if Parliament shall not be then sitting within the first Fourteen Days of the Session next ensuing.
Masters, &c. of Gaols, &c. to be appointed Enumerators of the Inmates thereof. XIV. And be it enacted, That the Master or keeper of every Gaol, Prison, or House of Correction, Workhouse, Hospital, or Lunatic Asylum, and of every public or charitable Institution which shall be determined upon by the said Commissioners, shall act as the Enumerator of the Inmates thereof, and shall be bound to conform to such Instructions as shall be sent to him by the Authority of the said Commissioners for obtaining the Returns required by this Act, so far as may be practicable with respect to such Inmates.
Returns of houseless Poor, and Persons travelling or on Shipboard. XV. And be it enacted, That the said Commissioners shall obtain, by such Ways and Means as shall appear to them best adapted for the Purpose, Returns of the Particulars required by this Act with respect to all houseless Persons, and all persons who, during the said Night of Wednesday the Thirtieth Day of June, were travelling or on Ship-board, or for any other Reason were not abiding in any House of which Account is to be taken by the Enumerators, Schoolmasters, and other Persons as aforesaid, and shall include such Returns in the Abstracts to be made by them as aforesaid.
Table of Allowances to Enumerators, &c. XVI. And be it enacted, That the said Commissioners shall prepare a Table of Allowances to be made to the several Enumerators, Registrars, Superintendent Registrars, Clerks, Schoolmasters, and other Persons employed in the Execution of this Act; and such Table, when approved by the Commissioners of the Treasury, shall be laid before both Houses of Parliament on or before the First Day of May One thousand eight hundred and forty-one, or if Parliament be then not sitting within the first Fourteen Days of the Session then next ensuing.
Payments to be made to Persons employed in the Execution of this Act in England. XVII. And be it enacted, That the Justices of the Peace in England, at their respective Michaelmas Quarter Sessions in the Year One thousand eight hundred and forty-one, or at the Quarter Sessions following, shall allow to the several Enumerators, Registrars, and Superintendent Registrars the Allowances to which they will be entitled according to the said Table, and shall order Payment thereof to be made out of the Poor's Rate of the several Parishes and Places in such Proportion as to them shall seem just, which Payment shall thereafter be allowed in the Accounts of the Overseers of the Poor; and the said Justices at the said Quarter Sessions shall also allow to the Parish Clerk, or any other Person who shall have assisted the Rector, Vicar, Curate, or other Officiating Minister in the Execution of this Act, the Allowances to which he will be entitled according to the said Table, upon his producing a Certificate from the said Officiating Minister to that Effect, and shall order Payment thereof to be made out of the Church Rate or Poor's Rate of the several Parishes or Places respectively, and the said Payment shall thereafter be allowed in the Accounts of the several Churchwardens or Overseers of the Poor; Provided always, that no such Payment shall be made to any Enumerator but upon Production of a Certificate under the Hand of the Registrar that the Duties required of such Enumerator by this Act have been faithfully performed; and the like Certificate shall be required under the Hand of the Superintendent Registrar with respect to the Registrar before any Payment shall be made to the Registrar, and the like Certificate under the Hand of One of the said Commissioners with respect to the Superintendent Registrar before any Payment shall be made to the Superintendent Registrar.
Payments to be made to Persons in Scotland. XVIII. And be it enacted, That the Sheriff Deputes or their Substitutes, and Provosts or other Chief Magistrates of the Royal Burghs in Scotland, shall allow to the Sheriff Clerk or Town Clerk respectively, for the Return which shall be made and transmitted from every Parish or Place in Scotland, the Sum of One Shilling, and to the Sheriff's Officer or Town Officer who shall distribute the Schedule to the Schoolmasters and others, for the like, the Sum of Two Shillings and Sixpence; and the said Sheriff Deputes or their Substitutes, and Provosts or other Chief Magistrates, shall allow to the Schoolmasters and others the Allowances to which they will be entitled according to the said Table, and shall order Payment thereof, and also of the Sums respectively payable to the Sheriff's Clerk or Town Clerk, and to the Sheriff's Officer or Town Officer, to be made by the Collector of the Land Tax of and for the Shire or other Place (as the Case shall require) out of any Money in his Hands, and such Collector shall pay the same accordingly.
Penalty for wilful Default XIX. And be it enacted, That every Superintendent Registrar, Registrar, and Enumerator, and also every Schoolmaster, or other Person so appointed as aforesaid, making wilful Default in any of the Matters required of them respectively by this Act, or making any wilfully Declaration, shall for every such wilful Default or False Declaration forfeit a Sum not exceeding Five Pounds nor less than Forty Shillings, at the Discretion of the Justice or Justices or Justices before whom Complaint thereof shall be made.
Penalty for refusing Information or giving false Answers. XX. And the better to enable the said Commissioners, Enumerators, Schoolmasters, and other Persons employed in the Execution of this Act to make the said Inquiries and Returns, be it enacted, That the said Enumerators, Schoolmasters, and other Persons shall be authorized to ask all such Questions of the Persons as shall be directed in the Instructions to be issued by the said Commissioners, with the Approval of one of Her Majesty's Principal Secretaries of State, which shall be necessary for making preliminary Inquiries and for obtaining the Returns required by this Act; and every Person refusing to answer, or wilfully giving a false Answer to such Questions, or any of them, shall for every such Refusal or wilfully false Answer forfeit a Sum not exceeding Five Pounds nor less than Forty Shillings, at the Discretion of any Justice of the Peace or Magistrate before whom Complaint thereof shall be made.
Recovery and Application of Penalties. XXI. And be it enacted, That the several Forfeitures and Penalties inflicted by this Act shall, if not immediately paid, be levied by Distress and Sales of the Offender's Goods and Chattels, by virtue of a Warrant under the Hand and Seal of any Justice of the Peace or Magistrate having Jurisdiction where such Offender shall dwell, rendering to the said Offender the Overplus (if any), after the Charge of such Distress and Sale shall be deducted; and in case sufficient Distress shall not be found then it shall be lawful for such Justice to commit such Offender to the Common Gaol, there to remain without Bail or Mainprize for a Term not exceeding Four Weeks, unless the said Forfeiture and Charges shall be sooner paid; and the said Forfeitures, when recovered in England, shall be paid, one Half to the Informer, and the other Half to the Treasurers of the several Counties or Boroughs, to be applied in aid of the County or Borough Rates respectively; and any Person shall be deemed a competent Witness for the Execution of any of the Purposes of this Act, notwithstanding his paying or being liable to pay towards any Poor's Rate or County or Borough Rate; and in case the said Forfeitures shall be recovered in Scotland, they shall be paid, one Half to the Informer, and the other Half to the Collector of the Land Tax of such County wherein the said Default shall be committed, to be by him applied in aid of the Expenditure incurred by reason of this Act.
Explanation Clause XXII. And be it enacted and declared, for Explanation of the full Intent and Meaning of certain Words used in this Act, That the Words "Parish or Place, Parishes or Places," shall include the various Denominations of Townships, Tythings, Hamlets, Villages, Chapelries, Quarters, Wards, Parcels, Lordships, Manors, or Parts of any Parish, and all other Places, whether denominated Vills, Precincts, or otherwise, and whether connected with any Parish, or deemed to be Extraparochial.
Act may be amended this Session XXIII. And be it enacted, That this Act may be amended or repealed by any Act to be passed in this Session of Parliament.

Schedule to which the foregoing Act refers.

Parish Register.

Questions to which, by Direction of an Act passed in the Fourth Year of the Reign of Her Majesty Queen Victoria, intituled [here insert Title of this Act], written Answers are to be returned by the Rector, Vicar, Curate, or Officiating Minister in England (having Custody of a Register which is not copied into the Register of a Mother Church), by whom a Return is to be made to the Bishop on or before the 21st June 1841.

1st. What was the Number of Baptisms and Burials in your Parish or Chapelry in the several Years from 1831 to 1840, both inclusive; distinguishing Males from Females?

2d. What has been the Number of Marriages in your Parish or Chapelry in the several Years from 1831 to 1840, both inclusive?

3rd. Be pleased to specify, on the Schedules annexed for that Purpose, the Ages of Individuals registered in your Burial Register in the several Years from 1831 to 1840, both inclusive; distinguishing Males from Females.

4th. What Number of illegitimate Children may have been born in your Parish or Chapelry during the Year 1840, according to the best Information you posses or can obtain; and distinguishing Male and Female Children?

5th. Are there any Matters which you think it necessary to remark, in explanation of your Answers to either of the preceding Questions? Especially, whether any and what annual average Number of Births, Deaths, and Marriages may, in your Opinion, have taken place in your Parish, without being noticed in the Parish Register?


FORM of ANSWERS by the CLERGYMEN in ENGLAND to the FIRST and SECOND QUESTIONS contained in the Schedule to an Act, 4 VICTORIÆ, intituled, [here insert Title of this Act].

Diocese of                   and County &c.                  Deanery, or Jurisdiction, &c.             City, Town, &c.                   Parish or Chapelry, &c.
QUESTION 1st. QUESTION 2d.
YEARS. BAPTISMS. BURIALS. YEARS. NUMBER OF MARRIAGES.
Males. Females. Males. Females.
1831         1831  
1832         1832  
1833         1833  
1834         1834  
1835         1835  
1836         1836  
1837         1837  
1838         1838  
1839         1839  
1840         1840  

I, A. B. [Rector, Vicar, Curate, or Officiating Minister,] of the Parish, Chapelry, &c., of               in the County of               do certify, That the above Return contains, to the best of my Knowledge and Belief, a full and true Answer to the several Questions contained in the Schedule to an Act, intituled [here insert Title of this Act]                             A. B.

Witness to the Signature of the Clergyman, C. D. One of the Churchwardens [or substantial Householder] of the Parish of               this               Day of             


QUESTION 4th. NUMBER of illegitimate Children born in the Year 1830.             Males.             Females.


QUESTION 5th. REMARKS in explanation of the Matters stated in answer to the several Questions.


Estimated annual average Number of unentered

Marriages             Births.             Deaths.            


PARISH of                                                 REGISTERED BURIALS, 1831
Column 1. Column 2. Column 3. Column 4.
Ages Males Females Ages Males Females Ages Males Females Ages Males Females
Under One Year -- -- 4 -- -- 32 -- -- 67 -- --
-- -- -- -- 33 -- -- 68 -- --
-- -- -- -- 34 -- -- 69 -- --
-- -- 5 -- -- 35 -- -- 70 -- --
-- -- -- -- 36 -- -- 71 -- --
-- -- -- -- 37 -- -- 72 -- --
-- -- 6 -- -- 38 -- -- 73 -- --
-- -- -- -- 39 -- -- 74 -- --
-- -- -- -- 40 -- -- 75 -- --
-- -- 7 -- -- 41 -- -- 76 -- --
-- -- -- -- 42 -- -- 77 -- --
-- -- 8 -- -- 43 -- -- 78 -- --
-- -- 9 -- -- 44 -- -- 79 -- --
-- -- 10 -- -- 45 -- -- 80 -- --
-- -- 11 -- -- 46 -- -- 81 -- --
-- -- 12 -- -- 47 -- -- 82 -- --
-- -- 13 -- -- 48 -- -- 83 -- --
-- -- 14 -- -- 49 -- -- 84 -- --
-- -- 15 -- -- 50 -- -- 85 -- --
1 -- -- 16 -- -- 51 -- -- 86 -- --
-- -- 17 -- -- 52 -- -- 87 -- --
-- -- 18 -- -- 53 -- -- 88 -- --
-- -- 19 -- -- 54 -- -- 89 -- --
-- -- 20 -- -- 55 -- -- 90 -- --
-- -- 21 -- -- 56 -- --   -- --
-- -- 22 -- -- 57 -- --   -- --
-- -- 23 -- -- 58 -- --   -- --
2 -- -- 24 -- -- 59 -- --   -- --
-- -- 25 -- -- 60 -- --   -- --
-- -- 26 -- -- 61 -- --   -- --
-- -- 27 -- -- 62 -- --   -- --
-- -- 28 -- -- 63 -- --   -- --
3 -- -- 29 -- -- 64 -- --   -- --
-- -- 30 -- -- 65 -- --   -- --
-- -- 31 -- -- 66 -- --   -- --
Defective Registry of Ages.

In Burial Grounds of Dissenters, Jews, and others.
            SUMMARY
        Males Females Total
      1st Column      
      2nd Column      
      3rd Column      
      4th Column      

[Ten similar Pages, numbered consecutively 1831-1840, are to be transmitted to every officiating Minister in England.]