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1860 Federal Census of the
Dakota Territory

 1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory 1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory 1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory

Reliabilty Rating  1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory  1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory  1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory  1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory  1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory

The 1860 federal census is the eighth census of the United States. It was authorized by Congress on May 23, 1850 (9 Stat. 428), and was begun on June 1, 1860. The enumeration was to be completed within five months.

When Minnesota became a state on May 11, 1858, the vast region of the former western counties of Pembina, Mankahta, Wahnahta, Dakotah, and Wabashaw of the old Minnesota Territory was left without territorial government for nearly three years prior to the creation of the Dakota Territory on March 2, 1861.

This great "unorganized territory" between Minnesota and the Missouri River came to be known as "Unorganized Dakota." The western region of present-day North Dakota and South Dakota, west of the Missouri River, was still part of the Nebraska Territory prior to the creation of the Dakota Territory in 1861.

In the meantime the 1860 federal census was taken, and "Unorganized Dakota" was enumerated right along with the rest of the growing nation, even though it was not yet an official territory of the United States.

The 1860 enumeration of "Unorganized Dakota" included settlers in Pembina and old Fort Abercrombie in present-day North Dakota, and the communities of Medary, Sioux Falls, Vermillion, and the Yankton Agency, in present-day South Dakota.

Several military forts (trading posts) were also enumerated along the Missouri River's west bank and northern reaches, even though they were technically in the Nebraska Territory, not in "Unorganized Dakota." These forts included Fort William, Fort Berthold, and Fort Clark, in present-day North Dakota, and Dirtville, Fort Pierre, Old Fort George, Fort Lookout, and Old Cedar Fort, in present-day South Dakota. Fort Alexander and Fort Union in present-day Montana were also enumerated with "Unorganized Dakota," even though these two trading posts were part of the Nebraska Territory in 1860. Just to make matters more confusing, the U. S. Army's Fort Randall, in present-day South Dakota, was enumerated with the Nebraska Territory.

Two sites in the 1860 census of "Unorganized Dakota" have not been located: Orphan's Village (two inhabitants) presumably in the Red River Valley of North Dakota, and the Old Trading House (twenty-three inhabitants) north of the Niobrara River in present-day South Dakota or Nebraska.

The enumeration of the entire 1860 Federal Census of "Unorganized Dakota" was completed between June 1 and November 1, 1860 by one single man, Oscar W. Streeter of Breckenridge, Minnesota, who traveled the vast territory on horseback to complete the enumeration of this first Dakota territorial census. A total of 4,837 persons were enumerated in "Unorganized Dakota" in 1860.

The 1860 federal census contains this information:

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory  address

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  name of every person in the family

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  age

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  sex

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  color

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  profession, occupation, or trade

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  value of real estate

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  value of personal estate

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  state, territory, or country of birth

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  whether married within the year

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  whether attended school within the year

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  whether over 20 years of age, and unable to read or write

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory
  whether deaf-mute, blind, insane, idiotic, pauper, or convict

The "Unorganized" Dakota Territory in 1860

Enumerated Region

Population of the
Dakota Territory
in 1860

Between Big Sioux and Big Stone Lake
(in present-day South Dakota)

28 white males
16 white females
6 Indian males
5 Indian females
55

Between Red River and Big Sioux
(in present-day North Dakota and South Dakota)

123 white males
75 white females
20 Indian males
15 Indian females
233

Big Sioux Lake
(in present-day South Dakota)

3 white males
3 Indian males
3 Indian females
9

Dirtville
(in present-day South Dakota)

5 Indian males
4 Indian females
9

Fort Alexander
(in present-day Montana, part of the Nebraska Territory in 1860)

6 Indian males
8 Indian females
14

Fort Clark
(in present-day North Dakota, part of the Nebraska Territory in 1860)

7 Indian males
4 Indian females
11

Fort Lookout
(in present-day South Dakota)

2 white males
8 Indian males
8 Indian females
18

Fort Pierre
(in present-day South Dakota)

3 white males
1 white female
7 Indian males
6 Indian females
17

Fort Union
(in present-day Montana, part of the Nebraska Territory in 1860)

5 Indian males
5 Indian females
10

Fort William
(in present-day North Dakota, part of the Nebraska Territory in 1860)

2 white males
11 Indian males
10 Indian females
23

Medary
(in present-day South Dakota)

1 Indian male

Old Cedar Fort
(in present-day South Dakota)

2 white males
6 Indian males
7 Indian females
15

Old Fort George
(in present-day South Dakota)

7 Indian males
2 Indian females
9

Old Trading House
(not located, presumably north of the
Niobrara River in present-day
South Dakota or Nebraska.)

3 white males
4 white females
10 Indian males
6 Indian females
23

On the Big Sioux
(in present-day South Dakota)

21 white males
13 white females
34

On the Red River
(in present-day North Dakota)

40 white males
14 white females
10 Indian males
12 Indian females
76

Orphan's Village
(not located, presumably in the
Red River Valley of North Dakota)

1 white male
1 Indian female
2

Pembina
(in present-day North Dakota)

973 white males
633 white females
1,038 Indian males
910 Indian females
3,554

Sioux Falls city
(in present-day South Dakota)

27 white males
9 white females
1 Indian male
1 Indian female
38

Vermillion
(in present-day South Dakota)

126 white males
99 white females
3 Indian females
228

Yankton Agency
(in present-day South Dakota)

238 white males
120 white females
54 Indian males
46 Indian females
458

Total

4,837

1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory 1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory 1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory 1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory 1860 Federal Census of the Dakota Territory

 

     

 

 

 

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