I am looking for Census Place of Birth data for pre-civil war Kentucky. I am trying to determine, for example, how many people on the 1850 Kentucky Census were born in Virginia or North Carolina. I would like to start with 1860 and go back as far as I am able, assuming such data has been calculated. Where might I find such data? Thank you in advance for any help on this issue.
If you’re looking for aggregate state-level place of birth data, my recommendation is to start with IPUMS NHGIS, which provides official census tabular data. This user guide will explain how to access this data and filter tables using the Data Finder tool. When filtering by year (1850) and topic (Nativity and Place of Birth), you should see the table NT12. Place of Birth. This table reports 65 different birthplaces on the state level from the 1850 census. Place of birth however did not appear in decennial censuses prior to 1850, meaning that other sources would need to be consulted to trace the composition of the state’s population prior to 1850.