Shropshire History


1841 Census


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1841 Census

















In 1841, the Government held the first comprehensive census of the population of Great Britain. The country was divided into small areas and local enumerators recorded who was living at each household on the night of 6th June. They also recorded the age, sex, occupation and whether the person was born in the county. Forms were delivered to every household a few days before the day of the census for completion by the householder. They were collected by the enumerator on 7th June and they would help in the completion of the form if the householder was illiterate. Children under 15 were to have their age recorded accurately, while those over 15 were to be rounded down to the nearest 5 years, eg someone aged 53 would be recorded as aged 50. However, not all enumerators followed this instruction and exact ages were sometimes recorded.


The census included the use of abbreviations to describe professions, eg


  • Ag. Lab - Agricultural labourer
  • Ap. - Apprentice
  • Army - Member of HM land forces of whatever rank
  • Cl. - Clerk
  • FS. - Female servant
  • H.P. - Members of HM armed forces on half-pay
  • Ind. - Independent - people living on their own means
  • J. - Journeyman
  • M. - Manufacturer
  • m. - Maker e.g. Boot m.
  • MS. - Male servant
  • Navy - Member of HM naval forces of whatever rank including marines
  • P. - Pensioners of HM armed forces
  • Sh. – Shopman


One big problem for modern day historians is that the entries were written, usually in pencil. This can make then difficult to interpret due to old fashioned writing styles and faint photocopies from the original documents.




Mining Industry in Census Records


The occupation was shown as part of the census and mining related entries have been extracted for the following parishes :-


Brimstree District

-         Shifnal Parish


Chirbury District

-         Aston Pigot Parish

-         Chirbury Parish

-         Habberley Parish

-         Hyssington Parish

-         Shelve Parish


Condover District

-         Church Pulverbatch Parish

-         Condover Parish

-         Frodesley Parish

-         Leebotwood Parish

-         Longnor Parish

-         Meole Brace Parish

-         St Julian Parish


Ford District

-         Westbury Parish


Click on the tabs above to see these.


The other three parishes of Minsterley, Pontesbury and Worthen run together and were the location of much mining activity in the past. Whereas Worthen and Minsterley had lead mining, Pontesbury predominantly had coal mining. Click on the tabs above to load PDF files with a full list of entries for those parishes.