1911 census goes online

More than 27 million records from the 1911 census have been placed online – an impressive three years ahead of schedule.

The site includes the handwritten images of the original census returns, contained within a fully searchable archive.

The census papers – which were completed seven years before women got the vote – bear witness to the growing suffrage movement, with one otherwise blank return merely containing the handwritten message: “If I am intelligent enough to fill in this paper, I am intelligent enough to put a cross on a voting paper.”

Today’s launch sees data from 36 counties made available, with the remaining nine million records due to be made available in the coming months.

Wary of the deluge of traffic that forced the original 1901 census site offline for months, the 1911 site is taking precautions to guard against a flood of genealogists.

Certain search functions have been disabled during the launch period and original census pages have to be downloaded, rather than viewed in the browser.

The site’s also prepared to shut the virtual door if it attracts too many visitors. “During launch, if the site becomes exceptionally busy, we will also restrict the number of new people entering the site,” the 1911 Census Blog claims.

“We want to allow the people who are already using the site to complete their searches rather than make the site impossibly slow for everybody.”

Click here to access the 1911 Census Site.

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