May 8, 2014

Pages 1432-1433
Whole Number 75

SPARKS FAMILIES LISTED ON THE 1820 CENSUS OF GEORGIA



The first federal census of the population of the United States was taken in 1790 and has been repeated every ten years since then. Unfortunately, when the British burned Washington in 1814, the federal census records of Georgia for 1790, 1800, and 1810 were all destroyed. The 1820 census, therefore, is the earliest that is extant for the state, but even this is incomplete - - the 1820 census records for Franklin, Rabun, and Twiggs Counties are lost. In 1963, the Georgia Historical Society prepared an index to the 1820 census (except for the three counties mentioned above). Using this index, Carrie Grant Heppen, our Washingto researcher, has checked each county in which the index revealed the presence of a Sparks. We believe, therefore, that the following is a complete list of persons named Sparks enumerated on the 1820 census of Georgia, except for the counties of Franklin, Rabun, and Twiggs.

In 1820, there were 47 counties in the state of Georgia. Of these, persons named Sparks were listed in only 8, although from other records we know that there were also Sparks families in Franklin County.

In all federal census records prior to 1850, only the name of the head of the household was given. The entire household, including the head, was then enumerated by sex and age groups. Usually the head of the household was the oldest male, the oldest female was usually his wife, and the younger members were usually his children. Where a female was listed as head of the family, we can usually assume that she was the oldest female enumerated. We must remember, however, that if in-laws, nephews and nieces, brothers and sisters, hired men and women, etc., were living in the family at the time the census was taken, they too were enumerated as part of the household.

In the 1820 census, male members of a household were enumerated in six different age categories: those under 10 years; those 10 years old but under 16; those between 16 and 18 who were eligible for military service; those who were 16 but under 26, including those listed in the previous column as between 16 and 18; those who were 26 but under 45; and those who were 45 years of age and older. Females were divided in the same age groups except no enumeration was made of those between 16 and 18,

The attempt to determine the military strength of the country in 1820 by counting those males between 16 and 18 who were able to bear arms caused a considerable amount of confusion. While a young man enumerated in the 16 to 18 category was supposed to he included also in the 16 to 26 column, some census takers failed to count him a second time, while others left the 16 to 18 column blank.

  Males  Females  Slaves 
 . 0
10
10
16
16
18
18
26
26
45
45
up
 ||||| 0
10
10
16
16
26
26
45
45
up
M F
Gwinnett County  . . . . .  |||||  . . . . . . .
               |||||              
  Jeremiah Sparks (p. 19) 1 1 1 2 1  ||||| 3 2 1 1   0 0
                 |||||              
Habersham County                 |||||          
                 |||||              
  William Sparks (p. 115) 1       1    ||||| 1   1     0
                 |||||              
Jasper County                 |||||              
                 |||||              
  John Sparks (p. 208) 1 1     1    ||||| 1 1   1   0 0
  John Sparks, Sr. (p. 226) 2 2   1 1    ||||| 2     1   0 0
  Eleven Sparks  (p. 232) 1       1    ||||| 1   1   0 0
  Benj. Sparks (p. 232) 2 3     1    ||||| 1 2 1 1   3 2
                 |||||              
Laurens County                 |||||              
                 |||||              
  Mrs. Mary Sparks (p. 73) 2 1          ||||| 2 2 1 1   0 0
                 |||||              
Morgan County                 |||||              
                 |||||              
  Martin P. Sparks (p. 50) 1     1 1    ||||| 1   1     5 5
  Jeremiah Sparks (p. 52) 1       1  |||||         1 4 4
  John Sparks (p. 56) 2 1 1 2 1    ||||| 1 1 2     0 0
  John Sparks (p. 57) 2 1 1 2 1    ||||| 1 1 1     0 0
  David Sparks (p. 65) 2       1    ||||| 1     1   0 0
                 |||||              
Putnam County                 |||||              
                 |||||              
  Thomas Sparks (p. 157) 3 3   1 1  |||||   1   1   9 3
  Robert Sparks (p. 163) 3       1    ||||| 2     1   0 0
                 |||||              
Walton County                 |||||              
  Abel Sparks (p. 125)   2       1  ||||| 1   3   1 0 0
                 |||||              
Washington County                 |||||              
                 |||||              
  Sarah Sparks  (p. 11) 1       1    ||||| 2     1   0 0
  John Sparks  (p. 11)   1   1   1  |||||     1     3 2

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