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Codes and Frequencies

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RACE codes an individual's race into a variation of the three-digit classification of race used by the IPUMS.


The 1901 Canadian census contains an enquiry about color which has been integrated with the RACE variable. We have classified original responses of "yellow" as Chinese (400).

The Canadian census of 1881 enquired about a person's "origin," a different but overlapping concept. The 1881 Canadian Census project has retained a great deal of detail about Indian tribal affiliations in the variables ORIGIN and ORIGN2CA. In 1901 Canadian census, race was traced through the father among white. Persons of mixed white and red blood, breed was indicated. When several races are combined with the red, the entry was "other breed". Researchers interested in specific racial or ethnic populations residing in both Canada and the United States, such as the Chinese or people of African descent should use both sets of variables, ORIGIN and RACE.

The Canadian 1911 census also enquired about a person's racial, tribal or ethnic origin. Race is proxied with the ORIGIN variable. In particular, "white" refers to persons with European, Middle-Eastern, South American, Oceanian, Jewish, or non-aboriginal American and Canadian origins. Persons with African and Caribbean origins are classified as "black".

Note that this variable is not completely compatible with the IPUMS variable RACE. NAPP has not allocated missing values, and does not have multiple race responses. The codes are compatible below code 800.


  • All persons


  • Canada: 1901, 1911
  • United States: 1850a, 1850b, 1860, 1870, 1880a, 1880b, 1900, 1910