U.S. Geographic Summary Data and Boundary Files

The National Historical Geographic Information System (NHGIS) provides population, housing, agricultural, and economic data, along with GIS-compatible boundary files for geographic units in the United States from 1790 to the present. (Collection level DOI: 10.18128/C050)

Through NHGIS, users can download:

  • Boundary files for states and counties back to 1790; for census tracts back to 1910; for census blocks, places, and county subdivisions back to 1980; and for all other standard census units back to 1990.
  • Summary tables from all decennial censuses, the American Community Survey, agricultural and manufacturing censuses, and County Business Patterns.
  • Time series tables and geographic crosswalks that support studies of change across time with standardized geography and categories.

Research using NHGIS data has examined topics like state-by-state comparisons of health outcomes, segregation and diversity, food deserts, the implications of economic growth on surrounding areas, city location and economic development, gentrification and displacement, and the relationship between hate crimes and terrorism. For a complete list of NHGIS publications, please see the IPUMS bibliography.

Principal Investigators and senior personnel:

  • Steven Manson
  • Jonathan Schroeder
  • David Van Riper
  • Tracy Kulger
  • Catherine Fitch
  • Steven Ruggles
  • Michael Esposito
  • Elizabeth Wrigley-Field
  • Christopher Fowler

Supported by:

  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver Institute for Child Health and Human Development
  • National Science Foundation
  • University of Minnesota

ipums nhgis versions

18.010/01/2023 - Present10.18128/D050.V18.0
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17.008/01/2022 - 10/01/202310.18128/D050.V17.0
16.006/22/2021 - 08/01/202210.18128/D050.V16.0
15.008/01/2020 - 06/22/202110.18128/D050.V15.0
14.007/25/2019 - 08/01/202010.18128/D050.V14.0
13.009/06/2018 - 07/25/201910.18128/D050.V13.0
12.008/09/2017 - 09/06/201810.18128/D050.V12.0
11.008/16/2016 - 08/09/201710.18128/D050.V11.0