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Geographic Areas Reference Manual

The Geographic Areas Reference Manual (GARM) describes in great detail the basic geographic entities the Census Bureau used in its various data tabulations for the 1990 Census and documents the purposes, definitions, standards, criteria, and procedures used to select, define, delineate, and revise those geographic entities.

After the publication of the GARM in November 1994, there were two major changes in geographic areas for Census 2000:


  • The Census Bureau no longer includes the Republic of Palau in U. S. censuses because it became an independent state on October 1, 1994.
  • All entities referred to as "block numbering areas" (BNAs) in 1990 became census tracts.

View or Download the Geographic Areas Reference Manual PDF files:  


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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Geography | (301) 763-1128 |  Last Revised: March 04, 2013