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Apportionment

Apportionment Legislation 1840 - 1880

  • An Act Providing for Apportionment following the 1840 Census (June 25, 1842) Download PDF [82KB PDF]
    • Set the ratio to one member of Congress for every 70,680 residents. Decreased the size of the House of Representatives to 223 seats. The Webster method of apportionment was used. The act also required, for the first time, that states be split into congressional districts according to their apportionment, and that a single representative be elected from each district.
  • Census Act of 1850 (May 23, 1850) Download PDF [908KB PDF]
    • Set the size of the House of Representatives at 233 seats. Directed the secretary of the interior to use the Hamilton/Vinton method to apportion those 233 seats among the states.
  • An Act Amending the Census Act of 1850 (June 30, 1852) Download PDF [83KB PDF]
    • Ordained that California's House delegation should be two seats (the state could not be effectively included in the regular apportionment, because some of its census returns had been destroyed in a fire). Increased the size of the House of Representatives to 234 seats in order to accommodate this amendment. Additionally, 234 seats is the House size at which the Webster and Hamilton/Vinton methods agree on apportionment.
  • An Act Providing for Apportionment following the 1860 Census (March 4, 1862) Download PDF [73KB PDF]
    • Increased the size of the House of Representatives to 241 seats. Pennsylvania, Ohio, Kentucky, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Vermont, and Rhode Island were each awarded an additional seat.
  • An Act Providing for Apportionment following the 1870 Census (February 2, 1872) Download PDF [172KB PDF]
    • Increased the size of the House of Representatives to 283 seats that were apportioned using the Webster and the Hamilton/Vinton methods, which agree at this chamber size.
  • An Act Amending 1870 Apportionment (May 30, 1872) Download PDF [78KB PDF]
    • Awarded one additional House seat each New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Tennessee, Louisiana, Alabama, and Florida.
  • An Act Providing for Apportionment following the 1880 Census (February 25, 1882) Download PDF [325KB PDF]
    • Increased the size of the House of Representatives to 325 seats, which is again the chamber size at which the Webster and Hamilton/Vinton methods agree.

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Census History Staff | Last Revised: October 24, 2013