The 1871 project continues the University of Guelph commitment to historical census data and, more broadly, to social science history. From 1987 to 1991 Elizabeth Bloomfield, Gerald Bloomfield and Kris Inwood compiled a national database of information from the 1871 industrial census. An international conference at Guelph in 1993 enhanced visibility for census manuscript-based research. More recently Guelph has hosted international meetings focussing on economic history in Canada and Latin America, the methodology of historical data linkage, alcohol and drug history and the role of human capital in economic growth. The 1871 project emerges from the 1891 census project and long-standing Guelph commitments to Scottish Studies, rural history, and Economics Department activity in labour economics, econometrics and economic history. The University’s Historical Data Research Unit, with support from the College of Management and Economics, the College of Arts and the University Library, hosts the 1871 project. The project is housed in two workrooms on the 8th floor of the MacKinnon Building, one small room on the 6th floor of the McLaughlin Library and another in the History Department.