Census records are periodic recordings of inhabitants by the government for population or taxation purposes. Other records are “census-like” in that they recorded similar information as censuses, but for different purposes. Census and census-like records are extremely significant sources for family history research because they provide several personal details about each recorded person, and because they usually recorded individuals in family groups. <br><br> Government conducted censuses were typically taken every 5 or 10 years. Census-like records consist of records such as household examinations (<i>Husförhörslängd</i>) from Sweden (also known as clerical surveys), and communion books (<i>rippikirja</i>) in Finland. In both of these cases, these records were created by the state church, and were taken at periodic frequencies.<br><br>Information recorded in census and census-like records varied according to year, location, and purpose of record. For example, earlier records typically contain less information than more recent ones, and records created by a church also recorded information pertaining to religious life. However, in general these records include: names of household members, family relationship, age, and birth information.