The federal government has a mandate to collect and analyze data to satisfy legal requirements and emerging national needs.
There is no one single index to all federal statistics, check Find Data and Statistics from the Government. Individual agencies often publish their own data which can be found by searching their own web sites, the Monthly Catalog or the American Statistics Index.
United States has had a census every ten years since 1790 (decennial census of population and housing).
The only censuses not available online are 1970 and 1980.
Decennial census data are outdated by the time they are published, an ongoing American Community Survey (ACS) provides more accurate demographic profiles on an annual basis.
There are other U.S.censuses besides the population and housing census:
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