The first testimony of the statistical activity dates from 1778, when the First Population Census was carried out by the ecclesiastical authorities that included the parochial records of births, marriages and deaths. After 1821, the first concerns were raised about organizing official statistics. José Cecilio del Valle appears as the first intellectual concerned about the statistical structuring in the Central American isthmus, for which he is considered "The Father of Statistics" in Guatemala. He wrote articles such as "The Statistical Platform of Social Enlightenment", published in the newspaper "The Friend of the Fatherland", in which he insisted on the importance of statistics and its field of application. His effort materialized with the promulgation of the law on the formation of statistics in the provinces of Central America on November 15, 1823, recognizing it as the First Statistical Law. On May 19, 1824, a decree ordered the lifting of population censuses. On July 13, 1825, the First National Statistics Commission was formed, which marked the beginning of the collection of information for government management, including the preparation of the first payrolls and commercial and industrial establishments. The Statistics Section was founded in 1879, attached to the Ministry of Public Works, with the status of Central Statistical Office, which was commissioned in 1880 to lift the Second Population Census of the country. In 1886, this Office was elevated to the category of General Directorate of Statistics, carrying out in 1893 and in 1921 the III and IV General Population Censuses respectively. In 1936, the General Directorate of Statistics was incorporated into the Ministry of Finance and in March of the same year the Second Statistical Law was enacted. Two years later, in 1938, the Urban Census of Guatemala City was built. The V Population Census was held in 1940. The Statistics Department is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Economy and Labor in 1944. In 1950, the VI Population Census, the 1st Agricultural Census and the 1st Census of Urban Housing were carried out. In 1958 the Third Statistical Law was issued, which created the National Statistical System. This Law was in force until 1985, when the Organic Law of the National Institute of Statistics was enacted (Decree Law 3-85), making the institution a decentralized and semi-autonomous entity.