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1940 census results will be released 4/2/12

 
 
chai2
 
Reply Fri 30 Mar, 2012 05:48 pm
I can't wait!

http://www.archives.gov/research/census/1940/
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Type: Discussion • Score: 3 • Views: 1,376 • Replies: 10
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roger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Mar, 2012 07:42 pm
@chai2,
Me neither. Bets on whether we've got more or fewer people now?
0 Replies
 
Sturgis
 
  1  
Reply Mon 2 Apr, 2012 07:12 am
@chai2,


Your wait will be over shortly. Of course getting through to the site might prove a challenge if everybody rushes it at the same time.

In related news, http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/04/02/21-million-still-alive-from-140-census/

Quote:
21 million still alive from 1940 census

NEW YORK – When the 1940 census records are released Monday, Verla Morris can consider herself a part of living history.

Morris, who is in her 100th year, will get to experience the novelty of seeing her own name and details about her life in the records being released by the U.S. National Archives online after 72 years of confidentiality expires.

"I'd be happy to see it there," she said. "I don't think anything could surprise me, really."

Morris is one of more than 21 million people alive in the U.S. and Puerto Rico who were counted in the 16th federal decennial census, which documents the tumultuous decade of the 1930s transformed by the Great Depression and black migration from the rural South...

Morris, who has been working on her family history since 1969 and has written six books on its branches, said census records were essential for her genealogical work because oftentimes people don't want to give their personal information.

"Lots of times I just have to wait until maybe they die," she said. "Then I'll have all their information."

But census records, which include names, addresses and -- in the case of the 1940 census, income and employment information -- are rich with long-veiled personal details.

Morris, who turns 100 in August and was contacted through the National Centenarian Awareness Project, said she was working as a keypunch operator in Fairfield, Ill., when the 1940 census was taken. "I don't remember them taking my census," said Morris, who lives in Chandler, Ariz.

While a name index will not be immediately available to search, tens of thousands of researchers across the country are expected to go on a monumental genealogical hunt this week through the digitized records for details on 132 million people. Access to the records will be free and open to anyone on the Internet.

Every decade since 1942, the National Archives has made available records from past censuses. Some privacy advocates have opposed releasing such large amounts of personal information about living people.

The American Civil Liberties Union, for instance, has for over 30 years opposed any unrestricted release of census records.

Jay Stanley, a senior policy analyst at the ACLU, said harm could come from combining the rich 1940 census data with other information.

"Computer technology today allows you to take information from different sources and combine it into a very high resolution image of somebody's life," he said. "Each particular piece of information might just be one pixel. But when brought together, they become very intrusive."

A document obtained from the National Archives by The Associated Press through a Freedom of Information Act request shows that, in 2010, the U.S. Census Bureau raised privacy concerns about the disclosure of the 1940 census by the nation's record-keeper.

Census Bureau spokesman Robert Bernstein said in an email that any fears the data could be used to harm anyone living today "such as through identity theft" were alleviated when the archives said no birthdates or Social Security numbers would be in the records. One 1940 census question asked a sample group of over 6 million people whether they had a Social Security number, but did not explicitly ask for the number itself.

Susan Cooper, a spokeswoman for the National Archives, said the agency did not do a privacy impact assessment of the records. She said archives officials did not know of any complaints from the public about the impending release.

Robert Gellman, a privacy and information consultant, said he doubted the records would be of much value to crooks, given how easy it is to obtain personal information on the Internet.

"There's nobody out there complaining about 70-year-old records being used against them," he said.

Morris is also unconcerned about personal information from 1940 being made public.

A self-confessed genealogy addict, she said it was important for people to be able to learn about their ancestors through genealogical research and relies on census records constantly.

"Every family should be interested enough to have a family history," she said.

chai2
 
  1  
Reply Mon 2 Apr, 2012 07:39 am
@Sturgis,
Thanks for the reminder.

I've got one of the links to the website in my favorites, I'll have to go look later.

My parents were the first generation born in the states, in the 1920's.

Maybe I'll be able to find out some more about where my grandparents came from in Poland, etc.

Oh, and my husbands family has been here for generations. and there's a lot of them.
This should be interesting.



0 Replies
 
BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Tue 3 Apr, 2012 10:25 am
@chai2,
Apr. 02, 2012
1940 census goes online; search your family history
Rebecca Trounson | Los Angeles Times/MCT

The federal government unlocked a treasure trove of U.S. history Monday, allowing researchers, genealogists and the public free online access to detailed information from the 1940 census.

Every 10 years, a decennial census becomes public, once a legally required 72-year waiting period has elapsed. But this one is different, officials say, not least because it's the first time the records have been made available online.

"There's a little more excitement this time because it is being released online and it's immediately available to people," said Rebecca Warlow, 1940 census project manager at the National Archives and Records Administration. "Anybody with Internet access can sit with their PC or desktop and search to their heart's content."

About 21 million Americans of the 132.2 million counted in 1940 are still alive, census officials say.

The 1940 census may also be of special interest to many because it was taken as the country was coming out of the Depression, a tumultuous era with resonance these days as the U.S. recovers from another time of economic hardship.

The information being released includes people's names, ages, addresses, marital status and number of children. It also includes occupations and, for a sample of respondents, how much they earned.

The site will not be searchable by names, but those looking for relatives, or themselves, can plug in an address or approximate location to find the right "enumeration district" - the area a census taker covered - to start their search.

Then, armed with the district's number, researchers can locate and browse the scanned images of the logs handwritten by the census workers to find the names and addresses they are seeking. The page images can also be downloaded and shared via social media.

The website is: www.1940census.archives.gov.
BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Apr, 2012 11:04 am
@BumbleBeeBoogie,
What Did A '40s Census-Taker Look Like?
April 5, 2012
by Claire O'Neill - NPR

We've been looking back to 1940 a lot this week. The census from that year has just been opened to the public, online and fully searchable. Life is looking back at 1940, too. Specifically, at an article (and the photos, of course) that appeared in the March 17 issue of that year.

Today, the value of that census is clear, but back in the day, there was some hemming and hawing before it was to take place. The aforementioned Life article explains:

Though the census has been taken every 10 years since 1790, last week it was front-page news. In the Senate, in letters-to-the-editors and letters-to-Congressmen rose a chorus of outraged squawks — led by Republican Senator Charles W. Tobey of New Hampshire — against "bureaucratic snooping" represented by some of the 1940 questions, particularly those about income and mortgages.

In the summer before 1940, it turns out, a crew of census-takers spread across St. Joseph and Marshall counties in Indiana to do a test run of proposed questions for the 1940 census. As Life reads, the purpose was "to see whether any of the questions proposed for the 1940 census were too difficult or too objectionable to answer."

Questions like: How much do you earn? How far did you get in school? Do you have a bathtub or shower?

Is there a mortgage on your home? Mrs. B.K. Ward, mother of two and wife of a mechanic.

Where were you born? Grocery owner Oscar Banfi (center), who, along with his wife, was born in Hungary and had lived in South Bend for 27 years, talks with a "test census" taker, 1939.

Naturally, Life dispatched a photographer as well: Hansel Mieth, born in Germany and known for her images of the 1930s and '40s working class. The photos that accompany the 1940 magazine article are charmingly posed — apparently acceptable practice. You can see more of these in the full gallery on Life's website.

They were posed in part because Life would not have been able to photograph the actual census questioning, which was conducted in strict confidentiality. The magazine would have revisited the census interviewees independently to get explicit permission for photographs — and to pose the hypothetical census questions.

Today, we can see exactly how these people responded by looking at the census data directly. Beyond that, we can infer even more about 1940 from these photos alone: Black-and-white film reigned, posing photos was A-OK, and apparently census-takers wore dapper white suits and carried comically large notebooks. Oh, the good old days.

PHOTOS:
http://www.npr.org/blogs/pictureshow/2012/04/04/149988708/what-did-a-40s-census-taker-look-like
Sturgis
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Apr, 2012 07:25 pm
I just realized when they do something like this in another 70 years, the results will be flawed. I never did fill out the 2010 sheet, or respond to the several slips of paper they shoved under my door.

In truth, I just didn't like the name of the person who left them and said they would be back on such and such a day or that I could call them directly at a certain number.

At one point there was a man out and about doing the door to door thing and I spoke to him about it, he encouraged me to tend to it, I didn't; so, in 2082 the results will be wrong and not reflect the actual population.

It should be noted; however, that on the 1980 form I included a cat, so maybe it balances out.
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Apr, 2012 07:26 pm
@Sturgis,
they probably just asked your neighbors.

I hope it wasn't the noisy one...
0 Replies
 
chai2
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Apr, 2012 07:33 pm
@Sturgis,
Sturgis wrote:

I just realized when they do something like this in another 70 years, the results will be flawed. I never did fill out the 2010 sheet, or respond to the several slips of paper they shoved under my door.

In truth, I just didn't like the name of the person who left them and said they would be back on such and such a day or that I could call them directly at a certain number.

At one point there was a man out and about doing the door to door thing and I spoke to him about it, he encouraged me to tend to it, I didn't; so, in 2082 the results will be wrong and not reflect the actual population.

It should be noted; however, that on the 1980 form I included a cat, so maybe it balances out.



They were talking about this on NPR.

They acknowledge that the info will only be as good as what was told to the census takers back in 1940.

People lied back then too.
chai2
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Apr, 2012 07:34 pm
@chai2,
chai2 wrote:

Sturgis wrote:

I just realized when they do something like this in another 70 years, the results will be flawed. I never did fill out the 2010 sheet, or respond to the several slips of paper they shoved under my door.

In truth, I just didn't like the name of the person who left them and said they would be back on such and such a day or that I could call them directly at a certain number.

At one point there was a man out and about doing the door to door thing and I spoke to him about it, he encouraged me to tend to it, I didn't; so, in 2082 the results will be wrong and not reflect the actual population.

It should be noted; however, that on the 1980 form I included a cat, so maybe it balances out.



They were talking about this on NPR.

They acknowledge that the info will only be as good as what was told to the census takers back in 1940.

People lied back then too. Or did/did not take the census.
0 Replies
 
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Fri 6 Apr, 2012 01:25 pm
@BumbleBeeBoogie,
I was very angry when I found that my street was not on the list, although other streets in my area were. Then I realized that the street did not exist until 1942! Embarrassed
0 Replies
 
 

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