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“What You May Not Have Noticed About the U. S. Federal & State Census Records”

Stephen Ehat
11/14/20

Categories: RR, RT

Talk Abstract:
And get Ready for the Release of the 1950 U.S. Federal Census 17 Months from Now in April 2022! Ancestry and other sources that provide early census images lead to images of census pages that do not specify the date of the enumeration. How can you sometimes figure out the date? What can be the range of dates for undated census returns? The early census images may not specify the exact location of the enumeration, stating no place or stating only generally a county or parish. How can you figure out the precise location of the enumeration? Must a person be alive to be enumerated in a census? Does the person need to be present in the village, town, city, county, parish, or state to appear in the census enumeration for that place? If the names in a census enumeration are listed alphabetically, what does that mean? How can you tell if you are looking at a copy of a census rather than the original? What are all of those stray marks on a census page? Have you used Stephen P. Morse’s tools for census research? Can you figure out what the occupation codes mean? the language and nativity codes? the miscellaneous codes? Why can it possibly be that two households who live in dwellings adjacent to one another on the face of the earth end up enumerated on pages that are five, ten, twenty, or forty pages apart from one another? How can members of a household also appear on pages distant from one another? In large-city census research, how do you use city directories to find people in a census enumeration when neither page-by-page research nor modern-day indexing efforts lead you to your goal? Why is information sometimes wildly inaccurate in a census return? Did census canvassers obtain information from neighbors? A census return is a goldmine of information. It can be used in ways you sometimes cannot now imagine. To use the census productively and to not make mistakes in interpretation, learn some of the hidden clues and historical facts about census taking. You’ll be a better researcher for it and perhaps learn more about your family than you knew previously.

Speaker Bio:
Stephen Kent Ehat, age 68, has performed family history research since 1967 and has extensive experience in American, German, Italian, Irish, South American and Eastern European genealogical research. He and his wife, Jeanine, live in Lindon, Utah. He has served as director of the Lindon Shared-Stakes Family History Center. They have five sons and 21 grandchildren.

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NOTICE: This presentation is part of a set of over 400 presentations on genealogy and family history produced by "UVTAGG: The Utah Valley Technology and Genealogy Group".
For full details and to join, see the website https://uvtagg.org.