Using Census Records?


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Using Census Records?

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Muokkaaja: joulukuu 15, 2011, 1:07am

When using census records how do you know if you found the right person's?

I think I found family in the 1900 census. But when I look them up in later census they do not show up.

So I went back and think I found my great grandfather in the 1860 records. The person is the right age same city as the 1900 but how can one know for sure?

joulukuu 15, 2011, 3:04am

Try looking at the other names in the same house in the census where you found him; sometimes you can recognize another name among them. It doesn't always work; he might not have been at home that night, or not yet married with children, but sometimes it helps. Your family may not have been in later censuses because they moved to another census district in the ten years between them.

Unless you strike a census record where you get a significant number of cross-bearings, you can't really be sure that it's your man.

joulukuu 15, 2011, 8:46am

Sometimes it takes more than census research to prove or disprove that a certain family is or isn't the correct one. You also sometimes have to rely upon indirect evidence. Don't forget that there are all sorts of reasons that you may not have located them in the intervening years -- transcription errors, spelling and other errors, erroneous information provided by a neighbor or family member who was guessing, omitted areas (yes, it is rare but sometimes happened), etc.

joulukuu 15, 2011, 11:47pm

The 1900 census is good because it gives Month & Year of birth--check out these dates for your family--does it match with your other records for them? What about occupations listed on the census--do those match?

You could also try looking at other records for that family in that place. For example, check city directory records, church records, birth, death or marriage records for other members of the family. How about newspapers in the town/area where they lived--the family might have been mentioned there.

Always start with what you have proven or are fairly confident about (i.e., "I know they had at least 4 children named Eenie, Meenie, Miney & Moe") and work backwards from those facts.

joulukuu 15, 2011, 11:50pm

And if you really get stuck, try posting to a mailing list from that area, and see if others can help you out who know records for that place.
And if you're really, really stuck, why not post here & we can all give it a go!

joulukuu 16, 2011, 8:34pm

Thank you all for the suggestions. I guess you have to have some detective in you, and patience.

tammikuu 11, 2012, 12:21am

You should never go on only 1 census to show your family but at least 2 censuses to try to match up the names, ages, occupations, etc. Try finding one or more censuses for comparison. You can't prove a lot by 1 census as the ages may be wrong and people "lied" a lot about ages.

maaliskuu 17, 2012, 10:26am

I found something by accident. While looking up cousins I think I found one that was in jail. The 1900 record I found lists as Relation for all as Prisoner. There are about 50 names with the same Relation.

I have been checking with people who lived in the area and no why has any memory of a jail or prison in that area. My wife family grew up in that area in the 1930- 1990.

But I guess 30 years and a area can change a lot.

maaliskuu 26, 2012, 5:51pm

I use census and other genealogical data to find information about book authors and artists, especially the ones who are not otherwise documented.

The 1940 Census will be available on in the next week or do (Apr 2).