31 March 2012

1940 Census

So, if any of you family tree climbers out there have been paying attention, we are just days away from the release of the long-awaited 1940 census.

For my generation, this means I'll get to see a little more about my grandparents and maybe their parents. I'm lucky because I've had the opportunity to know all of my grandparents in my lifetime. Some better than others, but still. But it's funny, you know, because I seem to get the same stories out of my grandparents every time I ask, tell me about your childhood, your family when you were young.

For me, going back through the 1930 and 1920 census have given me little tidbits to take back to my grandparents. Prompts, if you will. I can ask them about this certain thing I found, do they remember that. It seems to open the floodgates. Then I get new stories. This is one of the things I love most about genealogy.

So for myself, I know right where to go to find my grandparents when the 1940 census pages for Pennsylvania are made available on ancestry.com. Hopefully sooner, rather than later!

The deal is, that Ancestry.com will be seeing these pages they day they are released - April 2nd - for the first time. So, don't expect to be able to log onto Ancestry on Monday and snap! find your ancestors. It just isn't possible. Ancestry is going to have to scan all the pages. They will make them available as they are finished. But we still won't have searching capabilities. But it isn't the end of the world, we'll just have to treat it like the microfilm versions of previous census, before the days of Ancestry.com. We'll have to use Enumeration District maps.

This will make things pretty easy for people with small town families, and help narrow things down for families from large cities.

So, while things will be very busy at work, with the end of semester, and busy at home with all the construction, I'm still planning to keep up on the latest with Ancestry's 1940 census offerings.

Stay tuned, and feel free to ask me questions! I love to help fellow genealogists!

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