Saturday, April 2, 2011

Saturday Night Fun 1940 Census

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1) Know that the 1940 United States Census will be released for public viewing on the National Archives website on Monday, 2 April 2012 (366 days from today!). My understanding is that, when it is first released, that there will be no indexes available - we will have to search them the "old way" - with known addresses, finding enumeration districts from maps and websites, and then go page-by-page to find our folks. Eventually, there will be indexes available, but we don't know how long after the release that will be.

2) Which of your ancestral family members will be in the 1940 census? Consider not just your ancestors, but also their siblings.

3) Where did your ancestral family members live in 1940 on Census Day? Have you found all of the addresses in city directories or telephone books? Please list the ones you know the addresses of, and the ones you need to find addresses for.

Well soon I hope they open up the enumeration districts lists. In the 1930 census they put a list of where each enumeration district in Spokane was, they listed the boundaries and I drew a map of all the enumeration districts, and then made a copy for the library. The day the film arrived in the library I knew which enumeration district my mom and her parents lived and they were the first block enumerated in that district. I was also surprised to recognize most of the people living on that block in 1930, and for the 1940 census they lived in the same house at 4903 N. Crestline. My dad was still alive when the 1930 census came out so I asked him where he was living in 1930, he said at a logging camp in north Idaho, but I found him living with his parents on a farm near Blanchard, Idaho. He lived long enough to see himself in the 1910, 1920 and 1930 census.

My mom Margaret and her parents Charles Rupert and Cleo Kelly lived at 4903 N. Crestline.
Anton and Anna Hansen my other grandparents were still on the farm near Blanchard, Idaho.
I think my dads older brother Ralph was living on a farm near Cashmere, Washington.
Pops older sister Frances should still be on a farm north of Columbus, Montana. Frances had married Fred Woltermann in the 1920s and in the 1930 census they used school districts in the area near Columbus for enumeration districts. I found them in the Woltermann school district in 1930, should be there again in 1940. So this should show 5 of my first cousins also. Pops other sister Carrie had married a Navy Captain, don't have a clue where they were in 1940, but he was stationed out of San Diego during the WWII, but on a ship most of the war.
My dad may be the hard one to find, I know he had moved to Spokane by 1940 and I think he was living in a boarding house near Hillyard in 1940.


  1. Charles,
    First, all the enumeration district definitions for areas under 50,000 in 1940 are already up for 1940 at in the census folder, ED definitions. I know since I transcribed the 28 rolls of film for Steve's search engine. Second, if you have the ED # for 1930, you can find the 1940 ED # with conversion tables on the Morse website. Third, Spokane is one of the cities that we have a full street index to ED # for 1940 right now on the website.

    Also note that NARA is intending to put online the ED definition scans and ED city and county maps this summer..... and then the digitized population schedules on April 2nd, 2012. So the "heavy lifting" to find EDs for 1940 has been done. Of course I'm always interested in more volunteers so I can reduce the present coverage of all cities over 25,000 to all cities over 15,000 (or even less) on our ED finder before the census becomes public.
    Joel Weintraub

  2. Joel I knew Steve Morse was doing the ED finder months ago. And it looks like both my father and grandparents were in the neighboring EDs. Your 1931 street name changes were interesting though. Spokane annexed the city of Hillyard in 1925 and I think all of those NE name changes were to standardize the names of streets from the neighboring town of Hillyard to the street names in Spokane. 1920 and 1910 the census bureau used voting precincts for their EDs and the boundaries are listed in the corresponding city directories.



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