Tune in Wednesday, April 11 at 10 AM for All Sides with Ann Fisher on WOSU 89.7 NPR News. Angela O’Neal, OHS Director of Collections, will be one of the panelists discussing the topic, “Finding Your Family’s Roots/1940 Census Release.”
Data gathered from each U.S. Census is released to the public 72 years after the Census was taken. The 1940 Census information was opened for research by the National Archives and Records Administration on Monday, April 2, 2012. It is available through the National Archives website and Ancestry.com.
The 1940 Census recorded for the first time:
Names of the informants who provided the information to the census enumerators.
Highest school grades completed.
Places of residence in 1935.
There were 132,164,569 million people counted in the 1940 Census. Now that the records have been released, it will take an estimated 6-8 months for the data to be fully indexed and searchable by individual names. Currently the best way to find people in the Census is to match your ancestors address to the enumeration district in which they were counted. The National Archives has tips and research tools to help you.
If finding your family in the most recent Census is not enough fun, you can Uncle Sam Yourself and put your face (or your baby’s face, or your pet’s face) on the 1940 U.S. Census poster that you see above. Good luck with your searching!