Are you into family history? Old family photos? Are you a real “Nancy Drew” sleuth when it comes to solving the mysteries that are hidden in your family closets?
Then you and I are both counting the days to the release of the 1940 U.S. Federal Census.
It is being made public on April 2, 2012.
The United States conducts a nation wide census every 10 years. Most of us just filled out the recent 2010 census – er, two years ago (how time flies!)
The very first U.S. Census was taken after the Revolutionary War in 1790, and it has been taken every 10 years since then. The results of the Census are used to determine such things as Congressional seats and electoral votes.
Genealogists LOVE accessing the census records to track down information on ancestors. Because of privacy laws, the census records are made public after 72 years.
So, for instance – that 2010 Census that you remember filling out? Its results will be made public on April 1, 2082.
This April, the 1940 Census is being made public. Of course, it will take some time for the records to be digitized and made available for public scrutiny at your local library, The National Archives, and such websites such as Ancestry.com.
What was going on in 1940?
My Dad was 9 years old, living in Miami and in Band – here he is, front row, 2nd from the right:
And my Mom started kindergarden in Chicago – she was 5 years old. Here she is, front row, 3rd from right:
Isn’t it strange, how the mysteries of life would bring them together – and 19 years from then – welcome me into the world?
I can not WAIT to access the 1940 Census! Who knows what mysteries may be solved, what clues will be revealed?
Will you be sleuthing through the records, too?
P.S. – readers, please see the additional and CORRECT information about the availability of the 1940 Census from the National Archives – posted in the comments section. I’m happy to be told that if you know your ancestors’ locations, you can find them in the census results as soon as they are released – only the name index will take a while to be digitized by Ancerstry.com, etc…