Today, 2 April 2012 the 1940 US Census has become available to the public.The actual 72 year hold on the information expired on Sunday 1 April so release was delayed until Monday. Here are some ‘fast facts‘ about the 16th Census.
- 48 States & Territories
- 132 million names
- First census to use statistical sampling
- Also recorded family location in 1935
- Digitization efforts underway by NARA
- 4,643 rolls of 35mm microfilm
- Approximately 3.25 million digital images
- Post-depression and pre-WWII
At the time of the 1940 Census:
On April 7, 1940, just days after the official date for the 1940 Census enumeration, Booker T. Washington became the first African American to appear on a United States Postage Stamp. At the time, the domestic letter rate was just 3-cents per ounce. The World was also at war in 1940, but it would be more than eighteen months before the United States would enter World War II following the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor by the Japanese. By the time this decade drew to a close the war was over, but the entire world learned of unspeakable war crimes that would forever change the world.
Learn more about the history of 1940.
Our US Constitution mandates a count (Census) of all residents be taken every 10 years but the questions asked have varied since the very first enumeration in 1790 when George Washington was the President. There is a 72 year ‘freeze’ on the public’s ability to view the actual census records. The most recent one we can see now is 1930 (as of 25 February 2012) but the 1940 US Census will be available on 2 April 2012.Our Block and Bloom ancestors first appeared on the 1860 US Census (the eighth enumeration) and I’ve expanded to list the 1850 Census. As conditions changed in the country, the set of questions asked was modified.
These bulleted links jump to the list of questions asked in the Census.
- 1850 US Census form (see Census site here for 1850)
- 1860 US Census form (see Census site here for 1860)
- 1870 US Census form (see Census site here for 1870)
- 1880 US Census form (see Census site here for 1880)
- 1890 US Census was destroyed by fire so the questions are moot (see Census site here for 1890)
- 1900 US Census form (see Census site here for 1900)
- 1910 US Census form (see Census site here for 1910)
- 1920 US Census form (see Census site here for 1920)
- 1930 US Census form (see Census site here for 1930)
- 1940 US Census form (see Census site here for 1940)