Friday, April 20, 2012

Are We There Yet…Are We…Are We…Huh?

Unfortunately the answer to the question above is no (sigh).  But we are making great progress!  What am I talking about?  Why, Indexing the 1940 Census, of course.

Last week a former student from my family history class asked me when we would be able to search the 1940 Census (and no, he did not ask in a whiny little kid voice like in my blog post title).  I, of course, couldn’t give him a definitive answer.  It all depends on when the indexing gets finished.  (Insert shameless 1940 Census Indexing plug here).  I did mention some ways he could search for the people he was looking for in the meantime.  There’s the awesome website (thank you Steve Morse!).  But to use this website we need to have an idea of where our ancestors were in 1940.  So my student could check the 1930 Census (maybe his ancestors still lived at the same address in 1940?), and he could also look at WW2 Draft Registration Cards for the address listed there.  Maybe his ancestors lived at that address in 1940.  Another idea is to look through old photos too.  I lucked out and was able to find my dad with his parents and siblings in the 1940 Census because I have an old photo with the address of their first house on it.

If you’d like to check out my blog post about this find, here’s the link:

I Found Clark Gable's Mechanic in the 1940 Census!

There are probably lots of other useful resources out there to help us find our ancestors in the 1940 Census while we wait for it to be searchable.

Would anyone like to share their success stories and how they were able to find their ancestors in the 1940 Census?  If so, please leave a comment.  If you've already blogged about your successes please leave a link to your blog.

Okay, here comes the Indexing Plug—If you haven’t signed up yet to help us index, please sign up. We need you.  Besides, it’s fun and rewarding too!  And it’s a great way to give back.

Oh, and a big Thank You to all you indexers and arbitrators out there!!  Keep up the great work!  You guys are awesome!

The FamilySearch Blog has an update on our progress as of April 20, 2012.  Here's the link:

1940 Census Indexing Report

If you want to see the state-by-state progress of the 1940 Census Indexing Project, here's a link:

1940 US Census State-by-State Indexing Progress

Thanks for reading!

Copyright © Jana Last 2012


  1. I've enjoyed helping to index. I can't wait for the index to be finished because I have several people who moved after the 1930 census, so I have no way to find them in 1940 YET.

  2. Hi Wendy! Thanks for reading my blog! I enjoy indexing too and I am also looking forward to when we can just type in a name and find the people we are looking for in the 1940 census. Thanks for indexing!




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