1940 U.S. Census Discoveries

April 8, 2012 at 8:42 am Leave a comment

On April 2, 2012 the 1940 Census was released!  It has been a very exciting time to both Index and also search out the families I research.  I would like to share with you the exciting things I have discovered:

My father in law was born in Memphis, 1923. I could not find his family  on the 1930 census as hard as I have tried. I was determined to find him on the 1940 and he was the first one I looked for. I knew his family lived most of their lives onVance street when locating  to Memphis. I used the tools on the National Archives  page to find an enumeration district (ED). I had no success and was very frustrated.  As I laid in bed that night, it hit me that I had the wrong address. I remembered that my father in law’s mother had moved to Elizabeth Street. So, the next day I used the tools to find the closest ED and went for my search. The exciting thing is that although I was looking for my father in law, I saw many cousins along the way.

Then on the Tennessee, Shelby, Memphis, ED 98-114, page 4 of 22 Census on Ancestry.com, there they were, the Sansone Family – Kate, Tony, Virginia, Fred and Angelo– my father in law when he was 16 years old.  Of course, the first thing I did was show my husband his dad. He was glad to see it, but not being the genealogy addict I am, was not quite as excited as I was. But, I was elated enough for the both of us!  Another mystery was the occupation of one of his brothers. There are two groups of Sansone’s in the Memphis area – vegetables (my husband’s family) and the liquor. But, on this census, Tony works in the wholesale liquor business. Surprising find for me.

I also did a search for a good friend who has been looking for his maternal grandfather. He left when he was young and never heard from much. While I won’t go into specifics on his family, I could not find him on the 1930 census, but located him on the 1940 census. He was not up north as my friend thought, but had moved west, remarried and has since passed away. At least now we can continue to research this missing line on his family.

One other client find was discovering a father on the census for her and learning who he was living with.  Those discoveries on the census are what brings so much excitement to a family and to me as a researcher!

So, now is the time you can go view the census and see what ancestors you can find. Here are some websites to make your searches:

National Archives




Steve Morse ED Locator

We really need YOUR help to Index the 1940 Census. At the present time two states are indexed –Nevada and Delaware. As the indexers get busy, more will be added. Here is where you can sign up to assist in this great endeavor:  Get Started in Indexing.

All information to keep updated on this great work can be found on the 1940 U.S. Census Blog. It also has some great articles from the 1940 Ambassadors.

As part of the1940census.com ambassador program this blog post enters me into a drawing for an iPad”


Entry filed under: 1940 Census, family history, genealogy, Genealogy Prompt.

Feel Good Feeling Indexing the 1940 Census Family History Fair – June 16 in Bartlett, TN

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