Friday, April 13, 2012

Some Interesting 1940 U.S. Census Entries

Over on Twitter, @FACHWGCRSOB posted yesterday about an ED in Lincoln, Lancaster County, Nebraska that had some interesting notations.  It was in Roll 2253, ED 55-18, pages 31 and 37.

I was curious, so I checked them out:

a)  Here's a snippet from page 31 (Sheet 86-A, the Capitol Hotel):

Line 12 here is for Geo. M. Clark, and says to the left of his name "Sealed report to Washington."

b)  Another snippet from Page 31 (Sheet 86-A, the Capitol Hotel):

Line 18 is for C.A. Mattson, and says to the right of his name "States he was enumerated at his home in Hooper, Nebr. He is a teacher at the State University."

Line 19 is for J.L. Krick, and it says to the right of his name "Enumerated elsewhere."

Lines 26 and 27 also had persons "Enumerated elsewhere."

c)  A snippet from Page 37 (Sheet 89-A, the Hotel Grand):

Lines 13 and 14 are for J.P. Miller and his unnamed wife, and to the left of the names it says "Signed Report Sent."

I was curious about what the enumerator's instructions say about hotel residents, so I checked the 1940 Census Instructions for Enumerators (pages 22-24):

Persons Living in Hotels

341. Before 1 p. m. on April 8 call at every hotel in your district, leave the Hotel List (Form P-8) with the manager, together with a sufficient supply of Individual Census Forms (Form P-7) and return envelopes (Form 0-131) for each guest or resident employee. Note that this special procedure does not apply to apartment hotels or to sections of transient hotels which are entirely devoted to apartment rather than to transient use (see par. 426). Space is provided for the supplementary questions on every Individual Census Form, and the supplementary information is to be obtained from every person in the hotel.

342. Request the manager to list on the Hotel List all persons who spend the night of April 8 in his hotel, and any permanent guests whose usual place of residence is in the hotel, even though temporarily absent on the night of April 8. The manager is also to indicate on the Hotel List whether these persons are permanent or transient guests or employees. Request him to see that in the course of the evening each person receives an Individual Census Form and a return envelope.

343. On April 9 return to the hotel during the course of the day to collect the Individual Census Forms that have been left at the hotel desk for you. Examine each Individual Census Form and put aside all forms that have been incompletely or inaccurately filled out. On the evening of April 9, return to the hotel and interview personally, as far as possible, individuals whose names appear on the Hotel List for whom you have not obtained an Individual Census Form and those whose Individual Census Forms you have set aside as incomplete. Enter on the Hotel List, opposite the name of each person, the date on which the Individual Census Form is obtained.

344. Make as many return visits as necessary to obtain an Individual Census Form for each person. For permanent guests who are temporarily absent during the entire period of the canvass, follow the same procedure as that indicated for "Absent Households." (See par. 372.) 

345. If there are so many hotels in your district that it is impossible for you to enumerate all of them alone, notify your Supervisor sufficiently in advance in order that he may provide assistance for you.

346. After you have obtained all the Individual Census Forms from any hotel, you will separate them into two groups: (a) Persons who specify in answer to questions 2, 3, and 4 that they have a usual place of residence elsewhere at which they will be reported; and (b) all others.

347. For each Individual Census Form in the first group check the box "Nonresident" at the bottom of the first page, and hold for later delivery to your Supervisor (see par. 352).

348. Transfer of Information to the Population Schedule.The second pile of the Individual Census Forms will be from persons who are permanent guests of the hotel, or resident employees, or transient guests who will not be reported elsewhere. Transfer the information from these Individual Census Forms to the sheet of the Population schedule that has been reserved for persons enumerated as of the night of April 8th. These sheets will be numbered serially beginning with 81. You will already have entered on them the names of persons enumerated in tourist camps, trailer camps, flophouses, etc., if there are any within your district. Leave no line vacant, but following the name of the last person that you have entered on this separate sheet make the notation, "The following persons were enumerated in the ______ hotel, block ______ ," or "The following persons were enumerated in the _____ _ or "The following persons were enumerated in the _____ _ hotel in ______ which is unincorporated," before beginning the transfer of the information from the Individual Census Forms to the Population schedule.

349. Transfer the supplementary information into the space provided at the bottom of the Population schedule only for those persons whose names fall on the line numbers requiring it (par. 599), and disregard the supplementary responses on the Individual Census Forms for all other persons.

350. Do not assign a household visitation number to hotels nor to persons enumerated in hotels. In transferring information from an Individual Census Form to the Population schedule enter the letter "T" in col. 3 for the first person in each hotel and leave col. 3 blank for all others.

351. After transferring the information from the Individual Census Form, enter in the space provided at the bottom of the first page of the form, the sheet and line number of the Population schedule to which the information was transferred.

352. The two groups of Individual Census Forms, together with the Hotel Lists, are to be turned in to your Supervisor in your portfolio, along with the other materials, at the completion of the enumeration of your district.

That defined the enumeration process, but didn't really address the terms seen in the Lincoln, Nebraska census pages.  Page 28 provides instructions for Individual census forms, which contained a reference to a sealed envelope:

364. Individual Census Form.-Use the Individual Census Form to obtain information concerning members of households, including boarders and lodgers, who are absent at the time of your visit, and for whom the required details cannot be supplied by others; and to obtain information concerning persons Jiving or staying in hotels. (See par. 341.) 

365. Note that the Individual Census Form contains both the Population schedule inquiries and the supplementary questions. If you are sure that the individual's name, when entered on the Population schedule, will not fall on a line requiring the answers to the supplementary questions, indicate that the  individual is not to answer these questions by drawing a line through questions 29 to 43 on the Individual Census Form. 

366. Before leaving the form you must make the entries called for on the first page of the form and make. the proper entry in the Record Book.

367. Leave an envelope addressed "Census Enumerator" (Form C-131) wherever you leave an Individual Census Form. The form is to be filled out by the lodger or other person for whom it is intended, in accordance with the instructions printed on it, enclosed in the envelope provided, and sealed, and is to be called for by you later .

368. Do not fail to make a return call for every Individual Census Form which you ha,e left at any place in your district. It may be necessary for you to make several return calls for some of the forms or to call in the evening. You must obtain these forms, however, or get the necessary information from the person direct, or from  Lodging house keepers, neighbors, or other persons, as the enumeration of your district will not be complete unless you have obtained information for every person residing there.

369. Transfer the entries obtained on the Individual Census Form to the Population schedule (and to the space for the supplementary question responses if required) unless the person indicates in answer to questions 2 to 4 of the Individual Census Form that his usual place of residence is elsewhere and that there is some person at his usual place of residence who will report the required information for him. In the latter case check the box "Nonresident" at the bottom of the first page of the Individual Census Form.

370. In transferring the information forom the individual forms to the schedules, note that the numbers in parentheses after the spaces provided for the answers on the Individual Census Form refer to the corresponding columns on the population schedule. Note also that the symbol to be entered on the schedule is in some cases shown in parentheses immediately after the check-box on the Individual Census Form. These symbols are shown on the form in order to assist you in transferring the information to the Population schedule. If you have any difficulty in transferring the required information from the individual forms to the schedules, consult your Squad Leader or Supervisor for further instructions.

371. Save all Individual Census Forms filled out in the course of the enumeration of your district, including those for nonresidents, and turn them in with other completed work at the close of the enumeration.

There is much more in these Enumerator Instructions about HOW and WHY they did the enumeration as they did.

Did the enumerators do these hotels in Lincoln, Nebraska correctly?  I don't know - I don't have enough knowledge of the instructions yet.

My next question is even more important - how should those lines on the Lincoln, Nebraska census pages be indexed?  Should the name of the person be indexed?  What about the unnamed wife?  Should the notes on the lines be entered?

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Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

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