Tuesday, April 3, 2012

1940 Census

The 1940 census was released yesterday. I guess there was a computer glitch in the delivery or I guess I should say so many interested genealogists that the computers couldn't keep up. Anyway, I stayed away yesterday but thought I'd check this evening. I struck gold right away on

Nebraska, Custer County, Lillian Township. On the first page:

Irene Russell, line 10, a school teacher living with Charles and Margie Estes.
Ben T. Russell, line 17, age 61, renter operator of a farm
Predmore family, Rufus, Bula and kids, line 18; Rufus was the father of dad's first wife. She was grown and gone by 1940.
Anton Hansen and his wife Grace and kids, line 37; neighbors when we lived on the Lakeman place. I have a very faint memory of Anton and his wooden leg. Grace was the enumerator of this part of the census.

But where is dad? If he was renting the Lakeman place in 1940, he should have been listed between the Predmores and Hansens. Hmm. Was he working for someone elsewhere? I don't see him in Lillian, Milburn or Sargent townships. Maybe he was in Wyoming. Maybe he was working as a hired man in another part of the county. Maybe I'll have to wait for the 1940 census index to be completed before I find him.

Others I see:
On page 2 I see Barent and Annie Ottun and four children on lines 65 thru 70.
Page 3, my grandmother, Della Russell and son Glenn Patch who was dad's half-brother, lines 17 and 18
page 4, Earl Patch, another half-brother, line 75

Names like Greenstreet, Lacy, Jezbera, Willhoit bring back memories of all the conversations dad and I had about his past. I see Temp and Hazel Wykoff, neighbors my sister and I visited one time, on horseback. I see Andrew Miller and know he was living on what has been immortalized in our family as The Miller Place. We moved there in 1964 - a great place for a kid to grow up!

If I was better with images I would include them here. Instead, I would suggest anyone interested in seeing the images go to and see if the 1940 census is free. (I have a subscription so I don't know what it looks like if you don't have one.) Another location to check is the National Archives website. Keep in mind there is no index. All around the world, dedicated genealogists are working feverishly to get it indexed as quickly as possible. But it will probably be months before that happens. (If you are looking on the National Archives site, you need to look for Nebraska, Custer, then you need to look for Enumeration district 21-27, Lillian.)

This has been a long and rambley sort of post but it has been fun to travel down the river road again and over the hill to Round Valley and to see the names of loved ones and neighbors and to remember dad.

No comments:

Post a Comment