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Monday, March 19, 2012

New old Census 

When they take the Census, as the United States Federal Government did just two short years ago, the questioners tell you that the data won't be released for seventy-two years. It feels odd to hear that because a little over four months after the questioning is done, they1 release the results of the Census. But those are only the totals. What they mean by the data won't be released for seventy-two years is that the individual personal information won't be released for a little over seven decades.

This bring us to next month's fascinating historical data trove, when the details of the 1940 Census will be released, more than 120,000 enumerators surveyed 132 million people. This will be the first census to have its data released on the internet rather than strictly on paper (massive tomes, tiny print).2

Genealogists and historians are quivering with excitement. Among the important trends they hope to enumerate in more detail, the travails of the brutal economic times and the backgrounds of the more than 100,000 Japanese-Americans warrantlessly imprisoned by our government during World War II.

Read more here in the Albany Times-Union.

1A lot of they's here, the government is the "they" releasing the data. The other "they," the individual Johns and Janes taking the survey, asking the questions, are temporary employees in 21st century.
You know what temps mean! That's right! No benefits.

2Although you won't be able to search the data by name, at least not right away.

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