Problems in Census Records

Do you sometimes have trouble reading census records? Census records are invaluable for genealogy research but sometimes they can be difficult to read, especially we the census taker had bad hand writing.  But we should remember the difficulties met by census takers.  I ran across the following and thought I’d share:

Census takers have a lot of trouble obtaining information – The Texas 1850 Federal Census schedule, Volume 3, written by H. Swaringen, Asst. Marshall, 23 October 1850 contains this note written by the census taker.
“I certify these to be sixty-four pages and a piece of the inhabitants and done as near in accordance with my oath as I could do it. The people was hard to get along with!”

Ever wonder why the census never makes sense??
Ocupayshun, cencus taker:
” I am a cencus taker for the city of Bufflow. our city has groan very fast in recent yeers & now in 1865, it has become a hard & time consuming job to count all the peephill. There are not many that con do this werk, as it is nesessaree to have an ejucation, wich a lot of pursons don not hav. Anuther atribeart needed for this job is gud speling, for meny of the peephill to be counted can hardle speek Inglish, let alon spel there names!”

Submitted by member Mark Reid


One Response

  1. Another reason some people don’t find their family on the census is they need to know how to read or how to know what to click on when they reach the bottom of the page. The census says the person you are searching for may be on one of two pages. The census pages are numbered A and B, check to see which one they have on screen, if not found on Page A, then click on the Subpage B to see if the family are there. DON”T go to the NEXT PAGE after the Page A, as this will not help them. I will be glad to help anyone if they have trouble understanding this, my phone number is in the Research Room on Bulletin Board or ask for it from the Desk Assistant in the Main Lobby. Dorothy Harbin – Volunteer Assistant – Genealogy Research Room

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