Description of the U.S. 1930 Census:

The 1930 Census was begun on 2 April 1930, with the exception of Alaska, where the official start date was 1 October 1929.













Questions Asked in the 1930 Census

• Name of street, avenue road, etc.
• House number
• Number of dwellings in order of visitation
• Number of family in order of visitation
• Name of each person whose place of abode was with the family
• Relationship of person enumerated to the head of the family
• Whether home owned or rented
• Value of home if owned; if rented, monthly rental
• Whether family owned a radio set
• Whether family owned a farm
• Sex
• Color or race
• Age at last birthday
• Whether single, married, widowed, or divorced
• Age at first marriage
• Whether attended school or college any time since 1 September 1929
• Whether able to read or write
• Person’s place of birth
• Father’s place of birth
• Mother’s place of birth
• Language spoken in home before immigration
• Year of immigration to United States
• Whether naturalized or alien
• Whether able to speak English
• Trade, profession, or particular kind of work done
• Industry, business, or establishment in which at work
• Whether employer, salary or wage worker, or working on own account
• Whether actually at work the previous work day; if not, line number on unemployment schedule (which no longer exist)
• Whether veteran of U.S. military or naval forces, if yes, which war or expedition
• Number on farm schedule

The date of the enumeration appears on the heading of each page of the census schedule. All responses were to reflect the individual’s status as of 1 April 1930 (or 1 October 1929 for Alaska), even if the status had changed between the official start date and the day of enumeration. Children born between the official start date and the day of enumeration were not to be listed, while individuals alive on the official start date but deceased when the enumerator arrived were to be counted.

Due to boundary modifications in Europe resulting from World War I, some individuals were uncertain about how to identify their national origin. Enumerators were instructed to spell out the name of the city, state, province, or region of respondents who declared that they or their parents had been born in Germany, Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria, Russia, or Turkey. Interpretation of the birthplace varied from one enumerator to another. For the 1930, distinction was made between the Irish Free State and Northern Ireland, and also between Canada-French and Canada-English.

There are no separate Indian population schedules in the 1930 census. Inhabitants of reservations were enumerated in the general population schedules but some minor differences in reporting were used: in place of country of birth for the father, the degree of Indian blood was listed and for the country of birth for the mother the tribe was listed.

Enumerators were instructed not to report servicemen in the family enumerations but to treat them as residents of their duty posts. The 1930 census includes schedules for overseas military and naval forces.

Enumeration district numbering was altered for 52 of the 56 states and territories enumerated. Within each state, each county was assigned a number based on the alphabetical order of the county. That number would then be followed by the specific enumeration numbers for that county: i.e., 1-1, 1-23, 5-2, 10-73. American Samoa, the Canal Zone, Guam, and the Virgin Islands did not use this system.

The microfilm images may have defects that affect legibility. The original schedules have been destroyed.

Taken from 1930 Federal Population Census: Catalog of National Archives Microfilm, National Archives Trust Fund Board (Washington, DC, 2002)


1940 census eagerly awaited

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Be counted! Explore historical U.S. census records in the Texana/Genealogy Department!

1940 census eagerly awaited
Family researchers across the nation are excitedly gearing up for the April 2 release of the 1940 census records. The Abilene Public Library usually sees an uptick in genealogy interest when census records are made public, Test said.
Read more on ReporterNews.com

City Library Eases the Way For Searching 1940 Census
Next month brings the release of records from the 1940 census, and the New York Public Library is launching a digital-search tool to locate New Yorkers in the handwritten forms. The National Archives releases census records once a decade, …
Read more on Wall Street Journal


Exploring US Census Records

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