03 August 2012

Ancestry complete US 1940 census index?

Ancestry announce completion of their index to the 1940 US census. With 18 states completed on August 2nd all 50 states and the territories are now available.

According to the information at http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=2442 " (The census) tallied the population of the country at 131,669,000 for the continental U.S. (this excludes both Hawaii and Alaska) and 150,621,231 for the U.S. and all territories and possessions except the Philippines.

Today's announcement at http://goo.gl/N7RJO is that "Our indexing came up with 134,395,545 people counted. Most reports on the 1940 census give the U.S. population as 132 million and change, so you may be wondering where the extra 2 million people came from. Two words: Puerto Rico. OK, and Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and Panama Canal Zone. They were all included in the 1940 U.S. census and add another 2.1 million or so records to the final count."

I'm wondering about the difference between 150,621,231 and 134,395,545!

Some evaluation studies find the Ancestry indexing is not as accurate as that produced by the group headed by FamilySearch. While one swallow doesn't make a summer I successfully found my only known US relative, in New York, using the Ancestry index with the correct line nicely highlighted on the image of the original.

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