Rhode Island, State Census, 1935 (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page
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Access the records: Rhode Island Census, 1935 .
Collection Time Period
The census was taken in January-March 1936 but was a list of the State’s inhabitants as of 1935.
Census data was recorded on punch cards which remain in good condition.
Key genealogical facts found in the Rhode Island census are:
- Name of individuals living at the address in 1935
- Date of birth
- Country of birth
- Naturalization status
- Usual and present occupation and employment status with name of employer
- If head of family, number in family
- Marital status
- If at school, name of school and grade
- Any physical disabilities the individual has or if the individual has ever had measles, scarlet fever, diphtheria, or the Schick Test
How to Use This Record
Begin your search by finding your ancestors in the census index. Use the locator information in the index (such as page number or family number) to locate your ancestors in the census. Some on-line indexes, such as indexes to FamilySearch Historical Records, will take you directly to an image. Compare the information in the census to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to compare the information of more than one family or person to make this determination. Be aware that as with any index, transcription errors may occur.
When you have located your ancestor in the census, carefully evaluate each piece of information about them. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. For example:
- Use the age listed to determine an approximate birth date. This date along with the place of birth can help you find a birth record. Birth records often list biographical and marital details about the parents and close relatives other than the immediate family.
- Birth places can tell you former residences and can help to establish a migration pattern for the family.
- Use the race information to find records related to that ethnicity such as records of the Freedman’s Bureau or Indian censuses.
- Use the naturalization information to find their naturalization papers in the county court records. It can also help you locate immigration records such as a passenger list which would usually be kept records at the port of entry into the United States.
- If they are subject to military service they may have military files in the State or National Archives.
- Occupations listed can lead you to employment records or other types of records such as school records; children’s occupations are often listed as “at school.”
- It is often helpful to extract the information on all families with the same surname in the same general area. If the surname is uncommon, it is likely that those living in the same area were related.
- Be sure to extract all families before you look at other records. The relationships given will help you to organize family groups. The family groupings will help you identify related families when you discover additional information in other records.
Some other helpful tips to keep in mind are:
- Married family members may have lived nearby but in a separate household so you may want to search an entire town, neighboring towns, or even a county.
- You may be able to identify an earlier generation if elderly parents were living with or close by a married child.
- You may be able to identify a younger generation if a young married couple still lived with one of their sets of parents.
- Additional searches may be needed to locate all members of a particular family in the census.
- The census may identify persons for whom other records do not exist.
For a summary of this information see the wiki article: United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records)
Rhode Island began taking its own state census every ten years in 1865 and continued through 1935; however, the 1895 census is missing. The 1935 census was recorded by enumerators directly onto punch cards which were then arranged alphabetically by county, then by township (not by town), and then by surname and given name. Includes most individuals within the counties enumerated.
Why This Record Was Created
The state census was taken in order to enumerate the population for representation purposes.
Censuses are usually reliable, depending on the knowledge of the informant and the care of the census enumerator. Information may have been given to a census taker by any member of the family or by a neighbor.
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Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections
When you copy information from a record, you should also list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.
A suggested format for citing FamilySearch Historical Collections, including how to cite individual archives is found in the following link: How to Cite FamilySearch Collections
Examples of Source Citations for a Record in This Collection:
"Rhode Island, State Census, 1935." index and images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org: accessed 7 April 2011). entry for Claus Jenson. born 4 July 1878; citing Census Records, FHL microfilm 683,245; Rhode Island States Archives, Providence, Rhode Island.
Sources of This Collection
- Rhode Island. 1935 state census, population schedule. Rhode Island State Archives, Providence. FHL microfilm, Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.