United States, Census of Merchant Seamen, 1930 (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.

Contents

Collection Time Period

The U.S. federal census was conducted each decade from 1790 to the present. This information pertains to the census conducted in 1930.

Record Description

Population schedules consist of large sheets with rows and columns. The schedules are arranged by state, county, place, and enumeration district. The districts are not always filed in sequential order. The arrangement of families on a schedule is usually in the order in which the enumerator visited the households.

The following states have registered vessels which are listed in this census:

  • Alabama
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Louisiana
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin

Record Content

1930 United States Census Crews of Vessels.jpg

The 1930 census includes the following genealogical information:

  • Full name
  • Sex
  • Race
  • Age (can be used to calculate an approximate birth year)
  • Marital status (single, married, widowed, or divorced)
  • Able to read and write
  • Naturalized citizen or alien
  • If able to speak English
  • Occupation
  • Whether a military veteran
  • Address of spouse or next of kin 

How to Use the Record

Begin your search by finding your ancestors in the census index. Use the locator information in the index (such as page number) to locate your ancestors in the census. 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.
  • Occupations listed can lead you to employment records.
  • Address of spouse or next of kin can help you locate additional census records about the family.
  • Owner or operator of the vessel and address


Record History

Federal census takers were asked to record information about all those who were in a household on the census day, which was June 1 for the 1930 census. A census taker might have visited a house on a later date, but the information collected was supposed to have been about the people who were in the residence on the census day. The basic census enumeration unit was the county. Each county was divided into enumeration districts, one for each enumerator. The completed forms were then sent to the Census Office of the Commerce Department in Washington, D.C. The 1930 census covers 95 to 97 percent of the population.

Why This Record Was Created

The U.S. federal census has been taken at the beginning of every decade, beginning in 1790, to apportion the number of representatives a state could send to the House of Representatives. In the absence of a national system of vital registration, many vital statistics and personal questions were asked to provide a statistical profile of the nation and its states.

Record Reliability

Federal censuses are usually reliable, depending on the knowledge of the informant and the care taken by the census enumerator. Realize that any family member or even a neighbor may have supplied information to the census taker. Some information may have been incorrect or deliberately falsified.

Related Web Sites

United States Census Online

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Related Wiki Articles

United States Census

Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. Guidelines are available to help you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide. If you would like to get more involved join the WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

It is recommended that you cite the sources of information as you search genealogical records. Citing sources will allow you to avoid duplicate searches later and share your sources with other researchers. A citation with specific details about the source document should allow yourself or others to easily find the source document at a later time. You should cite all sources searched, whether new information is found, to avoid duplicating searches without findings.

A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched in found in the Wiki Article: How to Create Source Citations for FamilySearch Historical Records Collections

Examples of Source Citations for a Record in This Collection

"United States Census, 1930." index and images, FamilySearch (http://www.familysearch.org): accessed 8 April 2011. entry for Joyce Baker, age 24; citing Census Records, FHL microfilm 2,340,225; United States Federal Archives and Records Center, Washington, D.C.

Sources of Information for This Collection

“United States Census, 1930” index, FamilySearch (http://www.familysearch.org); from National Archives. NARA M1932. United States Federal Archives and Records Center, Washington D.C. FHL microfilm. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.


 

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