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1940 Census

99 1940 Census Takers Receiving Their Kits, St. Paul.

The 1940 Census is Now Available!


The Good News:

The 1940 U.S. Census opened to researchers April 2, 2012.


But before you get too excited....

There is no name index and there isn’t likely to be for several months.

 

Getting started:

You can find your family members if you know their enumeration district, so a good starting place is to figure out where they were living. In cities, you’ll need an address or the names of both streets at the nearest intersection to where they lived. In small towns, you’ll only need the name of the town and county, and on farms, you’ll need the county and township.


Searching the Census

Once you have the location information, you can search the 1940 census for free on any computer with internet access through NARA's 1940 Census Search Page. You can also search using Ancestry.com. Ancestry.com requires a subscription, but the MHS Library subscribes and our users can access it for free from any Library computer.


Share Your Finds!

Once you have found records in the census LIKE our Facebook Page to share your 1940 census searching experience.


Useful Tools

  • Our Release of the 1940 Census podcast provides a basic overview of the census and how to research in it.
  • The National Archives (NARA) 1940 Census Records website contains helpful information, such as, enumeration district information, questions asked on the 1940 census, and links to helpful tools.
  • You will need to search by location. You can locate your family’s address in a city directory or phone book. Also, check the reverse portion of the directory (by address) to determine cross streets. The MHS Library has 1940 city directories and phone books to use for many of the state’s cities and towns.
  • There are some useful tools for locating an enumeration district (ED).