Something most of us do not know or tend to forget is that the 1940 census has additional information not asked on other censuses. Approximately two people on every page of the 1940 census gave additional information about themselves and those living in the household. If you are so lucky to find your ancestor with the “Suppl. Quest” added to their entry, you might find as many as 42 extra questions asked of the householder.
Some of the supplementary questions asked were:
Person’s father’s birthplace
Person’s mother’s birthplace
Person’s mother or native tongue
People in the household were also asked if there is a US veteran living there, or if the wife, widow, or if there was a child under 18 years old living there who was the child of a veteran. If the answer was “Yes,” then the person was also asked if the person is a child of a veteran, then is veteran father dead. The enumerator would follow this by marking “W” for World War I; “S” for the Spanish-American War, the Philippine insurrection, or Boxer Rebellion; “SW” for both the Spanish-American War; “R” for peacetime service only; or “Ot” to denote any other war.
The enumerator went on to ask:
Does the person have a federal Social Security number?
Were deductions for federal Old-Age Insurance or railroad retirement made from this person’s wages in 1939?
If so, were the deductions made from all, one-half or more, or less than one-half of the person’s wages or salary?
If so, were deductions made from all, or only one-half or more, or less than one-half of the person’s wages or salary?
What is this person’s usual occupation?
What is this person’s usual industry?
What class of worker is this person?
For women who are or have been married:
Has this person been married more than once?
Age at first marriage
Number of children ever born
For more information on veterans serving in World War I, the Veterans Administration Master Index, 1917-1940, contains an index to veterans who served in World War I. It also shows whether the veteran or the heirs applied for pension or benefits claims of Veterans Administration between 1917 and 1940. The card contains the following:
Name of the name of the veteran and other personal identifying information
Home address at the time of enlistment
Date of birth
Clues to Veterans serving in World War I
The Veterans Administration Master Index, 1917-1940, contains an index to veterans who served in World War I. It also shows whether the veteran or the heirs applied for pension or benefits claims of Veterans Administration between 1917 and 1940. The card contains the following:
Name of the veteran and other personal identifying information
Home address at the time of enlistment
Date of birth
Date of death
Branch of service, service number, date of entry and discharge, claim number
Claim number, insurance number(s)
Cross-reference to the beneficiary of the veteran
First organization the veteran was assigned
This link, https://tinyurl.com/y2vttlxy, should be in a permanent place in your file relating to military service.
The questions asked on each census helped society understand the impact of the Great Depression. Throughout the decades, questions were asked about race, ancestry, education, health, housing, and transportation. The questions were thought to help understand race, the impact of immigration, growth of the Hispanic population, and computer usage. The data collected helped the understanding of the distribution of billions of dollars in federal spending that sustains a growing population.
For more on the questions of census years, please visit the census bureau site at https://tinyurl.com/glkfhpp. Another useful site is the Quick Reference Guide for the U.S. Census for Genealogy at https://tinyurl.com/ybfjfgp2.
Plano SAR Chapter #37 meets April 2 to hear Judge John R. Roach, Jr.
The Plano Sons of the American Revolution Chapter #37 (SAR) will meet Tuesday, April 2, 2019, in the private meeting room of Outback Steak House, 15th Street and Central Expressway. The speaker is John R. Roach, Jr., Judge of the 296th District Court of Collin County. He will speak on the North Texas Regional Veterans Court. Those eating are asked to meet at 6 p.m. The meeting and program begins promptly at 7 p.m. Members’ wives are always invited. For further information, the SAR website is http://www.planosar.org.
The National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution (NSSAR) was founded in 1883 as a patriotic and hereditary society to honor and preserve the memory of Revolutionary War Ancestors and events leading to the founding of the United States of America. They are the lineal descendants of the men and women who fought in and supported the cause that created the United States of America. The SAR members not only descend from the Patriots you have read about, but also the everyday people who believed in and fought for a better way of life.
Brenda Kellow has a bachelor's degree in history, teaches, and lectures on genealogy. Before retiring to publish her family’s histories in 2007, Brenda held certification as a Certified Genealogist and as a Genealogical Instructor. Send reunion announcements, books to review, and genealogy queries to: firstname.lastname@example.org.