Monday, July 02, 2007

Exceptional trends observed in US Indian census schedules

DearREADERS,
Things are getting curiouser and curiouser. Just when you think there is a hard and fast rule, someone comes along and breaks it. In the world of genealogy, the study of one’s ancestors, we’re especially glad when this happens.

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THE RULE
There are no US federal census records available post-1930 at this time, because of right to privacy.

The exception:
If your ancestors happen to be Native American, many of the annual post-1930 US Indian census records are searchable at Ancestry.com’s US Indian Census Schedules 1885-1940 collection, available to subscribers only. Some of the schedules are as recent as 1944, but in the description of the source documents found below the search box for this collection, Ancestry explains that after 1940 it was not necessary for the Bureau of Indian Affairs to forward the enumerations to the National Archives, which developed this microfilm group.

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THE RULE
The wife’s maiden name is not specifically listed in US federal census records.


The exception:
The US Indian census returns for 1937 (Washington) & 1940 (Minnesota) clearly show both the married name and maiden name for females. It is not known how many other returns in the 1885-1940 collection have this information on married or widowed females, but it is enough to make Ol’ Myrt wish she had Native American ancestry.


Entry for Mabel A. Fulkerson wife of Gilbert H Fulkerson, showing her maiden name as Williams.

Click
HERE to view the full page entry.

Example: January 1, 1937 enumeration taken by N. O. Nicholson, superintendent in Washington, #529-517 for Mabel A. Fulkerson where her maiden name is listed as Mabel A Williams. Note that her husband Gilbert H. Fulkerson is white and that Mabel is 1/8 degree of blood, so their son Gilbert H. Fulkerson, Jr. is listed as 1/16 DOB. Image 100, 1937 US Indian Census Schedules, Chehalis, Makah, Nisqually, Ozette, Quinaielt, Skokomish and Squaxin Island Reservations, Ancestry.com, viewed 2 July 2007.

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THE RULE
People found in US federal census enumerations are not listed in alphabetical order.


The exception:
In a cursory review of the US Indian census returns for 1937 (Washington) Ol’ Myrt observed that entries are listed alphabetically by nation, then alphabetically by head-of-household surname in family groups. Of course, any name is fully searchable because of Ancestry’s index of this collection. The description provided by Ancestry.com states that “often there is often no discernible order to the listing of families.”

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THE RULE
US federal census enumerations do not list people in a family who are not in residence on census day.

The exception:
When reviewing the enumeration pages for the Quinault (sic) tribe in the state of Washington, there are entries where the indivdual member of a tribe lived in California or Alaska, etc., but was enumerated on the Washington schedule with other members of his immediate family.

Click to view full page with entry in Washington State for Alvin Smith (allotment number 1589) of the Chehalis tribe, showing residence  in Los Angeles, California.
Click
HERE to view the full page.

Example: See image 200 above, with details in Washington State enumeration of Alvin Smith (allotment number 1589) of the Chehalis tribe, showing residence in Los Angeles, California.

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THE RULE
Deaths are reported on Mortality Schedules associated with the 1850, 1860, 1870, and 1880 US censuses and not on the enumeration schedules with everyone else.

The exception: Some individuals who died are listed on the typed 1937 US Indian census, where subsequently, the name is crossed out and a handwritten notation of date of death is inserted.

Example: January 1, 1937 enumeration taken by N. O. Nicholson, superintendent in Washington, crossed-out entry #432-415 for John Dixon, male, 97, [born] 1839, Quinaielt [Quinault] tribe, ¼ degree of blood, wd [Widower], head [of household] , yes - at jurisdiction where enrolled, yes – ward, Al. 19 (allotment, annuity and identification numbers), [handwritten] died March 3, 1937. Image 91, 1937 US Indian Census Schedules, Chehalis, Makah, Nisqually, Ozette, Quinaielt, Skokomish and Squaxin Island Reservations, Ancestry.com, viewed 2 July 2007.

Click to view full page with entry for John DIXON who died 3 March 1937.
Click

HERE to view the full page.

SOURCE INFORMATION
Click to search Ancestry's US Indian Census schedules.
Ancestry.com. U.S. Indian Census Schedules, 1885-1940 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2007. Original data: Indian Census Rolls, 1885-1940; (National Archives Microfilm Publication M595, 692 rolls); Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Record Group 75; National Archives, Washington, D.C.

SUMMARY
While Ol’ Myrt’s brief study of the US Indian census schedules has been limited to five hours time these several interesting trends have emerged. That should encourage genealogists to consider trends, but to be willing to look for exceptions to the rule. After all, we are looking for needles in haystacks, aren’t we?

Happy family tree climbing!
Myrt :)
DearMYRTLE,
Your friend in genealogy.
Myrt@DearMYRTLE.com
www.dearmyrtle.com

(c) 2007 Pat Richley All Rights Reserved.

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