Apr 3, 2012

Walk Down Memory Lane

After becoming frustrated trying to access the 1940 Census Images yesterday, I got up at 3:30 AM Pacific Time this morning, in an attempt to beat the East coast rush. It paid off, or at least that's what I tell myself. It's probably more likely that the servers at Archives.com were upgraded to accommodate the enormous amount of interest that this census has generated. So was I pleased with what I found?? You Betcha!

I've only searched a dozen or so Enumeration districts so far. Since I came from a very small town, I've already found most of my immediate family. But what I'm also noticing is how familiar the other local names are, compared to what I've seen on the earlier censuses. Although I am young enough that I won't be included in the next census release, I do recognize many, many names. Several of my older siblings friends are listed. Also listed are many of the people I did business with when I was a young wife and mother. The realtor that sold us our first house shows up. The couple who ran the little grocery where I bought bologna for my mother (and pretzels for me). My banker, and his mother! Several of my co-workers from my first job are listed. How could I have forgotten those names until seeing them on the census? Dozens of the patients I treated as a new Respiratory Therapist at our local hospital are there as well.

I always heard that some people have been missed on censuses, and some have been counted twice. I was never able to find my mother-in-law on the 1930 census, but there she is on the 1940 census, not once, but twice!

After a wonderful day of searching, I will probably put this to rest until the indexes come out. Meanwhile I'll pop on over to FamilySearch.org and help them with the enormous task of indexing every name in the Census. Don't forget, anyone can help. Just follow this link to get started. FamilySearch.org Indexing It's easy, it's fun and it helps others find their family members.

Apr 2, 2012

Servers overworked at 1940 Census Online

I've been eagerly awaiting the release today of the 1940 US Census images. The information to be posted should help me fill in some gaps in the family tree. However, it's almost 8PM and I haven't yet seen a single image from my home state of Massachusetts. I've been trying all day, different browsers, different websites, even resetting my router. No luck! The servers at the National Archives are overwhelmed by the interest in the images. Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org have posted some of the images on their sites, but nothing yet from Massachusetts or New Hampshire, the states I am most interested in.

The day wasn't a total waste though. I spent some time indexing the Delaware images for FamilySearch.org this evening. And this afternoon, I did some long postponed ironing!