Searching the 1940 Census By Location #general

Joel Weintraub

Let me review what is needed to search the recently opened 1940 Census by location.

Steve Morse and I have poured our collective wisdom on this subject into a
Tutorial at:

If you think you already know something about such searches, and there is
always something to learn >from the Tutorial, then jump into our "Unified" tool at: which puts all our data
sets/strategies on one page.

There you can: 1. search by keyword the enumeration district definitions.... good
for rural communities and institutions but not advised for urban areas;
2. convert a 1930 ED # to a 1940 ED # which we advise you use sparingly....since if
you have the 1930 ED number and your family hasn't moved, then use their address
on the 1940 search utiltites; and
3. street indexes to help find ED #s in over 1,180 urban areas in the US and its
territories....that covers close to 82% of the urban population. You will need an
address in large cities, or an intersection, or a location for smaller communities.
Remember this is a block search..... keep adding all the streets on the same
physical block that your family's house is on until you get to a single ED #.
In some cases, like the Manhattan EDs that are 1/2 a block in size, I've
manipulated the data to include all the streets on that block, thus you can't get
down to a single ED # for those.

Because of the traffic we are receiving, neither Steve nor myself will do such
searches for you. We will give you the links to the above utilities. We are,
however, always interested in correcting errors found in the various data sets.

Our search strategies and data sets are incorporated into the NY Public Library's
( phone directory (circa 1940) to ED # project, the
National Archives "official" 1940 site (,
and's 1940 search site
( There is a link to the
utiltities at MyHeritage site as well. It's hard to miss our material.

If you are in the Chicago area later this month, I'll be giving a 2 hour
presentation on the census to the JGS group there.


Joel Weintraub
Dana Point, CA

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