Re: "X" by respondents name in the census #general

Susan Steeble

Alyssa Freeman asked about the meaning of an X next to the name of her
relative in the 1940 census. The relative had supposedly died in 1936.

Does the X in the census form have circle around it? If so, it
indicates the person who furnished the information to the census
enumerator. This was the standard instruction for enumerators in the
1940 census. You should see a similar symbol for each household on the

This doesn't answer your question, of course, because how could your
relative have furnished the information if she wasn't there in the
room but had passed away 4 years earlier? It seems to me that either:
1) the information about her death is not accurate, and she died
later; 2) the person who answered the enumerator mentioned the
deceased relative, and the census enumerator misunderstood that she no
longer was living; or 3) the husband had already remarried, to someone
who had the same first name.

Susan Steeble
Baltimore, MD

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