JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen re: Another feat from Steve Morse - UK Census from 1851 to 1901 #general

Celia Male <celiamale@...>

Nachum Tuchman has highlighted one of the major
problems of the UK censuses - the often hilarious
mistranscriptions. Those of us who trawl through the
censuses to look for hidden treasures, are well aware
of these failings. The first point to remember is that
the indexing of the 1901 census by the National

is *not the same* as that by the well-known paying
genealogy site which lists all the transcribed England
and Wales censuses, 1851-1901, which are the basis of
Steve Morse's valiant effort to provide us with a
single simplified search engine.

Alas things are not that simple - many names differ
from census to census; either the spelling has been
changed or they are mistranscribed y-o-y.

For example in Steve Orlen's recent query about Israel
WOLIN's wedding certificate; those of us who looked at
it on Viewmate, will have seen the name Betsy ESSERLES
- you can deduce Betsy was nee ISERLISSE or ISSERLES
from the National Archives 1901 census as she had two
daughters living with her [step-daughters of WOLIN]
who are indexed as:

Annie ISERLISSE 21 born in Russia - Teacher
Rose ISERLISSE 13 born in Russia
and Betsy is Betey;

but you would spend a lifetime looking for them in the
index of the "Steve Morse" 1901 census as they are
indexed under JAULISSE! Not only that, but poor Annie
is a veritable Methuselah at 321 yrs old and a wife!

If you think that searching by place of birth is
easier, I have found a cluster of Somali-born farmers
living in rural Somerset in the 1800s!

Bona-fide English names on the Steve Morse site are
often transcribed as rather Jewish-sounding names -
for example there are many MINTZ in rural England but
in reality they are MINTY, likewise there is a cluster
Lancashire MAERZ but I have still to fathom out what
they are. They are not to be found on the Official
1901 site. I suspect these errors reflect the
ethnicity and general knowledge [or lack of it] of
the transcribers. The official 1901 census, I have
heard was transcribed in Asia, where central European
names would have sounded even stranger.

So as in diagnostic tests, there are false positives
and false negatives. It is all great fun and will keep
us mentally agile for years to come!

Celia Male [U.K.]

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