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    In every family, someone ends up with “the stuff.” It is the goal of The Family Curator to inspire, enlighten, and encourage other family curators in their efforts to preserve and share their own family treasures.

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    Entries in census (2)

    Tuesday
    Feb242009

    Tech Tuesday: Organizing Data with CensusMate

    Yesterday, I mentioned my quest for Arline's great-grandfather Henry M. Winsor. I could easily find the Union veteran after 1850, but I could not find Henry's home in the years before the 1850 census.

    Then I found CensusMate, a handy census utility by John L. Haynes that stacks data in a grid for easier analysis. Instead of the typical individual census extracts, Mr. Haynes proposes a timeline arrangement for data from pre-1850 censuses. Males are placed on one line, with females listed below using the same age brackets. This allows the researcher to follow a given individual from decade to decade and to see patterns within family groups.


    In addition to free census forms, Mr. Haynes also provides careful examples with explanatory notes. His sample family provides an understandable key for using the forms in your own research.

    I applied Mr. Haynes principles to my study of Henry Winsor using the family of Henry's guardian as my subject. Would Henry fit into this family grouping?

    The example shows that in 1820 (before Henry was born) the Dyer family included 2 boys and 1 girl 0-9, 2 boys and 2 girls 19-15, 2 boys and 1 girl 16-25, 1 male over 45, and 1 female 26-44.

    In 1830, when Henry was 9 years old, but one year before Edward Dyer was appointed his guardian, the Dyer family could account for the children in the 1820 census PLUS 2 boys and 1 girl 10-19, and 1 girl 5-9, as well as older adult children.

    In 1840, the same pattern appears. The Dyer family suddenly includes 1 boy 10-14 and 2 boys 15-19. These children do not appear in the corresponding age brackets for the 1830 census.

    My ancestor, Henry M. was 9 years old in 1830 and does not appear in Edward Dyer's household. Perhaps he was living with a relative or neighbor until the court order of 1831 appointed Dyer as Henry's legal guardian. In 1840, Henry could have been one of the two 15-19 year olds listed in Dyer's household. Where did the other boys come from?

    I wonder if Edward Dyer had the social and financial standing to act as a guardian or foster parents for other children. In 1820 the Dyers had 3 children age 0-9; in 1830 these 3 children should have fallen into the 10-19 age bracket; however, this age group shows a total of 6 children. Again, in 1830 the Dyers had 1 child under 9; in 1840 they had 4 children 10-19. It looks like the Dyers were taking in the children of relatives or others in the community.

    John Haynes CensusMate forms makes such relationships much more clear. Additional forms assist the researcher in determining birth or death years by using the stacked census data and the linear timeline.

    By using CensusMate, I discovered a new avenue of research: the Edward Dyer family. A brief Google search shows numerous hits; the Dyers seem to be a well-established Vermont family. Perhaps further research will lead to information about their children and household, and maybe even my elusive ancestor, Henry M. Winsor. Thank you, Mr. Haynes. CensusMate is a GEM!

    Wednesday
    Jul252007

    Census Success

    It could be a little game -- how much information can I find for free! I went to the Pubic Library and found out that my library card will give access to the heritagequest databases which include all the US Census reports. Unfortunately, the local library is having a problem with the database so I renewed my LA card and accessed it through that account.

    I already found out by searching ancestry.com that there was info available; just didn't want to subscribe quite yet. A few more searches and I found two useful pieces -
    1880 Census - Samuel Chamblin and wife Mercy with children Minny, Maud, Norman
    1910 Census - Roy Paulen and wife Arline with child Lucile

    The next thing will be to chase either vital statistics or try to get names, places for Chamblin/Winsor parents.

    Also tweaked the database b/c the filenames weren't meshing with other entry forms - they all need to share similar field data in order to search and extract the info effectively. Deleted dedicated address fields, then added city, state. This family moved around so much I think those fields will prove to be very useful. Organized letters 1910-1920 in chronological order, although I know there will be more as I keep working with the boxes.