A couple of week-ends ago, my Mom came to my house for a visit. I thought it would be cool to be able to show her the 1940 census for her family, although she would not be born for a couple of years yet. At the time, Indiana had not been indexed, so I used the One-Step tools on the Ancestry site to find my mother’s maternal grandfather but that’s where my luck ended. When she arrived, we used our detective skills to finally find her family in a near-by county.
Ironically, the announcement came 1 week later that the Indiana index had been completed, which could have made my search much easier. At the same time, it was announced that Kentucky had also been indexed so I did a search for my mother’s paternal grandparents in Kentucky – but no luck.
I thought it would be a pretty simple search! Last name, Smith – which is pretty darn common – but their first names were Oliver and Mintie. How many could there be? Well, apparently, there were NONE.
So today, I had 30 minutes to kill and I decided to see if I could find each of the children of Oliver and Mintie thinking that they probably lived nearby one of them and it worked! They lived next door to their 3rd son. The reason I could not find them was because the names had been indexed as Alian and Misstie.
So I believe I’ve now found all of my direct ancestors that can be found in the 1940 census. I do enjoy reading the employment information and the number of hours each person worked in a week. Because of this, I’ve been doing more research into the WPA as a few of my ancestors listed their employment that way. I’m thinking of creating a spreadsheet of the different occupations of my ancestors through the years – although I believe they are overwhelmingly farmers. But you never know what you’ll find when you begin to look at your information from a different perspective. That just may be on my “to do list” the next time I find a free 30 minutes!