1920 Census: Instructions to Enumerators
[We include only those portions relevant to the population schedule, from which the entire 1920 PUMS was drawn.]
SUBDIVISIONS OF DISTRICTS
74. Separate enumeration of subdivisions of your district.—Your enumeration district may comprise two or more different parts or subdivisions, such as:
(b) The whole or part of an incorporated city, town, village, or borough, and territory outside such incorporated place.
(c) Two or more wards of a city, town, village, or borough, or parts thereof.
(d) Two or more incorporated cities, towns, villages, or boroughs, or parts thereof.
75. In all such cases you should complete the enumeration of one such subdivision of your district before beginning the enumeration of another. You should begin the entries for each subdivision at the top of a new page of the population schedule A or B side of the sheet, as the case may be), and at the end of the entries of the population for that subdivision you should write, "Here ends the enumeration of —" giving the name of the township, city, borough, village, ward, precinct, or other subdivision, as the case may be, and leave the remainder of the lines on that page blank. Do not leave a page partially blank except at the end of such subdivision.
76. Incorporated cities, towns, villages, or boroughs.—In particular, the law specifically requires that the inhabitants of any incorporated city, town, village, or borough shall be separately enumerated, so as to distinguish them from the inhabitants of the territory not included in such incorporated place. Therefore, if your enumeration district contains the whole or a part of an incorporated city, town, village, or borough, complete the enumeration of such incorporated place before beginning the enumeration of the remainder of your district.
77. In the same way, of two or more incorporated places (cities, villages, etc.) or parts of them are included in your enumeration district, the enumeration of one should be wholly completed before work in another is commenced. 78. Unincorporated places.—The population of an unincorporated place should not be separated or distinguished from that of the township or other division in which it is located.
THE HEADING OF THE SCHEDULE
79. Fill out the spaces at the top of each page above the heavy black line in accordance with the following explanations. Do this on each page before entering any names on that page.
80. Numbering sheets.—Number the sheets of the population schedule in the exact order in which you fill them as you progress with the enumeration. Each sheet must be numbered the same on each side, as sheet No. 1a, 1B, 2A, 2B, etc.
83. Township or other division of county.—Write not only the name or number by which the division of the county is known, but also the name of the class (as township, town, precinct, district, ward, beat, hundred, etc.) to which it belongs. For example: Center township (Center alone is not enough): Washington town; Austin precinct; Precinct 10, etc.
84. In case, however, you are enumerating an incorporated city, town, village, or borough which is not included in or is not a part of any township or other division of a county, write no name. In this space, but make an X mark in it to indicate that the omission of the name is not accidental. (See paragraph 86.)
85.Name of incorporated place.—give both the proper name of the incorporated place and the name of the class by which it is known (as city, town, village, or borough). For example: Mount Pleasant city, Newton borough, etc.
86. Relation of incorporated place to township in which located.—If any incorporated place forms a part of the township in which it is located, the name of the township as well as that of the incorporated place must be entered on the head of the sheet, each in the space indicated for it. If, on the other hand, the incorporated place is independent of the township, precinct, or other division of a county, that fact should be indicated by inserting an X mark in the space for the name of the township or other division of county, as explained in paragraph 84.
87. You can usually determine whether both the name of the township or other civil division of the county and the name of the incorporated place—a village, for example—are to be entered upon the heading of the schedule, by the answer to the following question: Do the inhabitants of this village vote at both village and township elections, or at village elections only? In the former case, they are inhabitants both of the township and of the village, and both names are to be entered. In the latter case they are inhabitants of the village but not of the township, and the name of the township must be omitted. Nonobservance of this distinction will lead to the inclusion, with the population of a township or other subdivision of a county, of inhabitants who do not form a part of it, and for that reason special attention should be given to this instruction.
89. Name of institution.—If you are enumerating the population of an institution, such as a prison, jail, almshouse, or asylum, enter the full name of the institution in the place indicated at the head of the schedule. In case only a portion of the total number of persons enumerated on that sheet of the schedule are in the institution, indicate the line on which the names of the inmates of the institution appear, as "Jefferson County Almshouse, lines 25 to 69, inclusive."
90. Date.—If a page of the schedule is not completely filled at the end of a day’s work, do not leave it blank (see par. 75) but draw a line in the left-hand margin of the schedule against the number of the last person enumerated on that day, and on the following day enter the date in the margin opposite the name of the first person enumerated. For instance, if at the close of January 7 you had enumerated 40 persons on a schedule, draw a heavy line in the left-hand margin against 40, and on the next morning write "Jan. 8" in the margin opposite 41, showing that you began work at that number. The heading of the schedule must show the two dates, viz., the 7th and 8th of January. This will assist you in filling accurately your daily report as to the number of persons enumerated.
PLACE OF ABODE
91. Column 1. Street, avenue, road, etc.—This column applies to cities and all other localities where the streets or roads are known by names or numbers or letters. Write the name of the street, avenue, court, place, alley, or road lengthwise, in the manner shown on the illustrative example.
93. Column 2. House number or farm, etc.—Write the house number if there is one, opposite the name of the first person enumerated in the house. If a house is in the rear of another one fronting on a street and has no number of its own, give it the same number as the front house and add the word "rear."
94. Write "Fm" in this column, opposite the name of the first person enumerated in the house, if the family is living on a farm (as defined in the agricultural instructions), including the families of both farm operators and farm laborers.
95. Write both the house-number and "Fm" if the farm on which the family is living is located on the edge of a city and has a house number. 96. "Fm" is also to be entered for the house of a farm laborer and his family living on a small parcel of land not within the limits of an incorporated place.
98. Column 3. Number of dwelling house in order of visitation.—In this column the first dwelling house you should be numbered as "1," the second as "2," and son on until the enumeration of your district is completed. The number should always be entered opposite the name of the first person enumerated in EACH dwelling house, and should not be repeated for other persons or other families living in the same house. (See illustrative example, line 9, and omission of number at line 13 for second family in the same house.)
99. Dwelling house defined.—A dwelling house, for census purposes, is a place in which, at the time of the census, one or more persons regularly sleep. It need not be a house in the usual sense of the word, but may be a room in a factory, store, or office building, a loft over a stable, a boat, a tent, a freight car, or the like. A building like a tenement or apartment house counts as only one dwelling house, no matter how many persons or families live in it. A building with a partition wall through it and a front door for each of the two parts, however, counts as two dwelling houses. But a two-apartment house with one apartment over the other and a separate front door for each apartment counts as only one dwelling house.
100. Column 4. Number of family in order of visitation.—In this column number the families in your district in the order in which they are enumerated, entering the number opposite the name of the head of EACH family, as shown on the illustrative example. Thus the first family you visit should be numbered as "1," the second "2," and son on, until the enumeration of your district is completed.
101. Family defined.—The word "family," for census purposes, has a somewhat different application from what it has in popular usage. It means a group of persons living together in the same dwelling place. The persons constituting this group may or may not be related by ties of kinship, but if they live together forming one household they should be considered as one family. Thus a servant who sleeps in the house or on the premises should be included with the members of the family for which he or she works. Again, a boarder or lodger should be included with the members of the family with which he lodges, but a persons who boards in one place and lodges or rooms at another should be returned as a member of the family at the place where he lodges or rooms.
102. It should be noted, however, that two or more families may occupy the same dwelling house without living together. If they occupy separate portions of the dwelling house and their housekeeping is entirely separate, they should be returned as separate families.
103. Boarding-house families.—All the occupants and employees of a hotel, boarding house, or lodging house, if that is their usual place of abode, make up, for census, purposes, a single family. But in an apartment or tenement house, there will be as many families as there are separate occupied apartments or tenements, even though use may be made of a common cafe or restaurant.
104. Institutional families.—The officials and in-mates of an institution who live in the institution building or buildings form one family. But any officers or employees who sleep in detached houses or separate dwellings containing no inmates should be returned as separate families.
105. Persons living alone.—The census family may likewise consist of a single person. Thus a clerk in a store who regularly sleeps there is to be returned as a family and the store as his dwelling place.
NAME AND RELATION
106. Column 5. Name of each person enumerated.—Enter the name of every person whose usual place of abode on January 1, 1920, was with the family or in the dwelling place for which the enumeration is being made. In determining who is to be included with the family, follow instructions in paragraphs 101 to 105. (See also paragraphs 47, 48, and 49.)
107. Order of entering names.—Enter the members of each family in the following order, namely: Head first, wife second, then children (whether sons or daughters) in the order of their ages, and lastly, all other person living with the family, whether relatives, boarders, lodgers, or servants.
108. How names are to be written.—Enter first the last name or surname, then the given name in full, and the initial of the middle name, if any. Where the surname is the same as that of the person in the preceding line do not repeat the name, but draw a horizontal line (—) under the name above, as shown in the illustrative example.
109. Column 6. Relationship to head of family.—Designate the head of the family, whether husband or father, widow, or unmarried person of either sex, by the word "head;" for other members of a family write wife, father, mother, son, daughter, grandson, daughter-in-law, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece, boarder, lodger, servant, etc., according to the particular relationship which the person bears to the head of the family.
110. Occupants of an institution or school, living under a common roof, should be designated as officer, inmate, pupil, patient, prisoner, etc.; and in the case of the chief officer his title should be used, as warden, principal, superintendent, etc., instead of the word "head."
113. Column 7. Home owned or rented.—This question is to be answered only opposite the name of the head of each family, and only relates to the home or dwelling in which they are living on the date of the enumeration. If the home is owned, write "O"; if the home is rented, write "R." Make no entries in this column for the other members of the family.
115. Owned homes.—A home is to be classes as owned if it is owned wholly or in part by the head of the family living in the home or by the wife of the head, or by a son, or a daughter, or other relative living in the same house with the head of the family. It is not necessary that full payment for the property should have been made or that the family should be the sole owner.
117. Column 8. If owned, whether free or mortgaged.—This question applies only to those homes classed in column 7 as owned homes and does not apply to rented homes. Write "M" for mortgaged and "F" for owned free. These entries should be made opposite the name of the head of the family.
118. All owned homes which are not fully paid for, or upon which there is any incumbrance in the form either of a mortgage or of a lien upon which judgment has been had in a court, are to be reported as mortgaged.
120. Column 10. Color or race.—Write "W" for white, "B" for black; "Mu" for mulatto; "In" for Indian; "Ch" for Chinese; "Jp" for Japanese; "Fil" for Filipino; "Hin" for Hindu; "Kor" for Korean. for all persons not falling within one of these classes, write "Ot" (for other), and write on the left-hand margin of the schedule the race of the person so indicated.
122. Column 11. Age at last birthday.— This question calls for the age in completed years at last birthday. Remember, however, that the age question, like all other questions on the schedule, relates to January 1, 1920. Thus a person whose exact age on January 1, the census day, is 17 years, 11 months, and 25 days should be returned simply as 17, because that is his age at last birthday prior to January 1, although at the time of your visit he may have completed 18 years.
123. Age in round numbers.—In many cases person will report the age in round numbers, like 30 or 45, or "about 30" or "about 45," when that is not the exact age. Therefore, when an age ending in 0 or 5 is reported, you should ascertain whether it is the exact age. If, however, it is impossible to get the exact age, enter the approximate age rather than return the age as unknown.
124. Ages of children.—Take particular pains to get the exact ages of children. In the case of a child not 5 years old, the age should be given in completed months, expressed as twelfths of a year. Thus the age of a child 3 months old would be entered as 3/12, a child 7 months old as 7.12, a child 1 year and 3 months old a 1 3/12, a child exactly 3 years old as 3 0/12, a child 3 years and 1 month old as 3 1/12, etc. If a child is not yet a month old, enter the age as 0/12. But note again that this question should be answered with reference to January 1. For instance, a child who is just a year old on the 5th of January 1920, should nevertheless be returned as 11.12, because that is its age in completed months on January 1.
126. Persons who were single on January 1 should be so reported, even though they may have married between that date and the day of your visit; and, similarly, persons who become widowed or divorced after January 1 should be returned as married if that was their condition on that date.
127. Column 13. Year of immigration to the United States.—This question applies to all foreign-born [footnote 1 here] persons, male and female, of whatever age. It should be answered, therefore, for every person whose birthplace was in a foreign country (see column 19). Enter the year in which the person came to the United States. If he has been in the United States more than once, give the year of his first arrival.
128. Column 14. Naturalized or alien.—This question applies to all foreign-born [footnote 1 here] persons, male and female, of whatever age. It should be answered, therefore, for every person whose birthplace was in a foreign country, as follows:
"Pa" (for papers), if he, or she, has declared intention to become an American citizen and has taken out "first papers."
"Al" (for alien), if he, or she, has taken no step toward becoming an American citizen.
131. A foreign-born [footnote 1 here] child under 21 years of age is to be reported with the same citizenship (naturalized or alien) as the parents, unless such child has taken out papers of declaration, in which case write "Pa" Note that a person must be at least 18 years of age to take out papers of declaration of intention to become a citizen.
132. Column 15. If naturalized, year of naturalization.—For every person reported in column 14 as "Na" (naturalized), enter in column 15 the year in which final papers of naturalization were issued. In case of persons naturalized through the act of a parent, enter the date of the parent’s naturalization.
133. Column 16. Attended school any time since September 1, 1919.—Write "Yes" for a person who attended school, college, or any educational institution at any time since September 1, 1919, and "No" for any person of school age—5 to 21 years—who has not attended school since that date. For persons under 5 or over 21 write "Yes" if they actually attended school, otherwise leave the column blank.
134. Column 17. Whether able to read—Write "Yes" for a person 10 years of age and over who can read any language, whether English or some other, and "No" for such persons who can not read any language. For persons under 10 years of age, leave the column blank.
136. Column 18. Whether able to write.—Write "Yes" for a person 10 years of age and over who can write any language, whether English or some other, and "No" for such persons who can not write any language. For persons under 10 years of age, leave the column blank.
NATIVITY AND MOTHER TONGUE
138. Column 19. Place of birth of person.—If the person was born in the United States, give the State or Territory in which born. The words "United States" are not sufficiently definite. A person born in what is now West Virginia, North Dakota, South Dakota, or Oklahoma should be so reported, although at the time of his birth the particular region may have had a different name. Do not abbreviate the names of States and Territories.
139. If a person says he was born in Austria, Germany, Russia, or Turkey as they were before the war, enter the name of the Province (State or Region) in which born, as Alsace-Lorraine, Bohemia, Bavaria, German or Russian Poland, Croatia, Galicia, Finland, Slovakland, etc.; or the name of the city or town in which born, as Berlin, Prague, Vienna, etc.
142. If the person was born abroad, but of American parents, write in column 19 both the birthplace and Am. cit.—that is, American citizen. If the person was born at sea, write At sea. Spell out the names of countries, provinces, etc.
144. Column 20. Mother tongue of person.—The question "What is your mother tongue or native language?" is to be asked of all persons who were born in any foreign country. By mother tongue is meant the language of customary speech before coming to the United States. Do not abbreviate the language. This question does not apply to persons born in the United States or any of its outlying territories. [footnote 1 here]
145. Note that the name of the mother tongue must be given even when it is the same as the language of the country in which the person was born. thus is a person reports that he was born in England and that his mother tongue is English, write English; or if he was born in France and his mother tongue is French, write French. It is necessary to distinguish persons from others born in the same country but having a different mother tongue.
147. Column 21. Place of birth of father.—Enter in column 21 the birthplace of the father of the person whose own birthplace was entered in column 19. In designating the birthplace of the father, follow the same instructions as for the person himself. In case, however, a person does not know the State or Territory of birth of his father, but knows that he was born in the United States, write United States rather than "unknown."
148. Column 22. Mother tongue of father.—If the father of the person you are enumerating was born in a foreign country, ask for his mother tongue and enter it in column 22, following the instructions given in reporting the mother tongue of persons. If the father was born in the United States or any of its outlying territories, do not ask his mother tongue.
149. Column 23. Place of birth of mother.—Enter in column 23 the birthplace of the mother of the person whose own birthplace was entered in column 19. In designating the birthplace of the mother, follow the same instructions as for the person himself. In case, however, a person does not know the State or Territory of birth of his mother, but knows that she was born in the United States, write United States rather than "unknown."
150. Column 24. Mother tongue of mother.—If the mother of the person you are enumerating was born in a foreign country, ask for her mother tongue and enter it in column 24, following the instructions given tin reporting the mother tongue of persons. If the mother was born in the United States or any of its outlying territories, do not ask her mother tongue.
ABILITY TO SPEAK ENGLISH
151. Column 25. Whether able to speak English.—Write "Yes," for a person 10 years of age and over who can speak English, and "No" for such person who can not speak English. For persons under 10 years of age, leave the column blank.
152. Column 26. Trade or profession.—An entry should be made in this column for every person enumerated. The entry should be either (1) the occupation pursued—that is, the word or words which most accurately indicate the particular kind of work done by which the person enumerated earns money or a money equivalent, as physician, carpenter, dressmaker, laborer, newsboy; or (2) none (that is, no occupation). The entry none should be made in the case of all persons who follow no gainful occupation.
153. Persons retired or temporarily unemployed.—Care should be taken in making the return for persons who on account of old age, permanent invalidism, or otherwise are no longer following an occupation. Such persons may desire to return the occupations formerly followed, which would be incorrect. If living on their own income, or if they are supported by other persons or institutions, the return should be none. ON the other hand, persons out of employment when visited by the enumerator may state that they have no occupation, when the fact is that they usually have an occupation but merely happen to be idle or unemployed at the time of the visit. In such cases the return should be the occupation followed when the person is employed.
154. Persons having two occupations.—If a person has two occupations, return only the more important one—that is, the one from which he gets the more money. If you can not learn that, return the one at which he spends the more time. For example: Return a man as farmer if he gets more of his income from farming, although he may also follow the occupation of a clergyman or preacher; but return him as a clergyman if he gets more of his income from that occupation.
155. Column 27. Industry.—An entry should be made in this column in all cases where the entry in column 26 has been that of an occupation. But when the entry in column 26 is none, leave column 27 blank. The entry in column 27, when made, should be the name of the industry, or the business, or the place in which this person works, as cotton mill, general farm, dry-goods store, insurance office, bank, etc. (See also illustrations on p. 1384.) Never enter in this column such indefinite terms as "mill," "farm," "store," "Jones and Company," etc.
156. The purpose of columns 26 and 27 is thus to bring out, on the one hand, in column 26, the specific occupation or work performed, if any, by each person enumerated, and on the other, in column 27, the character of the industry or place in which such work is performed.
157. Farm workers.—Return a person in charge of a farm as a farmer, whether he owns it or operates it as a tenant, renter, or cropper; but a person who manages a farm for some one else for wages or a salary should be reported at a farm manager or farm overseer; and a person who works on a farm for some one else, but not as a manager, tenant, or cropper, should be reported as a farm laborer.
158. Women doing housework.—In the case of a woman doing housework in her own home and having no other employment, the entry in column 26 should be none. But a woman working at housework for wages should be returned in column 26 as housekeeper, servant, or cook, or chambermaid, as the case may be; and the entry in column 27 should state the kind of place where she works, as private family, hotel, or boarding house. Or, if a woman, in addition to doing housework in her own home, regularly earns money by some other occupation, whether pursued in her own home or outside, that occupation should be returned in columns 26 and 27. For instance, a woman who regularly takes in washing should be reported as laundress or washerwoman, followed in column 27 by at home.
159. Women doing farm work.—For a woman who works only occasionally, or only a short time each day at outdoor farm or garden work, or in the dairy, or in caring for live stock or poultry, the return should be none; but for a woman who works regularly and most of the time at such work, the return should be farm laborer—home farm; farm laborer—working out; laborer—garden; laborer—dairy farm; laborer—stock farm; or laborer—poultry yard as the case may be. Of course, a woman who herself operates or runs a farm or plantation should be reported as a farmer and not as a "farm laborer."
160. Children on farms.—In the case of children who work regularly for their own parents on a farm, the entry in column 26 should be farm laborer and in column 27 home farm; but for children who work as farm laborers for others, the entry in column 27 should be working out.
161. Children working for parents.—Children who work for their parents at home merely on general household work, on chores, or at odd times on other work, should be reported as having no occupation. those, however, who somewhat regularly assist their parents in the performance of work other than household work or chores should be reported as having an occupation.
162. Keeping boarders.—Keeping boarders or lodgers should be returned as an occupation if the person engaged in it relies upon it as his (or her) principal means of support or principal source of income. In that case the return should be keeper—boarding house or keeper—lodging house. If, however, a family keeps a few boarders or roomers merely as a means of supplementing or eking out the earnings or income obtained from other occupations or from other sources, no one in the family should be returned as a boarding or lodging house keeper.
163. Officers, employees, and inmates of institutions or homes.—For an officer or regular employee of an institution or home, such as an asylum, penitentiary, jail, reform, school, convict camp, State farm worked by convicts, etc., return the occupation followed in the institution. For an inmate of such institution, if regularly employed, return the occupation pursued followed in the institution. For an inmate of such institution, if regularly employed, return the occupation pursued in the institution, whether the employment be at productive labor or at other duties, such as cooking, scrubbing, laundry work, etc.; but if an inmate is not regularly employed—that is, has no specific duties or work to perform—write none in column 26.
165. Engineers.—Distinguish carefully the different kinds of engineers by stating the full descriptive titles, as civil engineer, electrical engineer, locomotive engineer, mechanical engineer, mining engineer, stationary engineer, etc.
166. Workers attending school.—In the case of a person who is at work and also attends a school or college, enter the occupation followed in columns 26 and 27, and indicate the fact of school or college attendance in column 16.
167. Avoid general or indefinite terms.—Give the occupation and industry precisely. For example, return a worker in a coal mine as a miner—coal mine, laborer—coal mine, driver—coal miner etc., as the case may be.
168. The term "laborer" should be avoided if any more precise statement of the occupation can be secured. Employees in factories and mills, for example, usually have some definite designation, as weaver, roller, puddler, etc. where the term "laborer" is used, be careful to state accurately the industry in column 27.
172. Avoid the use of the word "clerk" wherever a more definite occupation can be named. Thus an assistant in a store, who is wholly or principally engaged in selling goods should be called a salesman and not a clerk. A stenographer, typewriter, accountant, bookkeeper, or cashier, etc., should be reported as such, and not as a clerk.
174. You need not give a person’s occupation just as he expresses it. Always find out exactly the kind of work he does and the industry, business, or place in which he works, and so state it. For instance, if a person says that he is "in business," find out what branch of business and kind of work he does or what position he holds.
175. Illustrations of how to return occupations.—The following illustrations, in addition to those given in the illustrative example, will indicate the method of returning some of the common occupations and industries; they will also suggest to you distinctions which you should make in other cases. [figure follows]
176. Column 28. Employer, salary or wage worker, or working on own account.—For one employing persons, other than domestic servants, in transacting his own business, write "Em." For a person who works for wages or salary, write "W." For a gainful worker who is neither an employer nor a salary or wage worker, write "OA" (for own account). For all persons returned as having no occupation, leave the column blank.
177. Employer.—An employer is one who employs helpers, other than domestic servants, in transacting his own business. The term employer does not include the superintendent, agent, manager, or other person employed to manage an establishment or business; and it does not include the foreman of a room, the boss of a gang, or the coal miner who hires his helper. All such should be returned as employees, for, while any one of these may employ persons, none of them does so in transacting his own business.
178. Salary or wage worker.—Any persons who works for a salary or wages and is subject to the control and direction of an employer, is a salary or wage worker, whether he be president of a large corporation or only a day laborer; whether he be paid in money or in kind; and whether he be employed by his own parent or by another.
179. Working on own account.—A person who has a gainful occupation and is neither an employer nor a salary or wage worker, is considered to be working on his own account. Such persons are the independent workers. They neither pay nor receive salaries or regular wages. Examples of this class are: Farmers and the owners of small establishments who do not employ helpers; professional men who work for fees and employ no helpers; and, generally speaking, hucksters, peddlers, newsboys, bootblacks, etc.
FARM SCHEDULE NUMBER
180. Column 29. Number of farm schedule.—If the head or any member of the family operates a farm, enter in this column the number of the agriculture schedule filled out for that farm. Make this entry opposite the name of the member of the family operating the farm.