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ANCESTR1
Ancestry, first response

Description

ANCESTR1 provides the respondent's self-reported ancestry or ethnic origin. In all years except 1990 and 2000, respondents could give as many ancestries as they saw fit. ANCESTR1 records the first response, while ANCESTR2 records the second response, if one exists. Additional responses were ignored, with the exception of 17 "three-origin" combination codes retained in the 1980 samples; these are described in section A of the comparability discussion below. Some compound responses such as "Pennsylvania Dutch" or "French Canadian" were treated as a single response. Respondents could give virtually any response, though they were instructed not to give a religion (the census is not allowed to collect information on religion). A few responses were not categorized in the samples and were instead coded "Uncodable," "Deferred Cases," or "Other." These uncategorized responses were usually religions.

If a respondent listed both a broad category and a subset of that category, such as "German-Bavarian," the Census Bureau used only the subset and ignored the broad category.

The IPUMS generally follows the Census Bureau's practice of coding responses alphabetically within geographic regions. Note that some responses, especially within the NORTH AMERICAN (NON-HISPANIC) geographic region, denote people such as "African-American," "French-Canadian," or "American" whose responses indicate origins outside of the geographical region within which coding schemes have placed them. Some similar responses might therefore appear in separate places.

User Caution: The labels associated with each IPUMS ancestry value do not contain all of the possible responses included within each ancestry code. To ensure that they use all codes that are necessary to their research, users are advised to examine the codes and frequencies table and the detailed components of the ancestry values (see Supplemental Code Information below).

Codes and Frequencies




Can't find the category you are looking for? Try the Detailed codes

Comparability

This variable is basically comparable for all years, though there are some minor differences. The general code for each category is almost always compatible across years; the detailed code allows users to isolate differences - additional detail, or variations in grouping - in the categories between years. But there are some complications:

  • The 1980 samples contain 17 "three-origin multiple ancestry categories," representing commonly-reported combinations of 3 ancestries. These codes appear in ANCESTR1 only. (In the 1990-2000 censuses, the ACS and the PRCS, only two responses were coded.) In the codes and frequencies, these three-category responses are listed alphabetically and thus not necessarily in the order that respondents listed them on the census form. Of the 17 codes:
  • Four appear in the IPUMS as details of the American Indian code:
  • American Indian-English-French (920-1)
  • American Indian-English-German (920-2)
  • American Indian-English-Irish (920-3)
  • American Indian-German-Irish (920-4);
  • Three appear as details of the Dutch code:
  • Dutch-French-Irish (021-1)
  • Dutch-German-Irish (021-2)
  • Dutch-Irish-Scotch (021-3);
  • Six appear as details of the English code:
  • English-French-German (022-1)
  • English-French-Irish (022-2)
  • English-German-Irish (022-3)
  • English-German-Swedish (022-4)
  • English-Irish-Scotch (022-5)
  • English-Scotch-Welsh (022-6);
  • Four appear as details of the German code:
  • German-French-Irish (032-5)
  • German-Irish-Italian (032-6)
  • German-Irish-Scotch (032-7)
  • German-Irish-Swedish (032-8).
These categories only contain people who reported all 3 responses. If only two were reported, the first response appears in ANCESTR1, and the second in ANCESTR2, just as in other cases where two ancestries were reported. All persons included in a "three-origin" category in ANCESTR1 are coded 9990 in ANCESTR2; if they gave additional responses beyond the three contained in the "three-origin" code, these additional responses were ignored.

In all other cases for 1980 where 3 or more ancestries were reported, the first response is contained in ANCESTR1, the second in ANCESTR2, and all additional responses are ignored.
  • In general, the IPUMS follows the 1990 sample coding scheme, but there are some areas where the codes were altered to accommodate differences between 1980 and later years. In the codes and frequencies table, when a value occurs only in one particular year, that year is listed in parentheses, following the value. There are two examples of these changes.
  • For values that occur in one year that lack an obvious equivalent in other years: In some cases, these values are coded as a detailed code, assuming that the value would have been coded within a more general category in the other year. For example, the category "Transylvanian" (code 1442) only occurs in 1980. It is coded as a detail of the general code "Romanian" (code 144) which occurs in 1980, 1990, 2000, the ACS and the PRCS. In cases where a value that is not a subset of a more general category is only available in one year, it is given a general code in the appropriate geographic category.
  • For changes in the categorization: In these cases, it is possible to determine how a particular ethnic group was coded in each year. When more categories are available in one year, these codes appear as detailed codes of the more general year. For example, as noted above, the 1980 census recognized 17 "three-origin multiple ancestry categories." These included German-French-Irish (code 0325), German-Irish-Italian (code 0326), German-Irish-Scotch (code 0327), and German-Irish-Swedish (code 0328). Because this three category coding was only used in 1980, each of these four ancestry groups received a detailed code that elaborated the general "German" code of 032.
  • Due to confidentiality constraints in the construction of the 2000 5%, the ACS and the PRCS samples, any category in those samples representing fewer than 10,000 people was combined with another category. For the list of ancestry categories included in the 2000 5%, the ACS and the PRCS samples, see Supplemental Code Information below.

Universe

  • 1980-1990: All persons; not available for Puerto Rico.
  • 2000: All persons.
  • ACS, PRCS: All persons.

Availability

United States
  • 2017: All samples
  • 2016: All samples
  • 2015: All samples
  • 2014: All samples
  • 2013: All samples
  • 2012: All samples
  • 2011: All samples
  • 2010: ACS; ACS 3yr; ACS 5yr
  • 2009: All samples
  • 2008: All samples
  • 2007: All samples
  • 2006: All samples
  • 2005: All samples
  • 2004: All samples
  • 2003: All samples
  • 2002: All samples
  • 2001: All samples
  • 2000: All samples
  • 1990: All samples
  • 1980: All samples
  • 1970: --
  • 1960: --
  • 1950: --
  • 1940: --
  • 1930: --
  • 1920: --
  • 1910: --
  • 1900: --
  • 1880: --
  • 1870: --
  • 1860: --
  • 1850: --
Puerto Rico
  • 2017: All samples
  • 2016: All samples
  • 2015: All samples
  • 2014: All samples
  • 2013: All samples
  • 2012: All samples
  • 2011: All samples
  • 2010: PRCS; PRCS 3yr; PRCS 5yr
  • 2009: All samples
  • 2008: All samples
  • 2007: All samples
  • 2006: All samples
  • 2005: All samples
  • 2000: All samples
  • 1990: --
  • 1980: --
  • 1970: --
  • 1930: --
  • 1920: --
  • 1910: --

Flags

QANCEST1 

Editing Procedure


ANCESTR1 and ANCESTR2 (Ancestry 1 and 2)

ACS Years: 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015

ACS editing procedure:

The Census edits the variables about a person's ancestry (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2) for three main reasons. First, there are times when a person reports a combination of ancestries that is repetitious or overly broad. Second, some ancestries are two words that were separated into two ancestries; the editing procedures recombine these ancestries into one. Third, the Census edits clarify between American Indian, Central American Indian, South American Indian, and Asian Indian. Each specific editing that occurs is detailed below.

The Census creates a flag for when this editing and allocation occurs; however, it is not currently available from IPUMS ACS.

Reducing repetition and overly broad ancestries:

If a person reports two ancestries that are the same, the second ancestry (ANCESTR2) will be replaced with "Not reported." Starting in 2009, this check is performed again after all the changes below have been made.

If a person reports their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) as something other than "American," "white," "US," "States," or "miscellaneous" but does report their second ancestry (ANCESTR2) as one of those broad options, the second ancestry will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) as "white," "US," "States," or "miscellaneous" and their second ancestry (ANCESTR2) as "American," their first ancestry will be replaced with "American" and their second ancestry will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) as "American," "US," "States," or "miscellaneous" and their second ancestry (ANCESTR2) as "American," "US," "States," or "miscellaneous", their second ancestry will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) as "US," "States," or "miscellaneous" while their second ancestry (ANCESTR2) is not "US," "States," or "miscellaneous" or "Not reported," the first ancestry will be replaced with the second ancestry value and the second ancestry will be replaced with "Not reported." x

If a person lists their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) as "white" and their second ancestry (ANCESTR2) as "US," "States," or "miscellaneous", the second ancestry will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) as "Scandinavian" and their second ancestry (ANCESTR2) is a more specific type of Scandinavian (Danish, Finnish, Faeroe Islander, Karelian, Icelandic, Norwegian, Swedish, or Aland Islander), the first ancestry will be replaced with the second ancestry, and the second ancestry will be replaced with "Not reported"

Ancestries that are multiple words

If a person lists "French" as their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) and "Canadian," "Acadian," or "Cajun" as their second ancestry (ANCESTR2), their first ancestry will be replaced with "French Canadian" and their second ancestry will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists "Scotch" as their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) and "Irish" as their second ancestry (ANCESTR2), their first ancestry will be replaced with "Scotch Irish" and their second will be replaced with "Not reported." Up until 2008, this also applied if the first ancestry is "Irish" and the second "Scotch." Starting in 2008, if a person lists "Irish" as their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) and "Scotch" as their second ancestry (ANCESTR2), their first ancestry will be replaced with "Irish Scotch" and their second will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists a combination of "Black" and "German" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), and their race (RACE) is not black and, if multi-racial, black is not one of their races, ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "Black German" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists a combination of "Black" and "Irish" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), and their race (RACE) is not black and, if multi-racial, black is not one of their races, ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "Black Irish" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists a combination of "Black" and "Dutch" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), and their race (RACE) is not black and, if multi-racial, black is not one of their races, ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "Black Dutch" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported." (Note: Prior to 2010, this step editing code included people who reported their race as black. This was corrected in 2010.)

If a person lists a combination of "Black" and "Russian" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), and their race (RACE) is not black and, if multi-racial, black is not one of their races, ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "Black Russian" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists a combination of "Black" and "Thai" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), and their race (RACE) is not black and, if multi-racial, black is not one of their races, ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "Black Thai" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists a combination of "Mexican" and "American" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "Mexican American" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists a combination of "Spanish" and "American" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "Spanish American" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists a combination of "African" and "American" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "African American" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists a combination of "Afro" and "American" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "Afro American" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported."

If a person lists a combination of "Latin" and "American" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "Latin American" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported."

Distinguishing between different meanings American Indian, Central American Indian, South American Indian, and Asian Indian ancestries

If a person reports their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) as "Indian" and they report their race (RACE) as "American Indian" or, if multi-racial, one of their races is "American Indian," their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) will be replaced with "American Indian."

If a person reports their second ancestry (ANCESTR2) as "Indian" and their race (RACE) is American Indian, or if multi-racial, one of their races is American Indian, then their second ancestry code (ANCESTR2) will be replaced with "American Indian."

If a person reports their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) as "Indian" or "American Indian" but their race (RACE) is not American Indian, Asian Indian or, if multi-racial, none of their races is American Indian or Asian Indian, and their birthplace (BPL) is Central America, then their first ancestry code (ANCESTR1) will be replaced with "Central American Indian."

If a person reports their second ancestry (ANCESTR2) as "Indian" or "American Indian" but their race (RACE) is not American Indian, Asian Indian, or, if multi-racial, none of their races is American Indian or Asian Indian, and their birthplace (BPL) is Central America, then their second ancestry code (ANCESTR2) will be replaced with "Central American Indian."

If a person reports their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) as "Indian" or "American Indian" but their race (RACE) is not American Indian or, if multi-racial, none of their races is American Indian, and their birthplace (BPL) is not the U.S., Central America, or South America (except for Guyana, Surinam, or French Guiana) then their first ancestry code (ANCESTR1) will be replaced with "Asian Indian."

If a person reports their second ancestry (ANCESTR2) as "Indian" or "American Indian" but their race (RACE) is not American Indian or, if multi-racial, none of their races is American Indian, and their birthplace (BPL) is not the U.S., Central America, or South America (except for Guyana, Surinam, or French Guiana) then their second ancestry code (ANCESTR2) will be replaced with "Asian Indian."

If a person reports their first ancestry (ANCESTR1) as "Indian" or "American Indian" but their race (RACE) is not American Indian, Asian Indian, or, if multi-racial, none of their races is American Indian or Asian Indian, and their birthplace (BPL) is South America (except for Guyana, Surinam, or French Guiana) then their first ancestry code (ANCESTR1) will be replaced with "South American Indian."

If a person reports their second ancestry (ANCESTR2) as "Indian" or "American Indian" but their race (RACE) is not American Indian, Asian Indian or, if multi-racial, none of their races is American Indian or Asian Indian, and their place of birth (BPL) is South American (except for Guyana, Surinam, or French Guiana) then their second ancestry code (ANCESTR2) will be replaced with "South American Indian."

Starting in 2008, if a person lists a combination of "Mexican" and "Indian" between their two ancestries (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2), ANCESTR1 will be replaced with "Mexican Indian" and ANCESTR2 will be replaced with "Not reported."

Miscellaneous

If either the first or second ancestry (ANCESTR1, ANCESTR2) is missing, it will be replaced with "Not reported."

Internal ACS variable : ANC1, ANC2