Beginning Tuesday, April 2, the individual page images of the populations schedules for the 1940 US Census become available. There will not, however, be person-based indexes available until near the end of the year. [I wrote earlier about how to volunteer to help with indexing. Hope you are doing so.] Without indexes, the next best thing is to use Enumeration Districts (EDs), which will at least get you to the pages of the US Census that contain the people you may be looking for. As Springfield family history and genealogy researchers looking for our family members, this is what we will want to do, next week.
Randy Seaver has reminded us of the best approach. Using the Steve Morse One-Step website, I entered Stone County, Missouri, and found that I will want to look at ED's numbered 105-1 to 105-23. Finding rural locations is a bit easier than finding city locations. Putting Springfield, Greene County, Missouri in the ED-finder comes up ED 39-4 to 39-45. If you know the street address of your family members in 1940, the finder can get you closer. After April 2, it will be interesting to see if these ED numbers are actually linked to the census page, as implied. Each census page has forty names. My friend Randy has also written a good post on: "How Can I Find Out Where My Folks Lived in 1940?" that you might want to read.
Finally, for today, so as not to overload with information, but to enjoy some of the oddities of census taking, read: "Common Mistakes in 1940 U. S. Census Indexing" that have been brought to attention as the process has progressed. It is not easy. Be thankful for all the effort being volunteered to do this work!
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