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Inferring Grandchild's parentage in 1880 census

Inferring Grandchild's parentage in 1880 census

Posted: 5 Jan 2013 2:39AM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 5 Jan 2013 2:45AM GMT
Surnames: THOMAS
I am researching a family in the 1880 census where 3 grandchildren are listed. They have "relationship to head of household" as grandson or granddaughter. There are 4 adult children of the head of household living there also. I'm not sure which one is the parent of the grandchildren.

However, Ancestry infers the parent's name on the census page, even though that is NOT shown on the census form. Was there some instruction to the census takers that would allow that inference to be made? Was the parent always listed immediately before (his/her) children, or something like that?

See:
http://search.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/sse.dll?db=1880usfedcen&a...

Re: Inferring Grandchild's parentage in 1880 census

Posted: 5 Jan 2013 3:29AM GMT
Classification: Query
Interesting question.

So let's see if there is some hidden order/instructions to the enumerator for this census.
http://usa.ipums.org/usa/voliii/inst1880.shtml

Let's look at the "Names" section of the instructions.... and I don't see anything that gives Ancestry the ability to make their statements.




Re: Inferring Grandchild's parentage in 1880 census

Posted: 5 Jan 2013 3:55AM GMT
Classification: Query
Thanks for that instructive link!

Nothing conclusive, but I did see this instruction:

It is desirable that the children of the family proper should follow in the order of their ages, as will naturally be the case.

In this case, the purported "father" is listed out of order with his siblings, but just before the grandchildren whom Ancestry inferred are his children.

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