Making the Most of Census Records

Written by Andrew J. Morris

Census records are one ofrepparttar most basic resources used by genealogists. These records include a wealth of information that is obviously useful to researchers, as well as hidden clues that are less obvious but equally useful. Their use must be tempered with a good dose of skepticism however, as they are by their nature full of flaws.

Census records can give us clues that open up our family histories. Many beginners get so enthusiastic with what they find in census records that they go no further -- that is a big mistake. Others take down information that looks helpful, then never give that census another thought. That can be a mistake too, as we will see - it is often useful to go back torepparttar 116174 census records as we uncover further information from other sources.

There are a wide variety of census records, from various countries and many time periods. It is an ancient form of governmental record-keeping. Inrepparttar 116175 Bible it was because ofrepparttar 116176 census that Joseph and Mary had to go to Bethlehem. One ofrepparttar 116177 most famous surviving census records isrepparttar 116178 Domesday Book from England, which dates from 1085 A.D.

In addition to actual census records, we often have recourse to what are termed 'census substitutes' -- records that have some ofrepparttar 116179 characteristics of censuses, and that may be used torepparttar 116180 same end. Early census records are often what are called "head of household" censuses, since onlyrepparttar 116181 head of each family is mentioned by name. Certain tax and property records may serverepparttar 116182 same function as a head-of-household census, if it is widespread enough to encompass a large proportion ofrepparttar 116183 households.

Censuses were primarily designed to allowrepparttar 116184 government to assess taxes, or determine whatrepparttar 116185 pool of available military-age men might be. They also provided a count of citizens, and perhaps a count of eligible voters for a particular area.

Beginning inrepparttar 116186 1800's, various governments were persuaded that repparttar 116187 census could serve certain social ends, in addition to their traditional functions of property evaluation and/or military assessment. To this end, additional information began to be gathered. The birthplace of individuals could help identify migration patterns. Questions could be asked regarding literacy, fluency, race, occupation, religion, relationships, mortality and more. ALL ofrepparttar 116188 additional data these more modern censuses provide can be used byrepparttar 116189 genealogist to better understand their ancestors.

However complete or incompleterepparttar 116190 information a particular census provides,repparttar 116191 genealogist needs to keep in mind that census records tend to be full of errors. One need only consider repparttar 116192 source of information, and how it is collected, to understand how errors are likely to creep in. Some people are suspicious of government in any guise, and purposely misleadrepparttar 116193 census taker. Others simply give erroneous information because they don't know repparttar 116194 correct answers. The census taker is likely to be over-worked, and may get careless. It was not unusual for records to be taken down inrepparttar 116195 field, then transcribed onto clean, official forms at some later date -- and any transcription is subject to errors. No census is complete, there are always people who get missed, either through mistake, or because they don't want to be included. It has also been known to occur that persons, or entire families are listed more than once. Remote communities sometimes expected to gain from inflating their populations! Unscrupulous census takers who were paid according torepparttar 116196 number of entries they made were also motivated to repeat -- or create fictitious -- entries.

Census records are often indexed, some of those indexes provide every name inrepparttar 116197 census records, others onlyrepparttar 116198 head of each household and others in that household with surnames that differ fromrepparttar 116199 head of household. These indexes are wonderful tools. Likerepparttar 116200 census records themselves, they are rife with errors, but if you keep that in mind, and use them judiciously they can save you hours of searching. Sincerepparttar 116201 original records are usually handwritten, it is easy for mis-readings to occur. The motivations ofrepparttar 116202 persons doingrepparttar 116203 transcription must be considered -- if they get paid regardless of how accuraterepparttar 116204 transcription, some people will not make an effort to be accurate. The qualifications ofrepparttar 116205 transcriber can also affect quality. Volunteers are hard to find, and experienced volunteers are even more elusive. Whenrepparttar 116206 original records are faded, or in repparttar 116207 hand of a poor writer, evenrepparttar 116208 best transcriber will make some mistakes.

The novice genealogist will sometimes makerepparttar 116209 grand gaffe of citing a census index as if it were itself a source. An index is a finding aid, it should never be used asrepparttar 116210 source of information. True, an index may indicaterepparttar 116211 place of residence for an individual atrepparttar 116212 time of a particular census, but always go torepparttar 116213 original census record for full details. First, there will be much more information there, and secondly, you avoid perpetuating many ofrepparttar 116214 mistakes inherent inrepparttar 116215 index. As a rule, all indexes should be treated as finding aids, not as sources in and of themselves. The only exception is in those rare cases whenrepparttar 116216 original records have been destroyed, but an index remains.

This sounds like an intolerable situation doesn't it? Census indexes full of errors, based on original records that are themselves full of mistakes! But if you are aware ofrepparttar 116217 potential problems, there is still a wealth of information available from census records. I like to think ofrepparttar 116218 census record itself as a kind of index -- it provides an approximate date of birth, which allows me to findrepparttar 116219 birth or baptism record more easily; it provides an approximate marriage date, so I can findrepparttar 116220 marriage record more easily. If I don't find those records inrepparttar 116221 time and place suggested byrepparttar 116222 census, I suspect error inrepparttar 116223 census, and begin looking for other clues. Byrepparttar 116224 same token, if I don't find someone listed in a census index where I think they should be, I may go directly torepparttar 116225 census itself, assuming there is an error inrepparttar 116226 index.

Seven Games Dogs Just Love To Play

Written by Renée Alexandrea

Have you ever wonder why some dogs seem to be so happy and playful even up to their twilight years?

The answer is not far from reach. If your dog is given an environment that arouses his curiosity yet not over stimulating, chances you’ll have a very a happy, healthy and emotional stable dog.

I’m not talking about throwing some dog toys for him to self-entertain, and thinking that he’ll be so indebted to you. Onrepparttar contrary, you’re doing injustice to his creativity to play.

One ofrepparttar 116173 best ways to nurture dog’s creativity is to create games around things that dogs just naturally love to do.

Here are seven fun activities for you and your dog to enjoy for hours:

Digging and Burying --- A descend from wolves, most domesticated dogs will still haverepparttar 116174 ancient urge to bury bones, food dishes, or your slippers to show how much they value these things. You can create false earth for hygiene purpose—children sand pit or inflatable children pool filled with sand. Tip 1.1—Show your dog his toy and let him watch you bury it. Then say to him ‘Bury’ as you cover it up. Praise him when he digs it up, and then let him have his turn to bury it. Terriers by nature love to dig, but they’re in no means to bury anything.

Wrestling –-- Since young, puppies have this natural ability to wrestle. They do so as to develop strength and agility, to show affection, to be first in line for food, or simply to let off stream. Every dog has his own personality; some enjoy a good ‘rough’ play while others are too shy to rough it out with you. Just respect their decision. Tip 2.1—Start gradually, with gentle pushes and lunges. Say ‘Wrestle!’ Remember to keeprepparttar 116175 game gentle as you don’t want to exciterepparttar 116176 dog too much. Don’t cut offrepparttar 116177 game abruptly.

Rolling over --– When dogs rollover, exposing their tummies, it’s a part of their declaration of love for you. Your dog is saying “I trust you” and would appreciate a tummy rub. Tip 3.1—To encourage your dog to rollover on command, say ‘Roll’ when he does. Give him a good tummy rub. Keep it short for a start, and when he gets quicker on command, then you give a good tummy rub with aromatherapy oil for his extra effort.

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