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1950 Census Transcription Projects

Help transcribe the 1950 Census Name Index!

The National Archives launched the 1950 Census website on April 1, 2022. Now you can help us refine our name index. You can transcribe or submit name updates, which will improve the accuracy of the name index and make the records more searchable.

How to transcribe the 1950 Census

We used optical character recognition (OCR) and machine learning technology to create an initial name index available on the first day of the census opening. We know this is not 100% accurate, and this is where we need your help! We encourage you to try out the 1950 Census website’s built-in transcription tool to help refine the name index. 

Need ideas where to start? Interested in helping with more complicated forms? While you can transcribe any name or any page within the 1950 Census, we’ve identified several specific areas where we’d like your help transcribing:

Self Enumeration Districts

For the 1950 Census, the Census Bureau tested self-enumeration with household forms in several counties and selected Enumeration Districts in Michigan and Ohio. Learn more about self enumeration districts on History Hub.

Self enumeration form

Census schedule from Livingston County, Michigan, ED 47-5, p. 7

Jump in and help transcribe these household forms found in the 1950 Census. Each name on the form is identified by number. Please transcribe the name with the corresponding line number in the transcription tool. 


U.S. Overseas Military and Civilian Personnel

1950 census records include overseas U.S. military and civilian personnel outside the Continental United States at these locations: Alaska, Hawaii, American Samoa, Canton [Kanton] Island, Guam, Johnston Island, Midway Island, Panama Canal Zone, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Wake Island.

Paper census schedules exist and have been digitized for Canton [Kanton], Johnston, Midway, and Wake Islands that include U.S. military personnel and civilian contractors and their dependents. Learn more about these forms on History Hub.

Census Schedule from Midway Island, page 8

Jump in and help transcribe these forms found in the 1950 Census. Please note that not every page of these forms will have a name to transcribe. When you find a name, please initiate the transcription tool to transcribe each name on the page. Names may or may not be identified by a line number on the schedule. It is not necessary to transcribe names of Census officials that appear on multiple census pages. Use your best judgment to transcribe names with line numbers in the order they appear.

 

 

 

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