Census Research Report
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Creating a Census Research Report

Have you ever asked for one of these census reports?

One of the frustrating aspects of TMG is its occasional inability to provide reports which are invaluable in continuing research. Censuses are one of the fundamental sources used, especially in American research, and a good census history report should be one of the sample reports provided in TMG. Unfortunately, it can be a difficult report to achieve.

My picture of this report is a spread sheet containing columns with the names of each desired individual (including married names of women) and every possible census year for those people. The column values would contain the census location for each year for each person. This way, any missing census information would be readily obvious; and I could sort the report by surname, or group it by family. Also, printed in landscape mode, the report would be fairly compact and easy to take with me on research trips to the National Archives. Can we create this report? Well, I can't; but I can keep track of a research group's census history with the following report.

First, find a report which allows us to output each Census event for all desired people, whether Principal or Witness.

Creating an Individual Detail Report

There is one very irritating aspect of the Individual Detail Report. If you choose to print an Individual Detail Report, you will get one page per person! In other words, you may use a lot of paper. Send this report to a Word Processor file.

Report Definition Screen

Report Filter

The report filter determines the people covered by this report. There are several common census research groups: all people in a county in a given year; all people of a given surname; a progenitor and descendants over a given time period. This filter is based on the latter group, one of my most common.

Report Options: Tags Tab

Report options that should be checked include Tags, Sources, Memos, and Miscellaneous. Because this report is being sent to a file, an Index can be included, if desired.

Report Options: Miscellaneous Tab

You will print this report with your word processor program. My advice is to search for all page breaks and replace them with carriage returns. You will also want to delete the annoying title headers that appear before each person's information.

This report only touches on a report that might help answer the second question: "I know I've looked at this census before. How can I keep track of what I've searched and what I haven't?" For additional data entry suggestions and research reports, continue to:

Emphasizing the Research in a Census Research Report

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