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Is this a censusible idea?


Published on 1 Jul 2010 17:00 : census : 0 comments : 414 views

Much debated about amongst genealogists this week is Statistics Canada's decision to scrap traditional, detailed census forms in favour for shorter forms, causing some controversy within the world of genealogy. Interestingly enough I wonder what affect this will have on future genealogist trying to research their family tree in centuries to come?

We can learn a lot about our ancestors using the current census data available to us. Census records help paint a picture of our ancestors lives, occupation and standard of living. Some Canadians have questioned the necessity to state details such as; the number of rooms in their house and whether they embark in any unpaid work. But if such questions are eliminated from census records will future generations have a true understanding of our history, in the same we understand our ancestors?

The first British census took place in the 7th century, with regular censuses taking place from 1801.

Censuses prior to 1841 were destroyed, but thereafter the data was kept. From the censuses available on the Gene's site I've learnt a wealth of information about my ancestors. It's interesting to know who was the head of household, how everyone within that house were related, occupations of individuals, where they were born and where they were living at the time the census report was carried out. This all really helps develop my understanding of how my ancestors moved around the country. What's more from the 1851 census I'm able to build an accurate picture of my ancestor's age, which wasn't possible prior to this.

The new 2011 British census includes some new questions and I wonder in a 100 years when this information is released what our future generations will learn about us.