Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Censuswhacking in America

The recent article from BBC News about "censuswhacking" inspired me to attempt the same, using the 1880 U.S. Census. The challenge is to find a first name or surname which is unique in the transcription (obvious misspellings or mistranscriptions should not count). Examples are given from the British version, some of which are only unique and interesting combinations of first and last names:

Fatty Atkinson, 1881
Peter Pan, 1891
Banana Pointer, 1891
Crusoe Robinson, 1871
Clara Slime, 1901
Nasty Clough, 1861
Ester Bunney, 1871
Sherwood Forest, 1901
My own first attempts found only one person named "Egyptian" in 1880 America—Egyptian M. Ashe of Murphy, Cherokee County, North Carolina. There was a Ghost Wright, and a Chinese miner in Rough and Ready, California, whose name was given only as "Hunger."

The British rules for the game require that a surname occur "in only ONE family in any census." The Horror family of Allegheny, Pensylvania, would qualify. More difficult would be finding a single individual with a unique surname. For example, William Underwater, Elen Crotch, or Carry Dingleberry.


Nice to see our American cousins approving of Censuswhacking! Some great examples there...

See you at the 2006 International Censuswhack Symposium.

best wishes

Paul Etherington




1880 U.S. CENSUS

Contra Costa California
(same household)
Philander MC CARGAR
and Charles H. SLEECE (read it with a 'z' in the place of 'c')

Henderson, Henderson, Kentucky
(19th Century Gym Junkie)
Ziettie GRUBBY Dau S Female W 19 KY Works Out


1880 United States Census

Hank No One. Male 22 Fireman
What. Male 35 Car Man

Census Place Salmon, Siskiyou, California
Family History Library Film 1254083
NA Film Number T9-0083
Page Number 193B

Who. Male 32 Miner

Census Place Marysville, Grant, Oregon
Family History Library Film 1255081
NA Film Number T9-1081
Page Number 5A

Who Hee. Male 39 Cook
Who Sick. Male 35 Clerk

Census Place 6th Ward, San Francisco, San Francisco, California
Family History Library Film 1254074
NA Film Number T9-0074
Page Number 668C

When Chew. Male 25 Miner
Ah Chew. Female 35 At Home

Census Place Nevada City, Nevada, California
Family History Library Film 1254070
NA Film Number T9-0070
Page Number 13B

Where O. Where GRANT. Female 1

Census Place E.D. 83, Screven, Georgia
Family History Library Film 1254164
NA Film Number T9-0164
Page Number 143D

Why. Male 37 Farm Laborer

Census Place Sonoma, Sonoma, California
Family History Library Film 1254084
NA Film Number T9-0084
Page Number 5A

House GREAT. Male 29 Farmer

Census Place Geneva, Jennings, Indiana
Family History Library Film 1254288
NA Film Number T9-0288
Page Number 383C

How. Male 75 Heathen

Census Place including Upper Skeena, Coast of Mainland, New Westminster, British

Family History Library Film 1375920
NA Film Number C-13284
District 187
Sub-district D
Division 9
Page Number 42
Household Number 276

How YUNG. Male 29 Tailor

Census Place 6th Ward, San Francisco, San Francisco, California
Family History Library Film 1254074
NA Film Number T9-0074
Page Number 686D

How Yeu. Male 27 Store Clerk

Census Place Eureka, Eureka, Nevada
Family History Library Film 1254758
NA Film Number T9-0758
Page Number 213A


How weesuks. Female 20

Census Place including West Coast Agency, Western Coast, Vancouver, British Columbia
Family History Library Film 1375921
NA Film Number C-13285
District 191
Sub-district F
Division 5
Page Number 139
Household Number 221

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