Michele Forsten reminds us that "S" on an official document can stand for "single" or "something else."
When I located my maternal grandfather in the 1920 federal census, I was puzzled by the "S" that clearly appeared in the box for his marital status; I had his marriage certificate to prove that he had been married to my grandma for about eight years by then.
Was the "S" simply a mistake? Or was there another reason it had been checked?Forsten was married last summer to a person of the (gasp!) same sex, but her marriage is not recognized by the federal government. That means her marital status will not be recorded in the 2010 census.
Questions with nobody left to answer them, but that "S" still lingers on as a historical record; its significance all too apparent in my own life. I've had to check off "single" on all kinds of official documents, even though I haven't been single for decades. [Link]