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1940 United States Census

National census

Sixteenth Census
of the United States
U.S. Census Bureau Seal
Population Schedule
General information
CountryUnited States
Date takenApril 1, 1940 (1940-04-01)
Total population132,164,569
Percent change 7.3%
Most populous stateNew York
13,479,142
Least populous stateNevada
110,247

The United States Census of 1940, conducted by the Census Bureau, determined the resident population of the United States to be 132,164,569, an increase of 7.3 percent over the 1930 population of 122,775,046 people. The census date of record was April 1, 1940. A number of new questions were asked including where people were 5 years before, highest educational grade achieved, and information about wages. This census introduced sampling techniques; one in 20 people were asked additional questions on the census form. Other innovations included a field test of the census in 1939. This was the first census in which every state (48) had a population greater than 100,000.

1940 United States Census Intro articles: 3

Census questions

The 1940 census collected the following information:[1]

  • address
  • home owned or rented
    • if owned, value
    • if rented, monthly rent
  • whether on a farm
  • name
  • relationship to head of household
  • sex
  • race
  • age
  • marital status
  • school attendance
  • educational attainment
  • birthplace
  • if foreign born, citizenship
  • location of residence five years ago and whether on a farm
  • employment status
  • if at work, whether in private or non-emergency government work, or in public emergency work (WPA, CCC, NYA, etc.)
    • if in private or non-emergency government work, hours worked in week
    • if seeking work or on public emergency work, duration of unemployment
  • occupation, industry and class of worker
  • weeks worked last year
  • wage and salary income last year

In addition, a sample of individuals were asked additional questions covering age at first marriage, fertility, and other topics. Full documentation on the 1940 census, including census forms and a procedural history, is available from the Integrated Public Use Microdata Series.

1940 United States Census Census questions articles: 4

Data availability

1940 US Census poster

Following completion of the census, the original enumeration sheets were microfilmed; after which the original sheets were destroyed.[2]

As required by Title 13 of the U.S. Code, access to personally identifiable information from census records was restricted for 72 years.[3] Non-personally identifiable information Microdata from the 1940 census is freely available through the Integrated Public Use Microdata Series. Also, aggregate data for small areas, together with electronic boundary files, can be downloaded from the National Historical Geographic Information System.

On April 2, 2012[4]—72 years after the census was taken—microfilmed images of the 1940 census enumeration sheets were released to the public by the National Archives and Records Administration.[5][6] The records are indexed only by enumeration district upon initial release; several organizations are compiling indices, in some cases through crowdsourcing.[7]

1940 United States Census Data availability articles: 7

State rankings

Rank State Population as of
1940 Census[8]
Population as of
1930 Census
Change Percent
change
1  New York 13,479,142 12,588,066 891,076 7.1%
2  Pennsylvania 9,900,180 9,631,350 268,830 2.8%
3  Illinois 7,897,241 7,630,654 266,587 3.5%
4  Ohio 6,907,612 6,646,697 260,915 3.9%
5  California 6,907,387 5,677,251 1,230,136 21.7%
6  Texas 6,414,824 5,824,715 590,109 10.1%
7  Michigan 5,256,106 4,842,325 413,781 8.5%
8  Massachusetts 4,316,721 4,249,614 67,107 1.6%
9  New Jersey 4,160,165 4,041,334 118,831 2.9%
10  Missouri 3,784,664 3,629,367 155,297 4.3%
11  North Carolina 3,571,623 3,170,276 401,347 12.7%
12  Indiana 3,427,796 3,238,503 189,293 5.8%
13  Wisconsin 3,137,587 2,939,006 198,581 6.8%
14  Georgia 3,123,723 2,908,506 215,217 7.4%
15  Tennessee 2,915,841 2,616,556 299,285 11.4%
16  Kentucky 2,845,627 2,614,589 231,038 8.8%
17  Alabama 2,832,961 2,646,248 186,713 7.1%
18  Minnesota 2,792,300 2,563,953 228,347 8.9%
19  Virginia 2,677,773 2,421,851 255,922 10.6%
20  Iowa 2,538,268 2,470,939 67,329 2.7%
21  Louisiana 2,363,516 2,101,593 261,923 12.5%
22  Oklahoma 2,336,434 2,396,040 -59,606 -2.5%
23  Mississippi 2,183,796 2,009,821 173,975 8.7%
24  Arkansas 1,949,387 1,854,482 94,905 5.1%
25  West Virginia 1,901,974 1,729,205 172,769 10.0%
26  South Carolina 1,899,804 1,738,765 161,039 9.3%
27  Florida 1,897,414 1,468,211 429,203 29.2%
28  Maryland 1,821,244 1,631,526 189,718 11.6%
29  Kansas 1,801,028 1,880,999 -79,971 -4.3%
30  Washington 1,736,191 1,563,396 172,795 11.1%
31  Connecticut 1,709,242 1,606,903 102,339 6.4%
32  Nebraska 1,315,834 1,377,963 -62,129 -4.5%
33  Colorado 1,123,296 1,035,791 87,505 8.4%
34  Oregon 1,089,684 953,786 135,898 14.2%
35  Maine 847,226 797,423 49,803 6.2%
36  Rhode Island 713,346 687,497 25,849 3.8%
 District of Columbia 663,091 486,869 176,222 36.2%
37  South Dakota 642,961 692,849 -49,888 -7.2%
38  North Dakota 641,935 680,845 -38,910 -5.7%
39  Montana 559,456 537,606 21,850 4.1%
40  Utah 550,310 507,847 42,463 8.4%
41  New Mexico 531,818 423,317 108,501 25.6%
42  Idaho 524,873 445,032 79,841 17.9%
43  Arizona 499,261 435,573 63,688 14.6%
44  New Hampshire 491,524 465,293 26,231 5.6%
 Hawaii 422,770 368,300 54,470 14.8%
45  Vermont 359,231 359,611 -380 -0.1%
46  Delaware 266,505 238,380 28,125 11.8%
47  Wyoming 250,742 225,565 25,177 11.2%
48  Nevada 110,247 91,058 19,189 21.1%
 Alaska 72,524 59,278 13,246 22.3%
 United States 132,165,129 123,202,660 8,962,469 7.3%

City rankings

Rank City State Population[9] Region (2016)[10]
01 New York New York 7,454,995 Northeast
02 Chicago Illinois 3,396,808 Midwest
03 Philadelphia Pennsylvania 1,931,334 Northeast
04 Detroit Michigan 1,623,452 Midwest
05 Los Angeles California 1,504,277 West
06 Cleveland Ohio 878,336 Midwest
07 Baltimore Maryland 859,100 South
08 St. Louis Missouri 816,048 Midwest
09 Boston Massachusetts 770,816 Northeast
10 Pittsburgh Pennsylvania 671,659 Northeast
11 Washington District of Columbia 663,091 South
12 San Francisco California 634,536 West
13 Milwaukee Wisconsin 587,472 Midwest
14 Buffalo New York 575,901 Northeast
15 New Orleans Louisiana 494,537 South
16 Minneapolis Minnesota 492,370 Midwest
17 Cincinnati Ohio 455,610 Midwest
18 Newark New Jersey 429,760 Northeast
19 Kansas City Missouri 399,178 Midwest
20 Indianapolis Indiana 386,972 Midwest
21 Houston Texas 384,514 South
22 Seattle Washington 368,302 West
23 Rochester New York 324,975 Northeast
24 Denver Colorado 322,412 West
25 Louisville Kentucky 319,077 South
26 Columbus Ohio 306,087 Midwest
27 Portland Oregon 305,394 West
28 Atlanta Georgia 302,288 South
29 Oakland California 302,163 West
30 Jersey City New Jersey 301,173 Northeast
31 Dallas Texas 294,734 South
32 Memphis Tennessee 292,942 South
33 Saint Paul Minnesota 287,736 Midwest
34 Toledo Ohio 282,349 Midwest
35 Birmingham Alabama 267,583 South
36 San Antonio Texas 253,854 South
37 Providence Rhode Island 253,504 Northeast
38 Akron Ohio 244,791 Midwest
39 Omaha Nebraska 223,844 Midwest
40 Dayton Ohio 210,718 Midwest
41 Syracuse New York 205,967 Northeast
42 Oklahoma City Oklahoma 204,424 South
43 San Diego California 203,341 West
44 Worcester Massachusetts 193,694 Northeast
45 Richmond Virginia 193,042 South
46 Fort Worth Texas 177,662 South
47 Jacksonville Florida 173,065 South
48 Miami Florida 172,172 South
49 Youngstown Ohio 167,720 Midwest
50 Nashville Tennessee 167,402 South
51 Hartford Connecticut 166,267 Northeast
52 Grand Rapids Michigan 164,292 Midwest
53 Long Beach California 164,271 West
54 New Haven Connecticut 160,605 Northeast
55 Des Moines Iowa 159,819 Midwest
56 Flint Michigan 151,543 Midwest
57 Salt Lake City Utah 149,934 West
58 Springfield Massachusetts 149,554 Northeast
59 Bridgeport Connecticut 147,121 Northeast
60 Norfolk Virginia 144,332 South
61 Yonkers New York 142,598 Northeast
62 Tulsa Oklahoma 142,157 South
63 Scranton Pennsylvania 140,404 Northeast
64 Paterson New Jersey 139,656 Northeast
65 Albany New York 130,577 Northeast
66 Chattanooga Tennessee 128,163 South
67 Trenton New Jersey 124,697 Northeast
68 Spokane Washington 122,001 West
69 Kansas City Kansas 121,458 Midwest
70 Fort Wayne Indiana 118,410 Midwest
71 Camden New Jersey 117,536 Northeast
72 Erie Pennsylvania 116,955 Northeast
73 Fall River Massachusetts 115,428 Northeast
74 Wichita Kansas 114,966 Midwest
75 Wilmington Delaware 112,504 South
76 Gary Indiana 111,719 Midwest
77 Knoxville Tennessee 111,580 South
78 Cambridge Massachusetts 110,879 Northeast
79 Reading Pennsylvania 110,568 Northeast
80 New Bedford Massachusetts 110,341 Northeast
81 Elizabeth New Jersey 109,912 Northeast
82 Tacoma Washington 109,408 West
83 Canton Ohio 108,401 Midwest
84 Tampa Florida 108,391 South
85 Sacramento California 105,958 West
86 Peoria Illinois 105,087 Midwest
87 Somerville Massachusetts 102,177 Northeast
88 Lowell Massachusetts 101,389 Northeast
89 South Bend Indiana 101,268 Midwest
90 Duluth Minnesota 101,065 Midwest
91 Charlotte North Carolina 100,899 South
92 Utica New York 100,518 Northeast
93 Waterbury Connecticut 99,314 Northeast
94 Shreveport Louisiana 98,167 South
95 Lynn Massachusetts 98,123 Northeast
96 Evansville Indiana 97,062 Midwest
97 Allentown Pennsylvania 96,904 Northeast
98 El Paso Texas 96,810 South
99 Savannah Georgia 95,996 South
100 Little Rock Arkansas 88,039 South

Use for Japanese American internment

During World War II, the Census Bureau responded to numerous information requests from US government agencies, including the US Army and the US Secret Service, to facilitate the internment of Japanese Americans. In his report of the operation, U.S. Army Lt. Gen. John L. DeWitt write that "The most important single source of information prior to the evacuation was the 1940 Census of Population."[11][12][13]

1940 United States Census State rankings articles: 3

References

  1. ^ "Library Bibliography Bulletin 88, New York State Census Records, 1790–1925". New York State Library. October 1981. p. 45 (p. 51 of PDF). Retrieved December 15, 2008.
  2. ^ The Ancestry Insider (May 16, 2012). "1940 Census Update for 16 May 2012: Bad News". www.ancestryinsider.blogspot.com. Retrieved May 17, 2012.
  3. ^ "Historical Background". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on June 12, 2009. Retrieved July 2, 2009.
  4. ^ "1940 Census". Archived from the original on January 3, 2007. Retrieved November 26, 2006.
  5. ^ Weinstein, Allen (April 2008). "Access to genealogy data at NARA grows" (PDF). NARA Staff Bulletin. Washington DC: National Archives and Records Administration. Retrieved July 2, 2009.
  6. ^ Weinstein, Allen (Summer 2008). "Finding Out Who You Are: First Stop, National Archives". Prologue magazine, vol. 40, no. 2. Washington DC: National Archives and Records Administration. Retrieved July 2, 2009.
  7. ^ Daley, Bill (March 27, 2012). "Unlocking a new door to the 1940s – 1940 census details to be released to public". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved March 20, 2012.
  8. ^ https://www.census.gov/library/publications/1942/dec/population-vol-1.html
  9. ^ Population of the 100 Largest Cities and Other Urban Places in the United States: 1790 to 1990, U.S. Census Bureau, 1998
  10. ^ "Regions and Divisions". U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on December 3, 2016. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  11. ^ Japanese evacuation from the West coast, 1942 : final report, by De Witt, J. L. (John Lesesne), b. 1880; United States. Army. Western Defense Command
  12. ^ Confirmed: The U.S. Census Bureau Gave Up Names of Japanese-Americans in WW II
  13. ^ Some Japanese-Americans Wrongfully Imprisoned During WWII Oppose Census Question

External links