FamilySearch adding 1920 Census online

Complete US Census Index 1790-1930 to be free online.

FamilySearch.org (the Family History Library – Salt Lake City, UT) announced today that it will complete its online index to the US Census 1790 to 1930, making the entire index free online for the first time.

Currently FamilySearch has online free indexes to the 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 and 1900 US Federal Census online at its FamilySearchLabs site. It announced work on the 1910 census index a few weeks ago.

Today FamilySearch announced that it will immediately work with The Generations Network (TGN – also known as Ancestry.com) and begin putting the 1920 census index online for free. TGN will swap it’s index to the 1920 census and in exchange FamilySearch gave TGN their digital version of the 1900 census.

As I wrote earlier – the Family History Library’s indexing project has done high quality work and the FHL’s version of the 1900 census is the best online with double keyed indexes and brand new digital images of each page of the census.

FamilySearch will merge the Ancestry indexes with the new FamilySearch indexes to create an enhanced census index, which will be added to both sites. The final indexes will be free on FamilySearch.org

FamilySearch will use the 1920 Census index from Ancestry as a first pass and will begin to double check and correct each entry. FamilySearch will also add more indexed fields and arbitrate any discrepancies between the two indexes. This re-indexing of the 1920 census is currently in progress. Once completed, the enhanced 1920 index will be available on both sites.

Genealogists interested in helping create the improved index may volunteer at FamilySearchIndexing.

As FamilySearch did previously in an agreement with Ancestry for the 1880 census – the 1920 census will be searchable for free on FamilySearch.org but to view the page images, researchers will need to pay a fee and will be redirected to the page images on Ancestry.com

It’s a great day for genealogy.
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Written by Thomas Jay Kemp

Thomas Jay Kemp

Thomas Jay Kemp is the Director of Genealogy Products at GenealogyBank. Tom Kemp is an internationally known librarian and archivist – he is the author of over 35 genealogy books and hundreds of articles about genealogy and family history.

He previously served as the Chair of the National Council of Library & Information Associations (Washington, DC) and as Library Director of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania and the New England Historic Genealogical Society.

An active genealogist, he has been working on his own family history for 47 years. With the rapidly growing online archives at GenealogyBank – it is a great day for genealogy!

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One thought on “FamilySearch adding 1920 Census online

  1. It is a great day for genealogy! For those with access to Heritage Quest through their local Family History Center or a participating public library a person can see all of the censuses as well. Sometimes Heritage Quest’s index leaves something to be desired but their images are usually clear. Having Family Search indexing along with another place to view images will help us view those images we might otherwise have to pay for.

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