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1950 Census

I had this post scheduled for later in March. However, it’s now a post for Randy Seaver’s Saturday Night Genealogy Fun challenge.

It’s Saturday Night – 

time for more Genealogy Fun! 

Your mission, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission Impossible music here) is to:1) The 1950 United States Census will be available to search on 1 April 2022 – less than three weeks away. How have you prepared yourself to search it? Have you found 1950 addresses of your family members and persons of interest? Have you identified the State, County, Town and Enumeration District? Have you made a table of your findings so you can systematically find everyone on your list? What will you do with the information you gather?


Are you ready? Do you know where your ancestors may have lived in 1950? While others have been preparing for quite some time, I have to admit I haven’t. I haven’t spent much time on this task for several reasons:

  • My ancestors were living in Dodge City, Emporia, and Yates Center at the time.
  • I learned to use census records by scanning microfilm to locate the desired family. Thus, I can do this again.
  • All of my ancestors were living in Kansas which means that in addition to information from the 1940 census, I also have information from Kansas census records for various years that provide street addresses. (Kansas City and County Records, 1919-1961)

On my dad’s side of the tree, my living ancestors were all living at 911 Second street in Dodge City, Kansas in 1950. Thus, I can use Steve Morse’s “Viewing 1940/1950 Enumeration Districts in One Step” site to locate the map for Dodge City.

To figure out which Enumeration District I need to access, I am relying on previous knowledge. From personal experience, I know that 911 Second is the southwest corner of the intersection of 2nd avenue and Elm Street. I also have deed records indicating that this is lot 7 of block 47. When I enlarge the map of Dodge City, and locate this intersection, I find that I need to look in ED 29-15.

When it comes to my mom’s side of the tree, my grandparents were living in Emporia while my great grandfathers were living in Yates Center and Neosho Falls. Since my grandparents tended to move around a lot, I need to pin down their probable address in 1950. A search of the Ancestry database, U.S. City Directories 1822-1995 for the surname BRILES living in Emporia, Kansas provides the information needed. In both 1949 and 1951, my grandparents were living at 924 Constitution.

A search of Google helps me put 924 Constitution on a map.

From the Google map, I figured out that Constitution Street is two blocks west of Commercial street. Commercial street is highlighted in blue on the enumeration map. With my previous knowledge of Emporia’s streets, I knew that 9th avenue was north of 6th avenue (which is also highlighted in blue). Locating those two streets on the ED map, I learn that ED 56-16 is the one that I need to use to locate my grandparents.

For my great-grandfathers, it appears that I will have to do more scanning of pages. My great grandfather, Charles Mentzer, was living in Neosho Falls. Since, the town is not separated from the rest o the township, I will need to scan the entire township (ED 104-7) to locate Charles.

My other great-grandfather on my mom’s side was living in Yates Center at the time. When I enlarge the ED map of Woodson County, it appears that Yates Center is in 4 different EDs but there is no map of the town showing which portions of the town are in which ED.

Thus, it appears that I will need to scan several EDs to locate Edward G. Briles. Since I would have a lot of MENTZER cousins living in Woodson county, scanning these various EDs will help me locate them while locating my great-grandfather.

To help me make sure I scan all of the townships where my MENTZER cousins lived, I can use a search of the Ancestry database, Kansas, U.S., City and County Census Records, 1919-1961 for the MENTZER surname between 1948-1952. The results from this search will allow me to create a checklist of cousins I need to find.

Besides these MENTZER cousins, I would have an aunt living in Emporia and great aunts and uncles on my ‘to-do’ list. Using information I have already compiled on these individuals, I can use the same process described above to identify the appropriate Enumeration District. Besides my Mentzer cousins shown above, I quickly created a list of ancestors and their siblings that will need located in the 1950 census.

  • Herbert Mentzer — ED 16-19 in Coffey County, Kansas
  • Leon Crawford family (including his mother) – ED 29-15 in Ford County, Kansas
  • Helen Horton – ED 29-16 in Ford County, Kansas
  • Myrtle Jones – ED 29-18 in Ford County, Kansas
  • Esther Noll — ED 29-6 in Ford County, Kansas
  • E. O. Briles family — ED 56-16 in Lyon County, Kansas
  • Letha Doolittle — ED 56-31 in Lyon County, Kansas
  • Gladys Green – ED 56-31 in Lyon County, Kansas
  • Edward G Briles – EDs 104-14 to 104-17 in Woodson County, KS
  • Glen Briles – EDs 104-14 to 104-17 in Woodson County, KS
  • Lulu Cope – EDs 104-14 to104-17 in Woodson County, KS
  • Charles Mentzer – ED 104-7 in Woodson County, KS
  • Leslie Mentzer – ED 104-7 in Woodson County, KS

My to-do list will contain some great aunts and uncles living in larger communities. If the above process does not help me locate them easily, I will just wait until those cities are indexed to do my search.

2 thoughts on “1950 Census

  1. You look to be well prepared to find your many relatives in 1950. Good luck with the research.

    • I think it is more luck than preparation. I grew up going to the house in Dodge City. I also benefit from the Kansas census records that helped me identify exactly where my mother’s side of the tree lived.

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