Wednesday, April 6, 2011

7 Tips on the 1911 Scottish Census as used on Scotland's People,

1. The census was held on 2nd April 1911.

2. You cannot scroll through an entire district, only the enumeration district, or institution you have gone into, whereas in previous censuses you could go through an entire district by going forwards or backwards and paying the appropriate number of credits. With this census you would have to find an entry in each enumeration district and then go forwards or backwards.
An example would be Nairn Parish, which has 13 enumeration districts or Cawdor Parish, which has 6. This is relevant to those persons doing local history projects or for doing the history of a street where the street might fall within 2 enumeration districts.
The Free Headers will give you a description of the enumeration district and can be found on page 2 of the header.

3. In the relationship to head of household column, I have noticed that, for the first time compared to previous censuses, there are many references to adopted children with adopted or adpt or a similar code shown; this, of course, is prior to the official adoption act of the 1920s but appears to be a response to the fertility columns.
It did lead me to have to drop one line from my family tree as the 1901 census showed 'son' but the 1911 census clearly stated 'adopted'.
There is much greater use of the word step-son or step-daughter.

4. In many cases the enumerator has entered the appropriate code number in the Single / Married / or Widow column thus obscuring the information written underneath. The codes can be converted as shown below:
1 is a Single Male
2 is a Married Male
3 is a Widower
4 is a Single Female
5 is a Married Female
6 is a Widow

5. The particulars to marriage column have to be read very carefully; they relate only to the wife of the marriage and will only be found if the wife is present. If the wife is not present, for example, she is away on holiday, but the husband and children are present then the information will not be shown.
I found a couple of examples where the enumerator had entered the details for a widow but then put a stroke through the information.      
It relates only to the marriage of the couple living in the household, not their previous marriages or any illegitimate children that either individual may have had.

An example is:
Alexander Cameron Head 31 
Alice Cameron         Wife 33           5   2   2
Minnie Cameron     Daur 12
Jane Cameron         Daur  4
James Cameron      Son   1

In this case, Alexander and Alice have been married for 5 years and have had 2 children born alive and still living from that marriage, Jane and James. Minnie is presumably a daughter of a previous marriage of Alexander Cameron, but this cannot be assumed as there are cases in my own tree where the children from a previous marriage of the wife have taken the surname of their step-father and are not shown as step-children although in the 1911 census the use of Step-Son or Step-Daughter seems to be common practice.

Another example:
Duncan Ferguson Head 47
Flora Ferguson     Wife 43     20  8  5
Finlay Ferguson   Son  13
Annie Ferguson   Daur  7
Duncan and Flora have been married for 20 years and had 8 children born alive; they have 5 children still living of whom two are still living in the same household as their parents. As there is a gap age-wise between Finlay and Annie, I might look for at least one of the deceased children in that period. It also shows that there are three children presumably older than Finlay who have moved away.

Another example:
James  McKenzie  Head  65
Janet  McKenzie  Wife 55    30     7    5
Janet McIntosh   Daur   25    6       3     2
Alexr  McIntosh Grandson     4
Janet McIntosh Granddaur    2 mth
James and Janet have been married for 30 years had 7 children born alive of whom 5 are still living. One of these 5 children, Janet is living in the same household as her parents. Janet has been married for 6 years and had 3 children of whom 2 are still living, Alexr and Janet.

Another example:
Andrew Adams  Head 55
Jessie   Adams Wife   44   14  6  6
George Adams Son    29
Andrew Adams Son   22
Hugh Adams    Son   20
Alexander Adams Son 19
James Adams Son  3
Archibald Mitchell Step son 22
Maggie Adams Daur 25
Kate Adams Daughter 13
Williamina Adams Daughter 12
Sarah Adams Daughter 8
Jessie Adams Daughter 7
Agnes Adams Daughter 5

Andrew and Jessie have been married for 14 years have had 6 children born alive all of whom are still living, that is, James, Kate, Williamina, Sarah, Jessie, Agnes.
George, Andrew, Hugh, Alexander and Maggie are children of a previous marriage of Andrew senior; Archibald Mitchell is a son from a previous relationship of Jessie Adams.

6. The Industry or Service column can be very useful in that it expands on the information in the employment column.
With those working in shops, it states the type of shop and for railway employees it quite often states the name of the railway company.
For clerks and typists it states the type of office they work in.
For example, Thomas Taylor, age 26, a Railway Surfaceman is working for the N.B. Railway which is the North British Railway Company whose staff records can be found at National Records of Scotland (formerly National Archives of Scotland).

7. The birthplace column usually states the county and place name for those born in Scotland and for those born in England, Ireland, Wales it usually just gives the country name.
The enumerator seems to have acted differently in Aberlour Parish, Banffshire in that he put Devon, Devonport as place of birth for my 2 X Great-Grandmother and that is correct.
With those born overseas in India, for example, the name of the state seems to be often given.

This is a guest blog written by Kenneth Nisbet.

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