I am trying to find my grandfather in the censuses dating from 1920 through 1970. I started with the 1950 census and he doesn't appear to be there. Why can't I get earlier census information?

  • First,the 1960 and 1970 U.S. censuses won't be released to the public until 72 years have passed.  Who specifically are you looking for?  Birthdate?  Birthplace?  Location he would have been in?  Do you have any addresses?  Have you tried city directories to find addresses?  The 1940, 1930, and 1920 censuses have been name indexed, and large cities have been street indexed.

  • Hi, Joel.

    Thanks for responding to my inquiry. Yes, I have most of the info that you mention. the person I am looking for is my grandfather, Juan R. Garcia: born 8/29/1899 in Teocaltiche, Jalisco, Mexico. He came to the US around 1914-1916 and was working in Globe, AZ for a short time until he moved to San Bernardino, CA. During the 1920's he lived at 1214 Spruce St, San Bernardino until around 1942. In the 1950's He lived at 680 Mt. Vernon, San Bernardino.


  • ok... let me show you how to do this.  Let's find him in 1930.  Go to: https://stevemorse.org/census/unified.html?year=1930  Note at the top you can change the year, you are at 1930.... but you can find 1950, 1940, 1920 as well.  Now, pick California for State, and City or Town pick San Bernardino.  Now pick Spruce from the Street list.  There are two EDs shown on the bottom left.  We are going to try to get it down to 1 ED.  Enter the House Number 1214 and "see google map".... which will show you the street names on the block... 6th, 5th, Garner Ave, Mt Vernon Ave N.  Go back to the Unified Tool and pick 6th.... still 2, now pick Garner Ave.... ahhh.... one, 36-103.  Now click on that ED #, it's a link.  It's going to take you to Viewing Census Images.... pick the free display.  That's going to take you to FamilySearch.org, registration required, but it's free.   The Free Display will take you to the first sheet of the ED.  There are 56 sheets.  By looking on the left columns, you will see the street name and house #.  It's just a question of going through the sheets, and on image 19 of 56... voila... thats your person.   Note that 680 N Mt Vernon Ave in 1950 is in Colton.