The countdown has begun! On April 2, 2012, the National Archives will release the 1940 Census and provide free, digital access through their website: 1940census.archives.gov. You will be able to search, browse and download the census directly from your home computer. Yes, there really is a countdown as well!
Why now? There is a 72-year privacy law which prevents the public use of census records. This census was originally taken on April 1, 1940, so now the information can officially be released.
Check out this short video by the National Archives, which gives a great introduction describing why the 1940 Census is so important.
The National Archives suggests that you prepare ahead of time by making a list of people you may want to look up, and then locating their addresses so you will be able to search by enumeration district. They have provided detailed instructions on how to get ready.
Also, don’t miss a presentation at the Darien Library on March 17th by Christopher Zarr, an Education Specialist at the National Archives. This event is co-sponsored by the Middlesex Genealogical Society. Click here for more info!