Sunday, October 25, 2015

Birthplace on Census Records

This week’s homework for Dear Myrt’s Tracing Immigrant Origins Study Group is to review census records to find country of origin for our immigrant ancestors.

Census records show the birthplace of my great grandfather Joseph Dachtera as
Prussia – 1900
Prussian Poland – 1910
Poland – 1920

They’re all correct

Poland did not exist as a sovereign nation when he was born – her lands had been divided up among her more powerful neighbors, Prussia, Austria, and Russia.  But at the end of World War I, Poland’s sovereignty was restored. In 1920 his birthplace was once again within the borders of Poland.

I’m tempted to write more here about the wealth of immigration information to be found in census records, but I suspect that may be part of our next assignment so I’ll hold off for now.


  1. interesting record I had the same of my grandparents'

  2. Mary, interesting points about the development of a country! Just remember to add a source to your census. Here is a template for the census:
    [Year] U.S. census, [County] County, [State], population schedule, [City], Enumeration District [ED] ___, p. ____ [(penned) or (stamped)], dwelling ____, family ___, [name]: digital images, Ancestry ( accessed [date]); from National Archives microfilm publication __, roll ___, image ____.