The last census release to the public was of the US Federal 1940 Census in April 2012. Now everyone waits ten years before the next decade census – 1950 is released on April 1, 2022. By law, for privacy reasons, census records are not released to the public until 72 years after that census was taken.
However, for your own personal family research there is a method to view a copy of a 1950 census record before 2022. The later census records are held in the Census Bureau’s National Processing Center (NPC) in Jeffersonville, Indiana. These include to the last census of 2010.
Individuals may request their own records (before they are publicly available) via the Census Bureau Age Search service. The information on that 1950 Census can be gathered by only to the named person, his or her heirs, or legal representatives. There is a set fee at $65 per census per person search and an application has to be completed first. The application is BC-600, a search for census records. It takes about 3 to 4 weeks to get the search and copy out to you by mail. If you need it sooner, there is an additional $20 charge. If you want information on persons in that household, a charge of $10 extra is made. All the details are written out on the application.
If you want to search a relative who is deceased, the person submitting the BC-600 application must be a direct blood relative, the surviving spouse or the legal estate representative.
To get the 1950s census information is easier than the more recent years, there are restriction and more details needed, such as a resident’s address for the 1960 to 2010 censuses.
So if you do not want to wait until 2022 and are willing to spend some money, that census data can be sent to you early. You just can’t get the details from the 1950 census on cousins, friends or neighbors, but for your siblings or parents it is good.
Photos: 1950 Census being taken at a person’s home; Census taken of the Harry Truman family in 1950 and the census being taken of Albert Einstein in 1950.
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