February 3rd, 2012

Between Wakeman and Arlington

R. and I have both been working on his Z. relatives, primarily the ones in Newark, NJ in the first few decades of the 20th century. There were three households of them on Wakeman Avenue (and we knew who they all were and how they related to each other -- it isn't that kind of mystery) in 1900. By the 1910 census, one of the households is gone and some of the kids have moved on. By the 1920 census, only one household remains. By the 1930 census, the particular household I have been tracking has appeared in a household on the corner of Arlington and Summer. The question, however, is where are they in the 1920 census?

The last name is conveniently distinctive, but, inconveniently, frequently drastically mistranscribed and/or misindexed. However, I went over to Steve Morse's website and used the ED tools to help me figure out where the Wakeman and Arlington addresses are in the 1920 census. My household is at neither their 1910 address nor their 1930 address. And I _still_ cannot find them.

It's all a bit of a mystery. They aren't dead or anything -- I haven't even exhausted the maybe-they-are-living-with-a-relative possibilities. I've been persisting beyond where other Z. researchers have given up for two reasons. (1) I wanted to get a little experience with the ED tools and (2) the people who are hard to find in the census often turn up in the _most_ unexpected places, and finding out why is sometimes the road to a fantastic story.

ED, if you're wondering, stands for "enumeration district". You can think of it as a "chunk" of the census below the county and above a page.