Thursday, August 9, 2012

Sharing What We Know-A 1940 Census Story

  Since I knew the exact address of where my Grandmother Azile was living in April 1940,  I was able to find her quickly on the 1940 Census. She was living with her two older sisters, Mildred Daughrity Jolley and Loretta Daughtrity on Church Street. in Sumter, SC.
 Mildred, 25, was already a widow with a one year old son Lee. Loretta was single, 20, and working as a stenographer.
  My grandmother, Azile Daughrity was listed as single and was 18. She had completed 4 years of High School.  It wouldn't be long before she met and married my grandfather Gilbert Roberts.
  A mark by Grandmom's name let me know that she was the person that the Census Worker got the family information from. Still, there was wrong information. Lee Jolley ,age 1,was marked as a male yet "daughter" is written in the relationship column.  Surely Grandmom knew her nephew was a son!
 There wasn't much new for me to learn from the census information but it was fun seeing the names of those I knew, loved and had heard so much about. A day in their lives recorded for all to see.  I recently visited the lot where the house on Church Street used to be. The house burned many years ago and the land is now part of a city park.  I imagined the census worker coming to their home and getting the important information form my grandmother. It really brought the census to life.
Former Daughrity Property on Church St. Sumter, SC
 I decided it would be fun to send an email with the census record attached to some of the descendants of Mildred and Loretta to share the information I had found. I was hoping that they would enjoy seeing their family members and the information given about them.
   One of those I sent  the census to was to Dianne Dennis. Her mother, Loretta Daughrity Dennis, died when Dianne was just a little girl. She knows very little about her mom.  Soon after I sent Dianne the 1940 Census with her mom listed on it I received a reply. She said that she had not known the address of the home her mother was raised in and that she had no idea that her mother had ever been a stenographer! She was so grateful for the information.
Azile and Loretta Daughrity(sitting)
 Isn't that what this is all about? Finding and sharing the information with others?  I am so glad that I didn't just enter the information in my genealogy program and move on.  I am hoping to hear back from others as well.  I'd like to find out what may have been new information to them and what else they can add to the family story.
 From time to time I have come across those who were not willing to share information that they have found in their genealogy research, but  most have been willing and eager to share what they have.  I would not be where I am today in my research if it was not for the generosity of the genealogical community. Thanks so much for those who have shared and who continue to share either their research and research skills.

Azile and Mildred
 Let's find our people by sharing what we know!