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"The works organization is logical and relatively user friendly... this is a useful work that should be added to the reference collections of high school and university libraries."-ARBA

"The book itself combines the factual information expected from a reference source with an engaging narrative. Is it an accessible look back at our past and is a decent compilation of previously published information packaged in a way to make it more available to the general public...Because it is so readable and researchers will likely want to spend time immersed in the narrative, this would make a good choice to circulate..."-Booklist

This is Who We Were
A Companion to the 1940 Census


Pub. Date: August 2012
Hardcover: 600 pages
ISBN: 978-1-61925-007-9
Price: $160.00
EBook ISBN: 978-1-61925-008-6 EBook Vendors

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A companion resource to the 1940 Census just released by the US National Archives, This is Who We Were, provides the reader with a deeper understanding of what life was like in America in 1940 and how it compares statistically to life today. Using both original material from the 1940 Census (reprinted here in a different color), readers will find richly-illustrated Personal Profiles, Economic Data, and Current Events to give meaning and depth to what life was like in 1940 America as the country was emerging from depression, but on the verge of war. Next, a wide range of data from the 1940 and 2010 Census are put side-by-side so users can quickly and easily see differences and similarities over these past 70 years.

Background Information - Then & Now: Provides the reader with a framework to explore this interesting text including the Media Response to the 1940 Census and State Ranking Tables that compare the 1940 to the 2010 Census by 16 different data points. Individual cities are also ranked at the back of the volume.

Personal Profiles: This section profiles 26 Americans whose lives were sandwiched between the Great Depression and World War II, undeniably a fascinating time in America's history. Each profile also offers interesting detail on the individual's community, not only where he or she worked, but where they lived, shopped, and schooled their children.

When possible, profiles include original tables from the 1940 Census. For example, the story of an autoworker in Detroit, Michigan includes nine original tables from the 1940 Census, which are specific to Detroit in 1940. They are reprinted exactly as they appeared 73 years ago, and provide population statistics about Detroit's citizens including age, education, country of birth, and employment.

Historical Snapshots: Examines the decade leading up to 1940 through a historical lens. What was going on in America? What new products were invented? What movies were popular? What clothing styles were fashionable? This fun, easy-to-read section also offers the "facts" in politics, social action and more. These snapshots bring to mind when Social Security checks were first distributed (late 1930s), when McDonald's first opened (1940), and hundreds more facts that help paint a picture of America in the years leading up to, thus influencing, results of the 1940 Census.

Economy of the Times: Presents a wide range of economic data, including the prices of food, clothing, transportation and housing, typical salaries for dozens of jobs and so much more. This section provides a fascinating look at the economic picture of 1940 and how the engine that drives our economy has changed. For example, Economy of the Times shows that the average utility bill in 1939 was $23.66 A YEAR!

All Around Us -What We Saw, Wrote, Read & Listened To: There is no better way to put your finger on the pulse of a country than to read its magazines and newspapers. This sections offers 50 original pieces - articles, comic strips, advertisements, and book excerpts - that influenced those Americans who made up the 1940 Census. This section offers a fascinating look at the current trends and issues facing the average American family from 1930-1940.

Census Appendix: The Appendix offers two original elements from the 1940 Census - United States Summary and Comparison of Principal Cities.

The Summary explains how the 1940 Census data was collected and compiled, and compares its results with data as early at 1790 - the year of the first U.S. Census. In 65 original pages, supported by maps, charts and tables, this document provides not only a look at America in 1940, but compares its findings to earlier enumerations.

The Comparison of Principal Cities includes those cities with populations of 100,000 or mroe in 1940, of which there were 97. These 97 cities are compared in 49 tables that detail population characteristics, like Minor Races, Male to Female Ratio, Age by Race, Age by Sex, Females in the Voting Population, Nonwhite Males and Females by Employment Status, Major Occupation Group for Female Workers, etc.

This is Who We Were: A Companion to the 1940 Census provides a critical link to America's history. Its stories of the men, women and children who actually took pen to paper and responded to the 1940 Census questions encourages readers to focus on this particular time in U.S. history long enough to learn the whole story, not just for the few minutes it takes to scan down a list of numbers or names.

This is Who We Were is sure to be of value as both a serious research tool for students of American history as well as an intriguing climb up America's family tree for all of us that. This title will be an important acquisition for high school, public and academic libraries as well as social science and history reference collections.

Pub. Date: August 2012
Hardcover: 600 pages
ISBN: 978-1-61925-007-9
Price: $160.00
EBook ISBN: 978-1-61925-008-6 EBook Vendors

Note: If you find this work does not fit your budget, please print out this page and bring it to your local library. There is a reasonable chance they either have a copy, can direct you to a library that does, or will be willing to purchase it for their reference collection.