WHITEHOUSE FAMILY HISTORY CENTRE

 

1.  INTRODUCTION TO CENSUS FILES

 

This document explains and provides links to the WFHC's sortable indexed transcripts of Whitehouses in censuses of the British Isles and the United States of America.

 

1.1 CENSUSES OF THE BRITISH ISLES

The indexed transcripts provided here are for the 1801-21 censuses of Wednesbury (Staffordshire), 1841, 1851, 1861, 1871 and 1881 censuses of England & Wales, Isle of Man and the Channel Islands, drafts for the Scottish censuses of these years, the 1891 census of Cannock, Staffordshire and a 1911 census file for England & Wales, Isle of Man and the Channel Islands.  The files are in MS Excel 2013 as an indexed transcript, arranged by surname, forename(s) and age.  With a few exceptions, the whole household has been transcribed wherever a Whitehouse has been found.  Thus, the files can be downloaded and sorted to display the household, along with the address and WFHC reference number (for 1841-81, sort by the successive columns from PC onwards, except that the WFHC ref. column does not need to be sorted).  The 1911 census has been provided in its original order ("oo" in the file name) as well as sorted by Surname, Forenames, Age, Residence County, Residence Town, Street Address, House Number of the street and Household Number.

 

A unique feature of the 1841 to 1911 files is that they are annotated (against the head of household only) with the reference numbers of WFHC correspondents' genealogies.  These references enable trees to be followed through the various census returns, as well as other indexes on this website.

 

The 1801-21 censuses of Wednesbury show head of household, address and a head count of the people in each household, broken down into age bands.

 

Coverage is theoretically complete for the 1841, 1851, 1861, 1871, 1881 and 1911 censuses of England, Wales, Isle of Man and the Channel Islands, but the odd omission cannot be entirely ruled out.

 

Some of these files require further checking and errors are found from time to time, but they do offer an alternative and often improved transcription than existing on-line databases for finding Whitehouses.  The files will be updated from time to time and the updates can be distinguished by the yymmdd date appearing in the file name.  Researchers who have failed to find their Whitehouse ancestor in one of the above censuses using other indexes are recommended to try the files here.  They contain many Whitehouses that have been misindexed elsewhere and some that have been misenumerated.

 

Coverage of the 1891 census is limited to the Cannock area of mid-Staffordshire, being one which is very densely populated with Whitehouses.

 

1.2 CENSUSES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

The indexed transcripts provided here are complete for all states in the 1880 census, but for other years, 1840 to 1870, for a few states only.

 

2.  LINKS IN BRIEF

 

2.1 BRITISH CENSUSES

"E&W" stands for England & Wales; "SCT" for Scotland.  "Rows of entry" excludes the header row.

 

1801, 1811 & 1821 Census of Wednesbury

E&W 1801-21 CEN WY 140105.xls 35 rows of entry (11 rows for 1801 & 1821 and 13 rows for 1811)

 

1841 Census

E&W 1841 CEN 210313.xls 7829 rows of entry

 

SCT 1841 CEN DRAFT 210313.xls 82 rows of entry

.

1851 Census

E&W 1851 CEN 210313.xls 7965 rows of entry.

 

SCT 1851 CEN DRAFT 210313.xls 122 rows of entry

 

1861 Census

E&W 1861 CEN 210313.xls 8745 rows of entry.

 

SCT 1861 CEN DRAFT 130101.xls 95 rows of entry

 

1871 Census

E&W 1871 CEN 210313.xls 10459 rows of entry

 

SCT 1871 CEN DRAFT 130101.xls 102 rows of entry

 

1881 Census

E&W 1881 CEN 210313.xls 12385 rows of entry

 

SCT 1881 CEN DRAFT 210313.xls 132 rows of entry

 

1891 census of Cannock (Staffordshire) area

E&W 1891 CEN CK 210313.xls 636 rows of entry

 

1911 Census

E&W 1911 CEN 220107.xls 17067 rows of entry.  Improvement work on this is in progress.

 

General

REL CODES 171230.xls provides a key to the abbreviations used for head of household, wife, son, daughter etc.  This document also includes relationships to the testator or intestate deceased for the purposes of grants of probate and letters of administration.

 

CHAPMAN CTY CODES 030620.xls shows the well-known 3-letter county abbreviations in common use in genealogical databases.  The modern version is used here.

 

COUNTRY CODES 030620.xls gives the internationally recognised 2-letter abbreviations of the larger countries.

 

2.2 US CENSUSES                                                                                                    

US 1840 CEN IN KY 210313oo.xls covers Indiana and Kentucky, 115 rows of entry.

 

US 1850 CEN IN KY 210313.xls covers Indiana and Kentucky, 204 rows of entry.

 

US 1860 CEN IN KY 210313.xls covers Indiana and Kentucky, 318 rows of entry.

 

US 1870 CEN IA IN KY 210313.xls covers Iowa, Indiana and Kentucky, 347 rows of entry.

 

US 1880 CEN 210313.xls covers all states, 3135 rows of entry.

 

3.  CURRENT SCOPE OF THE FILES

 

3.1  BRITISH CENSUSES

Nomenclature and territorial coverage

The term “British Isles” nowadays means the United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland, plus the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.  “Great Britain” means England, Wales & Scotland only.  Before Ireland was partitioned in 1922, the whole of the country was included within the British Isles.  Alas, the 1861 to 1891 censuses of Ireland have been destroyed and very few of the earlier ones survived the 1922 fire at the Four Courts building in Dublin where the records were held. The “British” censuses on this website do not include any part of Ireland. There are separate files for (a) the group of countries consisting of England, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man and (b) Scotland.  To avoid long file names, the abbreviation “E&W” has been adopted for group (a) and "SCT" for group (b).

 

1841 census

England, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man

West Midlands has been obtained partly by trawling (reading through a film), a particularly unreliable method.  All parts which were trawled have been checked against the "British Origins" index.  All other areas have been produced by using the "British Origins" and "Ancestry" indexes.  “British Origins” is now part of “Findmypast”.

 

Scotland

This is in draft form, being based on the Ancestry index plus a few "trawlings".  Until it is checked against the original records, that is to say images of the census returns, it should be treated with extreme caution.

 

1851 census

England, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man

West Midlands has been compiled from or checked against the LDS (Warwickshire), Friend (Worcestershire) and BMSGH (Staffordshire) indexes.  It is therefore likely to be highly complete.  It covers National Archives pieces HO 107/1999 to 2075.  London, defined as The National Archives pieces HO 107/1466 to 1591 plus all of 1768 (West Ham RD), has been covered by local indexes.  All other areas have been compiled mainly from published paper or microfiche name indexes, but some counties have never been indexed fully in this way.  The gaps have been filled with the aid of the "Ancestry" indexes.

 

Scotland

This has been compiled in draft form as follows.  In phase 1, the counties covered were Argyllshire, Ayrshire, Dumfriesshire (no entries), Dunbartonshire, Kirkcudbrightshire (no entries), Lanarkshire (including Glasgow), Renfrewshire and Wigtownshire (no entries).  These were transcribed from films, but have not been checked.  In phase 2, the Ancestry index was used to supplement the phase 1 entries and extend the area of coverage to the whole country, but without any checking against the original records.

 

1861 census

England, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man

West Midlands has been derived by a combination of trawling, paper name indexes and the "Ancestry" indexes.  All three counties (Staffs, Warwicks, Worcs) have been checked for completeness against the "Ancestry" and "Findmypast" indexes.  A quality control project to check all the entries in Staffs, Worcs and rural Warwicks has been completed.  This was done by a  Whit* search in “Ancestry” (where * = any termination).  All other areas have been completed, using the "Ancestry" and "Findmypast" indexes.

 

Scotland

This has been compiled in draft form from the “Ancestry” index. None of the entries has been checked against the original records.

 

1871 census

England, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man

All areas have been searched in both the “Ancestry” and “British Origins” (now part of "Findmypast") indexes.  Some paper indexes have also been used in the West Midlands.

 

Scotland

This has been compiled in draft form from the “Ancestry” index, supplemented by guesses to correct obviously incorrect transcriptions.  None of the entries has been checked against the original records.  One of them was investigated, determined provisionally to relate to Whitecross, and omitted.

 

1881 census

England, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man

This was compiled using various publicly available databases.

 

Scotland

This is another file compiled in draft form from the “Ancestry” index. None of the entries has been checked against the original records. 

 

1891 census of Cannock

This covers official piece numbers RG13/2217 to 2222, taking in Cannock town, Brewood, Bushbury, Cheslyn Hay, Essington, Great Wyrley, Hednesford and Norton Canes.  In the mid-19th century, this area was probably the most densely populated with Whitehouses of anywhere in the world.  The index was initiated by trawling 3 of the 6 pieces above, but, after coverage was expanded, the “Ancestry” and “Findmypast indexes” were used and checked against each other and against the trawled entries.

 

1911 census

England, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man

The excellent images produced by Findmypast have been transcribed afresh.  Very little attention has been paid to the FMP transcript and many inaccuracies in the FMP index and transcript have been corrected.  Images in which the information about disabilities has been blanked over have been used, so the transcript does not include them.  Incidentally, these blanked-over columns were often used to make comments about nationality or disparaging remarks.  More recently parts of this database have been checked against "Ancestry", work which is ongoing.

 

3.2 US CENSUSES

The current scope of the 1840 to 1870 census files can be seen from the file names, where the usual abbreviations are used for the names of States (see Table below).  The 1880 census is theoretically complete for all states.

 

AL

Alabama

IN

Indiana

NC

North Carolina

SD

South Dakota

AK

Alaska

KS

Kansas

ND

North Dakota

TN

Tennessee

AR

Arkansas

KY

Kentucky

NE

Nebraska

TX

Texas

AZ

Arizona

LA

Louisiana

NH

New Hampshire

UT

Utah

CA

California

MA

Massachusetts

NJ

New Jersey

VT

Vermont

CT

Connecticut

MD

Maryland

NV

Nevada

VA

Virginia

DC

District of Columbia

ME

Maine

NY

New York

WA

Washington

DE

Delaware

MI

Michigan

OH

Ohio

WI

Wisconsin

FL

Florida

MN

Minnesota

OK

Oklahoma

WV

West Virginia

GA

Georgia

MO

Missouri

OR

Oregon

WY

Wyoming

IA

Iowa

MS

Mississippi

PA

Pennsylvania

 

 

ID

Idaho

MT

Montana

RI

Rhode Island

 

 

IL

Illinois

NE

Nebraska

SC

South Carolina

 

 

 

Dominion of Canada:  NB = New Brunswick; NS = Nova Scotia

 

All the information has been derived by making searches in “Ancestry”, but since deviant renderings of the name have been covered, the results are superior to those achieved merely by searching in the name Whitehouse.

 

4.   DETAILED EXPLANATIONS

 

4. 1 GENERAL COMMENTS

These census transcripts are intended to include every normal household containing at least one Whitehouse (or variant name).   Each transcript includes the whole entry of the household, even if the only Whitehouse is a servant.   However, where the name appears in an institution, e.g. workhouse, prison, asylum, school, hotel, lodging house or boarding establishment, only the Whitehouse is normally listed, along with the "household number" (see below).

 

Those having Whitehouse as a forename have been included, even where the surname Whitehouse does not appear in the entry.

 

Generally, the aim has been to reach a compromise between faithfulness to the original and a document which can be searched fairly easily, accommodated comfortably on A4 paper and printed out at reasonable cost.

 

In general, question marks (query signs) to denote a doubtful interpretation have been used sparingly, but some were inevitable.  A single space has been left between the end of the item and the question mark.

 

Round brackets, sometimes left open, are reproduced as in the census return.   Square brackets are used for remarks that do not appear in the original, e.g. "[sic]", "[Illegible]".

 

Where the item does not make good sense or reads oddly, "[sic]" appears after it, with one space between the word and "[sic]".  "Sic" is Latin for "thus" and the conventional way of saying: "I know it doesn't make sense or seems odd, but this is what the original says."   Use of this has been sparing, to avoid nuisance in searching.  Lately, for the British censuses, I have used it increasingly in relation to the place of birth, where the literal transcription is felt to be wrong.

  

4.2 1851, 1861, 1871 & 1881 ENGLAND , WALES, CHANNEL ISLANDS & ISLE OF MAN CENSUSES

 SURNAME (Column A)

The surname sticks faithfully to the original.  If the name appearing is not WHITEHOUSE, but, say, WHITEHOUS, it is shown in the Surname column as WHITEHOUSE, but noted under "Address & Notes" as a variant.  This expedient has been adopted to ensure that the surname always sorts properly.  Where there is a doubt about whether the surname is WHITEHOUSE, it has been included.  In several instances, other years of the census have been consulted.

 

In a few cases, the surname is formally not stated, the enumerator having apparently failed to insert "do" (ditto).

Because "No name stated" is so very unhelpful, the ditto has been inferred where the context justifies it.

 

FORENAME(S) (Column B)

All forenames are given faithfully, so all the "William H" and "Wm" entries will appear after the "William" ones.  Ingenuity might have to be displayed to pick up abbreviations and deviant spellings.  However, it is not necessary to specify "Wm.", with the full stop (period) as all full stops have been eliminated from the document.

 

"Joseph" is frequently shortened to "Jos" or "Josh", while "Thomas" can be "Tho", "Thos", "Ths" or even "Thoms".  As mentioned above, no general attempt has been made to indicate when the final letter of the name is raised.   In a few instances, a note has been added.  These include "Josh", where a note has been entered as to whether the final 'h' is raised, indicating Joseph, or level, in which case the name might be either Joshua or Joseph.

 

One particular problem forename is "Louisa".  This baffled many enumerators and resulted in many phonetic spellings such as Leweser and Luizer, as well as the misspelling "Lousia".

 

REL = Relationship to Head of Household (Column C)

The code adopted (see the link above) is similar to that used by the late A.F.Friend (and many other census indexers).   A single code has been adopted for both census and probate purposes. 

 

Relationship to the head of household has been interpreted in those cases where it is clear that the literal designation cannot be correct, e.g. where a visitor's son appears simply as "son", this has been changed to "visitor's son" (VR's SO in the code used).

 

In some instances, there is no "Head" given.  This could be because the person who is regarded as "Head" is away from home and the enumerator has not nominated another person in his or her place.  Alternatively, a person in the preceding entry might have been regarded as the "Head".  In this transcript, the census return has been followed faithfully.

 

CON = Marital Condition (Column D)

The marital status has been entered faithfully, except that the code makes no distinction between widow and widower.  Where the entry says "Single", the letter S has been used.   Quite often, the enumerator has not listed a wife as married.   Probably this was oversight, but blanks have been preserved as blanks, in case they might have some significance in some entries.

AGE (Column E)

The transcripts do not allot separate male and female columns, but where initials only are given or the forename is unclear or unusual, "[Male]" or "[Female]" has been added.   Ages of less than a year, in days (d), weeks (w) or months (m), are treated as 0 (zero) years, so that they will sort better.  The age given appears in "Address & Notes".  Similarly, ages in half years and ages of 12 months upwards have been re-expressed as the age in years on the last birthday and a note added to "Address & Notes".

 

Because Excel mis-sorts numbers with any textual matter following them, question marks, alternatives and "[sic]" comments do not appear in the age column.  See "Address & Notes".

 

OCCUPATION (Column F)

This has been entered faithfully, except that the first word of the entry and every noun and adjectival noun contained in it begins with a capital letter.   This is to help in searching occupations and make data entry easier.

 

Where the occupation has been given as "Widow", "Visitor" etc., this information has been transferred to the correct column and the occupation column left blank.

 

BIRTH CTY (Column G)

Chapman county codes have been used for counties of the United Kingdom and Ireland.  For foreign countries, other than Ireland (IRL), the International Standards' Organisation's two letter codes have been adopted, e.g. Netherlands = NL.   See the links to keys provided in Section 4 above.

 

BIRTHPLACE (Column H)

The policy has been to keep faithfully to the original.  Consequently, because of the different spellings and abbreviations, searching under this heading might need care on occasions.   For example, Birmingham might appear in full or as "Birm", "Birmg", "Birmm", "Bham" or even "Bm".

 

PC = Piece (Column I)

This refers to the number given by the National Archives to a census district and is consequently the number of their microfilm.  The prefix HO 107/… (1841 and 1851), RG9/…  (1861) or RG/10… (1871) has been omitted for brevity.

 

FO = Folio (Column J)

The Folio number is that appearing as a large, thick number at the top right-hand corner of every other page.  It should not be confused with the page number, which is the much smaller one appearing at the top centre of every page.  The folio consists of the page on which this number appears and the one AFTER it.   The convention in the WFHC transcripts is to use the folio number of the first entry of the household.  If the enumeration continues onto a new folio, that is disregarded and the first number used throughout the household.   Quite often, folio numbers given here differ from those of other indexes.  This is because (a) occasionally, the other indexes are wrong, a common mistake being to attribute the folio number to the page BEFORE the one on which it appears; or (b) they use a different convention, e.g. if a household spills over onto a new folio at entry No. 3, to record entries 1 & 2 as belonging to the first folio number and entries 3 onwards to the second folio number.

 

The above procedure is followed even for institutions such as prisons, workhouses, schools and lodging houses. Thus, the folio at which the first page of names in the institution begins is entered in the FO column.   The folio at which the Whitehouse entry appears and the page number are added in "Address & Notes".

 

Where an additional folio has been inserted in the piece with an "A" number, such as "60A", the "A" has been omitted from this column, to prevent problems in searching (because the suffix "A" causes the folio number to be shunted to the end, after the highest normal number).  A note appears under "Address & Notes" that the folio number is 60A.

 

Scottish census returns are not foliated, so the references are to enumeration district, page and schedule number. 

The Parish or District numbers applicable to the Old Parochial Registers have been used for identification purposes, appearing under the heading “DIST”.  The inserted column “SD” immediately following “DIST” refers to the sub-district.

 

PG = Page (1881 only; Column K)

 

SCH = Schedule Number (Column K 1851-71; Column L 1881)

The Schedule number is the number given by the enumerator to an entry for an individual household.  Enumerators had different ideas about what constitutes a household.   For example, a group of lodgers might be considered to be a household and none of them designated "Head".  The policy here has been to adhere faithfully to the enumerator's schedules and not to merge entries from neighbouring schedule numbers or to separate entries within a schedule number, unless there is an obvious error in numbering.

 

For example, if schedule 132 follows 130, but it appears that 130 contains two households, the second one has been numbered 131 in the WFHC transcript. Schedule numbers followed by "A" have been treated in the same way as for Folio numbers - see above.

 

HN = Household Number (Column L 1851-71; Column M 1881))

This is the number used to denote the order of the individual entries within a household, so that the original order can be retained in the transcript if desired.  The numbers will normally be consecutive, starting with 1.   However, where the WHITEHOUSE is found in an institution, it is not practical to list all the entries within the institution, as there are too many.  Accordingly, the number of entries has been counted and the WHITEHOUSE given his or her correct number in the order.  Thus, the transcript might record a single name, WHITEHOUSE, John, with, for example, HN = 34 and no preceding entries.  The folio number given in the column FO is that of the beginning of the institution.  To help to locate the WHITEHOUSE entry within an institution, the folio and page number where he appears are given in "Address & Notes". 

 

ADDRESS & NOTES (Column M 1851-71; Column N 1881))

The policy here has been to use the correct spelling of the address, whenever this is known to me or obvious, ignoring the enumerator's spelling.   Of course, in my ignorance, some road names might not be correctly spelt.

 

The address given is the road name and, where given by the enumerator, house number, followed by a colon, single space and then the town name.   Wards and parishes have been mostly omitted, as they are frequently omitted by enumerators and when available are often confusing.   Generally, addresses which refer to particular buildings or to courts have been edited to place them before the name of the street.

 

Street names are reproduced as in the entry, except that the commoner suffix designations have been abbreviated, e.g. "Street" to "St".  Town names have been changed where necessary to give the correct spelling.  However, some abbreviation of town names has been needed to meet space requirements, e.g. Birmingham to B'ham, West Bromwich to W Brom, Great Wyrley to Gt Wyrley and Wolverhampton to W'hampton.   The general policy has been to provide only one town name, even when the "town" is a small village, in order to save space.   Where it is thought that there could be a problem for some readers in identifying the "town", because it is a hamlet or a small locality, the name of the associated town has been included as well, e.g. as in "Village: Blackheath: Rowley Regis".

 

An address is shown only for the first member of each household.   Consequently, to find the address of a second or subsequent member, call up the whole household by sorting first by Household Number alone, then sorting again by Piece, Folio and Schedule.

 

The disabilities noted by the enumerator have been included in the Address & Notes column in capitals, e.g. "DEAF".

 

WFHC REF (Column N 1851-71; Column O 1881)

Each genealogy registered with the WFHC is given a number.  The reference is given only in the first row of each household.   Remember also that the first person in a household is not necessarily a Whitehouse.  A question mark is used for the more doubtful references.  If there is more than one reference number, some of which are more doubtful and others less so, semicolons are used to separate the more secure from the more doubtful.  References are assigned on the basis of reasonable probability (rather than beyond all reasonable doubt).  It is strongly recommended in all cases to call up the whole household by sorting first by Household Number alone, then sorting again by Piece, Folio and Schedule. 

 

4.3 1841 ENGLAND, WALES, CHANNEL ISLANDS & ISLE OF MAN CENSUS

The arrangement of the transcript is as similar as possible to that for the 1851 census, but with the following alterations.   Obviously, columns of the 1851 census not appearing in the 1841 census (REL, CON, BIRTHPLACE) were omitted and BTH CTY has changed to BORN SAME CTY ?.  

 

The "BORN SAME CTY ?" column in this transcript contains the answers Y = yes, N = no, SCT= Scotland, IRL = Ireland, FOR = foreign parts.  In the original, one letter abbreviations were used, making it difficult to tell "S" (Scotland) from "I" (Ireland), considering that "I" often has a tail at the bottom and a flourish at the top of the character.  In the Channel Islands entries, Y = born on the Island, N = born on another of the Channel Islands, ENG = England and the other abbreviations are as above.  

 

The 1841 census rarely contains schedule numbers, so this column has also disappeared.  Column G (BK = Book No.) gives the book number within each piece.  The more modern microfilms now have this added to the piece number alongside the pages.  For example, in The National Archives’ film, Book 1 of Piece 1196 (Dudley) is shown as HO 107/1196/1.   Folio numbers in the 1841 census films do not run continuously right through the piece.  Instead, they begin again at Folio 1 for every book.  The Folio No. (FO) is therefore not enough on its own to identify an entry.   The Piece (PC), Book (BK) and Folio (FO) numbers are needed.  However, films available in other places do not necessarily have Book or Folio numbers.  To help readers using these, the transcript also provides Enumeration District (ED) and Page (P) numbers.  In straightforward Pieces, such as Dudley, there are two or three Enumeration Districts within every Book and they are numbered consecutively throughout the Piece.  For example, Book 1 consists of EDs 1 and 2, Book 2 EDs 3 and 4, the Piece ending with Book 17 (EDs 35 - 37) and Book 18 (Workhouse ED).   By contrast, some Pieces are far from simple, as they contain returns from different Registration Districts.  Take, for example, rural Worcestershire in HO 107/1197.  Here there are no less than five EDs each numbered "4" !   The explanation is that they fall within the Registration Districts of Bromsgrove, Droitwich, Kidderminster, Pershore and Kings Norton and can be found in Books 6, 11, 15, 16 and 21.  So, to refer just to Piece 1197, ED4, page 5, for example, would be unhelpful: the Book number needs to be given as well.

 

In the 1841 census, each enumerated item is supposedly one dwelling, marked off by a double diagonal line at the end of the entry.  A single diagonal line indicates a new family within the same dwelling.  Thus, one frequently finds one of these single lines separating a family from a lodger or servant.   Sometimes, it separates related people, such as father and son.  I have transcribed the whole entry for the house, regardless of whether there is a "family divider" line or not.  These "family divider" lines, have been introduced in a new column, at the left-hand side.  An oblique stroke in this column on the same line as a name indicates that the new family begins with that name.  Thus "/ BROWN James" after several rows of Whitehouses means that James Brown is the first member of another family within the same house. 

 

Because there are no schedule numbers for the 1841 census, one cannot tell from a normal type of transcript whether two enumerated items or dwellings are adjacent.  To combat this, a column L (the column heading "Vo” = vicinity order) has been included.  Here, arbitrary letters, A, B, C… show the order of dwellings which are on the same or the following page.   For example, suppose there are three Whitehouse dwellings on consecutive pages, one on each page.   Say that they are headed by John Whitehouse, William Whitehouse and James Smith (who employs Mary Ann Whitehouse as a servant).   Suppose that John appears near the foot of one page, the next dwelling does not contain any Whitehouse and then William Whitehouse's family follow on the next page.  John's is given the letter "A" and William's "C" (indicating that there is the non-Whitehouse item "B" between them).   Because there is a third Whitehouse entry, on the third page, this is included in the vicinity sequence.  This time, there are seven dwellings in between.  William's entry retains the letter "C", the seven in between are D, E, F, G, H, I and J, so James Smith's entry on the third page bears the letter "K".

 

The main use of the vicinity order is to determine adjacency, which might indicate a family relationship.   Another use is to point up high densities of the name in a particular area, which would lead one to be cautious in assuming that adjacent entries are related.   A third use is to enable the transcript to be sorted in the correct order, when two entries are on the same page.

 

The whole enumerated house is treated as one household and extracted if there is a Whitehouse anywhere within it.   The "household" numbering (HN) in column M is more correctly the enumerated item or dwelling numbering, as it runs through the whole entry to the end, marked by the double diagonal line in the census books, but omitted here.

 

In the 1841 census, the enumerators were supposed to use "m" (lower case) to represent "maker" and "M" (upper case) to denote manufacturer.  I have tried to follow the census literally and have used upper and lower case "M" and "m".  In practice, it has been difficult often to tell which case was intended and anyway the distinction is probably unreliable and not particularly helpful. 

   

 4.4 1891 CENSUS OF CANNOCK (STAFFS)

The 1891 census differs from the 1851 - 1881 censuses in that it has a column to show the number of rooms occupied if less than 5 and three columns to show employment status.  The indexed transcript here shows the number of rooms in the address column as 3R, 4R etc.  The three employment columns in the returns are 12 = employer, 13 = employee and 14 = neither of these, the last-mentioned being intended to show self-employment in a one-man business.  In this indexed transcript, the relevant number, 12, 13 or 14, has been added in the occupation column.


4.5 1911 ENGLAND, WALES, CHANNEL ISLANDS & ISLE OF MAN CENSUS

This census differs from the others in that the preserved records consist of the original schedules filled out by the householder or, if he had difficulty in reading and writing, someone acting on his behalf.

 

Because only the original schedules survive, there are far more names misspelt or abbreviated than in the earlier censuses.  To combat this, the forenames have been lightly “normalised”.  The normalisation has taken place as follows:

(1) where there is an obvious misspelling: for example, Elizibith and Lousia are rendered as Elizabeth and Louisa.

(2) where an abbreviated name has been used: for example, Chas, Tom and Wm, although a particular exception was made for Tom Salmon Whitehouse, as his names are as registered at birth and are distinctive.  Carrie, Fred, Florrie and Millie have been considered abbreviated names for Caroline, Frederick, Florence and Millicent and normalised. 

(3)  three other forenames:  Phoebe, Selina and Susannah, which have been rendered in several different spellings

(Pheobe, Phebey etc., Celina, Selena etc. and Susan(n)a).  However, Susan has been left un-normalised.

 

Examples of un-normalised names comprise Ann/Anna/Anne/Annie; Betsy/Betsey; Harriet with one “t” and Lizzie.

 

Wherever a name has been normalised, an entry “n” has been made in column C.

 

Where the forename is omitted in favour of a title, such as “Mrs”, recourse has sometimes been had to earlier censuses or other information to supply a name, this being considered more helpful than leaving just the title.

 

The age column has been moved, so as to follow the “condition” (single, married etc.) column.  This brings the format into line with that for the other censuses. 

 

The number of years of marriage, number of children born and the numbers thereof living and dead occupy four columns, as in the schedule.  Where the husband and wife are shown in a return, these four columns were supposed to be filled in against the wife’s name, but were often placed against the husband’s.  To ensure consistency, they have been moved to their correct position.  Sometimes, a widow or widower would enter this information and it has been retained in this indexed transcript, even when apparently struck out by a census official.  There is no intended difference between a blank and the figure 0:  whichever occurs in the schedule has been reproduced here.  “None” has been shown as “0”.

 

The 1911 census was not well designed.  The columns “Industry or Service...” and “Whether Employer, Worker or Working on Own Account” were very often not completed.  The officials used code numbers to complete the latter column, but these numbers have been ignored here.  “Employed” has been treated as “Worker”, abbreviated to “Wkr” in this WFHC indexed transcript.  The next column in the original schedule “Whether Working at Home” was frequently completed.  In the WFHC transcript, the column has been abolished and “at Home” added to the occupation, as in e.g. “Licensed Victualler at Home”, meaning that he lived on the premises.

 

In the birthplace column, several instances have been found in which the householder has listed the birthplace of the head of household and placed a dash under it for the ensuing members.  In most cases, this was probably meant to be a symbol for ditto, but considering that the same dash is evidently also used to indicate a blank or none, nothing has been assumed and the birthplace simply left blank.  As in the earlier censuses, the birthplace has been reproduced as it stands, e.g. as “B’ham”, not “Birmingham”.  In 1911 the householder has very often not troubled to complete the county and, as before, no attempt has been made to insert one or to correct an error in the stated county.  Where the town appears wrong or difficult to fathom, a “sic” note in square brackets has been included, as has been done in the earlier censuses.

 

The big difference between the 1911 and the earlier censuses is that the image of the original schedule is not referenced on its face by any piece and folio system.  To make the indexed transcript sortable, therefore, the residence as given in the bottom right-hand corner of the schedule is split into several columns and the address repeated against each person.  Where two or more households have the same address, they have been numbered arbitrarily “Hh1” “Hh2” etc., so as to keep all the members of each household together.

 

With the address being key for sorting purposes, the notes do not appear there, but in the occupation column. Where a street address is not given, the column is left blank, it being assumed that the place is too small for a street address to be necessary.  Generally, addresses are taken from beneath the signature on the schedule.  In a few cases, however, where the address seems inadequate, recourse has been had to the transcribed address in “FindMyPast” or to the Enumerator’s Address Schedule in “Ancestry”.  Obvious errors in the address have been corrected and efforts made to make sense of the street name.

 

In the London County area, the town was frequently omitted from the address or only the “compass-point” postal district such as “N”, “W”, “SW” was supplied.  In this transcript, streets have been looked up in a map (or, if no longer existing, searched on the internet) and a town or area of London County inserted in place of the postal district.

 

For ordinary households (not institutions), the original schedule normally gives the number of rooms.  In this column, NS means “not stated”, i.e. there is a blank in the rooms box in the original schedule.

 

The household numbering system used in the earlier census transcripts has been retained.  However, a departure for the 1911 census has been to enter a page and line number whenever an institution is transcribed or the household is a long one in which the Whitehouse is a servant in an inn or hotel or lodger in a lodging house etc.

 

The 1911 census aimed to identify those born abroad as British by parentage.  This resulted in a large number of householders deciding to enter themselves as British subjects even though born in the British Isles !   Nearly all the few born abroad professed themselves to be British subjects by parentage.  As a result, the WFHC transcript omits nationality except where foreign status is specifically mentioned, in which case it is added as a note.  The same column of the census wanted to know whether those born outside England and Wales were resident therein or merely visitors.  As no instances of visitors were encountered, no note has been made about this in the transcript.

 

No attempt has been made to include the name of the signatory, who is not necessarily the head of the household and sometimes not someone in it.  However, where the signature includes a forename and that forename is not in the “Name and Surname” column of the schedule (some people used initials only), it has been added.

 

4.6 1840 US CENSUS

This census, like its predecessors, names only the head of household and gives ages only as within ranges.  Although these seem severe limitations, it does have its uses to check the numbers of children, on the assumption that the rest of the household consists of spouse and children.  This assumption has been adopted in this transcript, the surname Whitehouse being simply repeated for all household members (except when it is known from another source that there is another surname involved).

 

Treatment of the surname follows the same rule as in the British censuses.  Thus, if the name appearing is not WHITEHOUSE, but, say, WHITEHOUS, it is shown in the Surname column as WHITEHOUSE, but noted under "Notes" as a variant.  This expedient has been adopted to ensure that the surname always sorts properly.  Where there is a doubt about whether the surname is WHITEHOUSE, it has been included.

 

Forenames have been transcribed in the same literal manner as for the British censuses.

 

The original 1840 US census entry shows occupations in summary form as the number of people engaged in various categories.  For example, the number “3” might appear under the heading “Agriculture”.  In this transcript, this number is not shown, but, instead, the occupation “Agriculture” has been distributed in the most sensible-looking way, working from the oldest to the youngest males (excluding those aged 0 to 5) and if the quota is not fulfilled in this way, adding “Agriculture” against the oldest female.

 

The household members have been kept together by referencing the film roll and page numbers provided by “Ancestry”, followed by the number of the row on that page (obtained by counting) and finally the household number.  The household number has been derived by listing the head as No. 1, wife as No. 2 and children in order of age range as Nos. 3 onwards.  Where there are male and female children in the same age range, the males have been listed first.

 

There are a great many columns in the 1840 census, for listing coloured people, slaves, those with specified disabilities and the number of white people aged 20 or over who cannot read and write.  All these items have been treated as “extras” and consigned to the “Notes” column of the transcript, the abbreviation CRW being used for the illiteracy column.  As with the occupations, the number of illiterates has been applied to individual household members in the most sensible way.

 

The Whitehouse FHC reference number follows the same practice as for the British censuses.  Thus, each genealogy registered with the WFHC is given a number.  The reference is given only in the first row of each household.  

 

In general terms (that is to say, relating to all US the census transcripts on this website), census referencing with the WFHC number is not necessarily complete, as it is sometimes difficult to identify entries relating to a particular tree.  Remember also that the first person in a household is not necessarily a Whitehouse.  A question mark is used for the more doubtful references.  If there is more than one reference number, some of which are more doubtful and others less so, semicolons are used to separate the more secure from the more doubtful.  References are assigned on the basis of reasonable probability (rather than beyond all reasonable doubt).  It is strongly recommended in the 1850 to 1880 censuses to call up the whole household by sorting first by Household Number alone, then sorting again by Piece, Folio and Schedule.

 

Because there are relatively few entries, the 1840 census transcript has been put onto the website in “household order”, that is to say sorted first by Household Number (HN) and then by Roll, Page and Row.  Obviously, it could  easily be re-sorted by forename and then state.

 

4.7  1850 -1880 US CENSUSES

The 1850 US census was the first to give all the household members and their occupations and exact ages.  It does not state the relationship between the head and the others in the household.  The birth place is that of the country (ENG = England) or State (see Section 3.2 above for a list of symbols).   The questions asked differ considerably from those of the 1840 census, but, again, there are “extras” inserted in the “Notes” column of the transcript.  The value of real estate is shown in dollars.  Those who were noted as having married during the census year ending on 1st June 1850 are listed here, as are those who attended school (Att Sch).  The census does not say how frequent an attendance was required !   The number of illiterates aged over 20 (CRW) in the household is noted against the head of household.

 

The 1860 US census is very similar to that for 1850, with the introduction of the name of the Post Office to better identify the place and with the addition of personal estate (PE) to real estate (RE).  For those who were born or married during the year, the month had to be noted (although sometimes it was not). 

 

The 1870 US census introduced further refinements. 

 

The illiteracy column was split into two, for those who could not read and those who could not write.   In the transcript, CRW denotes that both columns were marked, CW only the writing column.  A rare case of someone who could not read, but could write, resulted in CR, but that seems suspiciously like an enumeration error. 

 

The somewhat pompous heading “Constitutional Relations” resulted in nearly all men over 21 declaring themselves US citizens (USC).

 

Where father and mother are of foreign birth, this has been noted by the abbreviations FA fb, MO fb.

 

Welcome simplification arrived with the 1880 US census, since estate values were no longer required and the citizenship question was also dropped, but there was evidence of a new concern, since there was a question asking for how many months a person had been unemployed during the census year ending 1st June 1880. 

 

On the other hand, the birth place of one’s father and mother had to be stated.  Theoretically, it should be unnecessary to record this for children, but it was recorded and did not always agree with the birth places given for their parents. 

 

Where a couple married during the census year, this had to be recorded, but the month was no longer required.  On the other hand, the month of birth of a baby did have to be stated (but sometimes was not).

 

In all the 1850 - 1880 censuses, the household members have been kept together by referencing the film roll and page numbers provided by “Ancestry”, followed by the House Number (HO) and the Schedule Number (SCH) and finally the Household Number (HN), being the order of the people as they appear on the original census return.

They have been uploaded sorted by surname, forename and age.  To discover the WFHC reference of someone who is not a head of household, it is necessary to sort the file into household order.

   

In the 1880 census, the transcription of Whitehouses in institutions has been dealt with differently from that of the 1841 to 1881 British censuses: the Whitehouse is referenced directly to the page and line number, rather than being given a household number.

 

The following deviant versions of the Whitehouse name in the US census have been searched:  Mitchouse, Whilehouse, Whitch*, Whithans*, Whithaus*, Whithors*, Whithous*, Whitehans*, Whitehaus*, Whitehors*, Whitehous*, Wighthouse, and Witehous*, where * means any one or more letters ending the word.  The possible deviant Whiters, which gave 55 hits in the 1880 census, was not searched.  The names Whitehorn and Whitehorne, which are not considered deviants of Whitehouse, but can be the result of a misenumeration or mistranscription, were searched in the 1880 US census only, giving 244 hits.  All were examined except for 15 in Mississippi and 52 in Tennessee, but none was found to resemble Whitehouse.