Search billions of records on


Madison County Genealogical Society

Minutes of the Meeting - June 11, 2009


The June 11, 2009, meeting of the Madison County Genealogical Society was held at the Edwardsville Public Library in Edwardsville, Illinois.

President, Robert Ridenour, called the meeting to order.


In the absence of our Treasurer LaVerne Bloemker, Secretary Barbara Hitch presented the financial report for the month of May 2009.

Librarian Elsie Wasser reported that we had received several new items for the library from member, Lynn Reener:

Prairie Pioneers of Illinois, Vol II - Illinois State Genealogical Society

Family Bible Records, Vol II Illinois State Genealogical Society

Children of the Orphan Trains, compiled by Janet Coble - Illinois State Genealogical Society

Early German Churches (bef 1900) of Illinois - Illinois Chapter, Palatines to America 1989

First Families of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Vol 2, by John Pitts Launey

Pioneers of the Six Bulls, The Newton County, Missouri, Saga, Vol XXVI, Part 4, by Larry James 1984

Kincaid, The Family of John Kincaid Sr 1710-1811 and Kincaids of the Carolinas and Virginia

Diary of Johann Gottfried Arends, 1740-1807 by Jo White Linn

The Marionville Turrentines by Ethel Turrentine Hook

Madison County, Illinois, 1820 Federal Census by Phyllis Bauer

The Families of Ahrend Ahrens Janssen and Antje Tonjessen Janssen

St. Timothy United Methodist Church, 1850-2000, Litchfield, Illinois

June Meeting

On June 11, 2009, Ms. Elsie Wasser gave a presentation on Census Records of the United States Over the Years. The first thing Elsie did was to recommend the "Guide to Genealogical Research in the National Archives of the United States" as a valuable source book for anything pertaining to census records.

She explained the requirements and purposes for taking a census and stated that the census records have turned out to be a vital source of genealogical information about our ancestors and the details of their lives.

Elsie stated that errors were introduced into the census data through actions of both the enumerators and the public, i.e., phonetic spelling of names, asking neighbors for information, people giving the wrong ages. She said that each federal census has been different. Questions have been added or removed, more details have been requested, etc..

For the sake of privacy, the actual census records have been restricted and not available to the general public for 72 years after the taking of the census. The 1930 census was made available April 1, 2002 and the 1940 census will be available April 1, 2012.

Elsie also talked about other censuses: Mortality census reports the deaths of individuals the year before the taking of the actual census. Agricultural censuses give details of persons whose livelihood depends on agriculture. These two types of federal censuses exist only for the years 1850, 1860, 1870, and 1880. In addition to the federal censuses, there are state censuses. Illinois took a state census in 1845, 1855, and 1865.

This presentation was well received and prompted several questions.