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Customer Review

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not quite as expert as I had expected, 4 Jan. 2012
This review is from: Census: The Expert Guide (Paperback)
There are various reasons why people cannot be found in the censuses, sometimes because they were not enumerated, sometimes because they were incorrectly enumerated, and in other cases because they were enumerated in a non-standard format. The latter mainly applies to people in institutions, such as workhouses and lunatic asylums, who were often not enumerated under their full name, but under first initial and surname or just initials. After discovering this (long before reading this book), I was able to find an individual in a lunatic asylum (as they were called at the time) in one of the censuses listed only under their initials, who I had previously been unable to find. However, there seems to be no information on this topic in this book, and there are no entries for 'lunatics' or 'lunatic asylums' (or their modern 'politically correct' equivalents) in the index.

Although this is a detailed description of the censuses from 1841-1911, there is perhaps too much detail on the characterisitcs of various online services (which very soon gets out of date) and insufficient or no information on how the various censuses dealt with 'unusual cases' that can result in people not being found (the criteria for which varied from one census to another) such as soldiers, sailors, merchant seamen, pauper lunatics and inmates of workhouses. This book is a good comprehensive introduction to the censuses, and the online services that were available at the time the book was published, but cannot really be described as 'the expert guide'.
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Location: London, UK

Top Reviewer Ranking: 2,369