Questions on Census
For the 1930 census, the population questionnaire was basically the same as it had been in 1910 and 1920.
The biggest change was in racial classification. Enumerators were instructed to no longer use the "Mulatto" classification. Instead, they were given special instructions for reporting the race of interracial persons.
A person with both White and Black lineage was to be recorded as Black, no matter fraction of that lineage. A person of mixed Black and American Indian lineage was also to be recorded as Black, unless he was considered to be "predominantly" American Indian and accepted as such within the community.
A person with both White and American Indian lineage was to be recorded as an Indian, unless his American Indian lineage was very small and he was accepted as white within the community. In fact, in all situations in which a person had White and some other racial lineage, he was to be reported as that other race. Persons who had minority interracial lineages were to be reported as the race of their father.
For the first and only time, "Mexican" was listed as a race. Enumerators were to record all persons who had been born in Mexico or whose parents had been born in Mexico and who did not fall into another racial category as "Mexican."
Enumerators collected the following information, listed by column number:
1. Street the enumerated person lives on
2. House number of enumerated person (in cities and towns)
3. Number of dwelling house in order of visitation by enumerator
4. Number of family in order of visitation by enumerator
6. Relationship to head of family
7. Is the person's home owned or rented?
8. If the home is owned, is it owned free or mortgaged?
9. Does this person live on a farm NOW?
10. Did this person live on a farm A YEAR AGO?
12. Color or Race
Enumerators were to enter "W" for white, "Neg" for black, "Mex" for Mexican, "In" for American Indian, "Ch" for Chinese, "Jp" for Japanese, "Fil" for Filipino, "Hin" for Hindu, and "Kor" for Korean. All other races were to be written out in full.
14. Is the person single, married, divorced, or widowed?
15. Has the person attended school at any time since Sept. 1, 1929?
16. Can the person read and write?
17. Person's place of birth
18. Person's father's place of birth
19. Person's mother's place of birth
20. Year of immigration into the United States
21. Is the person naturalized or an alien?
22. Is the person able to speak English?
23. Trade, profession, or particular kind of work done?
24. Industry or business in which at work
25. Is person an Employee (E), wage or salary worker (W), or own account (O)?
26. Whether the person is actually at work?
27. Record line number for unemployed
28. Whether the person is a veteran of the U.S. military or naval forces mobilized for any war or expedition?
29. If yes, which war or expedition?
Enumerators were to enter "WW" for World War I, "Sp" for the Spanish-American War, "Civ" for the Civil War, "Phil" for the Phillipine insurrection, "Box" for the Boxer rebellion, or "Mex" for the Mexican expedition.
30. Number of farm schedule
Census of Unemployment
Enumerators were instructed to fill out an additional questionnaire for all gainful workers who were not at work the on the workday before enumeration. This special schedule collected the following information, organized by column number:
1. Date of enumeration
2. Sheet number of person's corresponding population schedule entry
3. Line number of person's corresponding population schedule entry
5. Does this person usually work at a gainful occupation?
6. Does this person usually have a job of any kind?
If this person has a job...
7. How many weeks since he has worked at that job?
8. Why was he not at work yesterday (or the last regular workday)?
Enumerators were instructed to be as specific as possible. A list of examples provided to enumerators included: "sickness," "was laid off," "voluntary lay-off," "bad weather," "lack of materials," "strike," etc.
9. Does he lose a day's pay by not being at work?
10. How many days did he work last week?
11. How many days does he work in a full-time week?
If this person has no job of any kind...
12. Is he able to work?
13. Is he looking for a job?
14. For how many weeks has he been without a job?
15. Reason for being out of a job
Enumerators were instructed to be as specific as possible. A list of examples provided to enumerators included: "plant closed down," "sickness," "off season," "job completed," "machines introduced," "strike," etc.
Supplemental Schedule for Indian Population
The additional questions asked of American Indians were much less numerous than in past censuses. The following information, listed by column number, was collected:
1. Sheet number of person's corresponding population schedule entry
2. Line number of person's corresponding population schedule entry
6. Is the person of full American Indian or mixed lineage?
8. Person's Post Office address
9. Agency where the person is enrolled