Column: Decoding the 1921 Canada Census

Between today and Saturday, my genealogy column, Roots to the Past, is available in the following Atlantic Canada newspapers:

Tuesday: The Kings County Record (Sussex)

Wednesday: The Lunenburg County Progress Bulletin

Thursday: The Western Star (Corner Brook)

Saturday: The Citizen (Amherst)

Saturday: Times & Transcript (Moncton)

Title: Decoding the 1921 Canada Census

Snippet: The 1921 Canada Census has been accessible to Canadians for free for several weeks at ( After viewing dozens of pages, transcribing a few communities and sorting out family members, I took time to learn more about the history of the census and what the information means in each column.

The sixth Canadian census recorded much of the same information found in previous returns: name, marital status, age, relationship to the head of the household, religion and place of birth. It did not record date of birth, but it did gather new data not found in earlier censuses.

The tenure and class of home in which the family dwelled was a new addition to the form. It shows if the house was owned or rented (column 6), and if rented the amount paid per month (7). It also reveals the class of home (8), materials of construction (9) and rooms occupied by the family (10).

. . . To read more, pick up one of the above noted newspapers.

2 thoughts on “Column: Decoding the 1921 Canada Census

  1. I agree Diane. The markings on the 1921 Census really make it difficult to read. Also, I wish they had printed the info. While the beautiful scrolling penmanship in nice, sometimes it’s had to decifer an “r” from an “m” etc.

    • Bill, I love fancy handwriting…unless I’m the one left to decipher it. I agree; they should have printed. Some enumerators did, but I’m like you and have discovered very illegible handwriting.

      Thank you for commenting.

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