You can search the 1950 US Census!

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Searching the 1950 US Census will be an awkward and cumbersome search until every field is indexed. But you can give it a try.

Be sure you to navigate to the search page:  https://1950census.archives.gov/search

The 1950 US Census NARA Search Page



The search has limited features that include: name, state, county and enumeration district. You do not have to enter search terms any field. For example, you can leave the county or the enumeration district blank.

1950 US Census Search Inputs


If you cannot see the population schedule sheet for the search result on the right, click on “Population Schedule” to see the actual census sheet.

Of course I had better luck in small towns with families having unique names. Just as in any census, try to search for unusual family names. I have even had some success searching boroughs of New York City.

How about a quick hands-on exercise to find a name on the census? I have a simple example using my favorite poet, Ogden Nash.


Name: Frederick Ogden Nash
State: Maryland

1950 US Census Search fields for Ogn Nash


The first result on the right-hand side, listed Odgen Nash (rather than Frederick Ogden Nash) and showed him with his wife Frances, and his children Linell and Isabel. Note: this result came up without entering a county or enumeration district.

Ogden Nash search result in 1950 US Census

On the bottom of each search result is the “Machine Learning (AI) Extracted Names” section that can help by showing you the names that appear on the same census sheet. The AI-generated indexing was surprising to me because it does try to offer alternate spellings of names.

Odgen Nash and family in 1950 US Census

To download the sheet, click on the three dots that appear under “Help Us To Transcribe Names” to see the option to download the sheet.

Option to download

Only the first entry is expanded. If your family member is in one of the other entries, click on “Population Schedule” to see the actual page of the census.

Multiple results (unexpanded)

And the population schedule for that result will expand. (Only one population schedule sheet will appear in the results on the right at one time.)

Expanded Population Schedule

I have posted a short video on our YouTube channel with the example search in action at: https://youtu.be/rLgq2nqNmbA

Let me know how you do.