The 1940 census was the first to include a statistical sample. Five percent of people were asked an additional 16 questions. In order to gauge the effect of the Great Depression on the nation's housing stock, a census of occupied dwellings was coupled with the usual demographic questions. Enumerators collected the following information, organized by column number:
- Street the person lives on
- House number
- Number of household in order of visitation
- Is the home owned or rented?
- Value of the home, if owned, or monthly rental, if rented
- Does the person's household live on a farm?
- Relationship with the head of household
- Color or race
- Age at last birthday
- Marital status
- Did the person attend school or college at any time in the past year?
- What was the highest grade of school that the person completed?
- Person's place of birth
- If foreign born, is the person a citizen?
In what place did the person live on April 1, 1935?
For persons who, on April 1, 1935 was living in the same house as at present, enumerators were to enter "same house" into column 17; they were to leave the rest of the columns in this section blank. For persons who lived in a different house, enumerators were to fill out the columns with information about their 1935 residence.
- City, town, or village
- For villages with fewer than 2,600 residents, and all unorganized places, enumerators were to enter "R."
- State or Territory
- Was this house on a farm?
For persons 14 years and older - employment status
- Was the person at work for pay or profit in private or nonemergency government work during the week of March 24 - 30?
- If not, was he at work on, or assigned to, public emergency work (WPA, NYA, CCC, etc.) during the week of March 24 - 30?
- If the person was neither at work or assigned public emergency work: was this person seeking work?
- If not seeking work, did he have a job or business?
- For persons answering "No" to questions 21, 22, 23, and 24; indicate whether engaged in home housework (H), in school (S), unable to work (U), or Other (Ot)
- If the person was at work in private or non emergency government employment: how many hours did he work in the week of March 24 - 30?
- If the person was seeking work or assigned to public emergency work: what was the duration, in weeks, of his unemployment?
- What is the person's occupation, trade, or profession?
- What is the person's industry or business?
- What is the person's class of worker?
- Number of weeks worked in 1939 (or equivalent of full time weeks)
- Amount of money, wages, or salary received (including commissions)
- Did this person receive income of more than $50 from sources other than money wages or salary?
- Corresponding number on the Farm Schedule of the person's farm
- Person's father's birthplace
- Person's mother's birthplace
- Person's mother or native tongue
Is this person a veteran of the United States military forces; or the wife, widow, or under-18-year old child of a veteran?
- If so enter "Yes"
- If the person is a child of a veteran, is the veteran father dead?
- War or military service
Enumerators were to mark "W" for World War I; "S" for the Spanish-American War, the Phillipine insurrection, or Boxer Rebellion; "SW" for both the Spanish-American War and World War I; "R" for peacetime service only; or "Ot" for any other war or expedition
For persons 14 years old and over
- Does this person have a federal Social Security number?
- Were deductions for federal Old-Age Insurance or railroad retirement made from this person's wages in 1939?
- If so, were deductions made from all, one-half or more, or less than one-half of the person's wages or salary?
- What is this person's usual occupation?
- What is this person's usual industry?
- What class of worker is this person?
For all women who are or have been married
- Has this person been married more than once?
- Age at first marriage
- Number of children ever born
The 1940 census was the first to include a separate questionnaire on the condition of the nation's housing stock. Unlike on the general population questionnaire, enumerators were required to check one of a series of options for each question, rather than write in a response. Organized by column number (and response options), enumerators collected the following information:
Census of Occupied Dwellings
Location and Household Data
- Number of structure in order of visitation by enumerator
Dwelling Unit number within structure
- Line number on the corresponding population questionnaire
Name of head of family
Street number and address
Apartment number or location
- Color or race of head
- All other races
- Number of persons in household
- Does this family live on a farm?
- What is this family's home tenure?
- Value of home of monthly rental (in dollars)
Estimated rent of owned non-farm home (in dollars)
II. Characteristics of Structure
- Type of structure in which this dwelling unit is located
- Structure without business
- 3-or-more-family structure without business (list number of units)
- Structure with business
- Other dwelling place
- Originally built as:
- Residential structure with the same current number of dwelling units
- Residential structure with a different from the current number of dwelling units
- Non-residential structure
- Exterior material
- Is the structure in need of major repair?
- Year originally built
- Number of rooms
- Water Supply
- Running water in dwelling unit
- Hand pump in dwelling unit
- Running water within 50 feet of dwelling unit
- Other supply within 50 feet of dwelling unit
- No water supply within 50 feet of dwelling unit
- Toilet facilities
- Flush toilet in structure, in exclusive use
- Flush toilet in structure, shared
- Non-flush toilet in structure
- Outside toilet or privy
- No toilet or privy
- Bathtub or shower with running water in structure
- Exclusive use
- Principle lighting equipment
- Principle refrigeration equipment
- Radio in dwelling unit?
- Heating equipment
- Steam or hot water system
- Piped warm air system
- Pipeless warm air furnace
- Heating stove
- Other or none
- Principal fuel used for heating
- Coal or coke
- Fuel Oil
- Principal fuel used for cooking
- Coal or coke
- Is furniture included in the cost of rent?
- Estimated cost of rent without furniture (in dollars)
- Average monthly cost of...
- Other fuel
- Value of property (in dollars)
Number of dwelling units on property
- Is there a mortgage on the property?
- Present debt
On 1st mortgage (in dollars)
On 2nd mortgage (in dollars)
- Are Regular payments required...
- On another regular payment plan?
- On no regular payment plan
Amount of each payment (in dollars)
- Do payments include an amount for the reduction of principal?
- Do payments include real estate taxes?
- Interest rate now being charged (in percentages)
- Holder of the first mortgage (or land contract)
- Building and loan
- Commercial bank
- Savings bank
- Life insurance company
- Mortgage company
- Home Owner's Loan Corporation