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Data Dictionary: Census 1960 (US, County & State)
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Table: T51. Nativity [3]
Universe: Total Population
Table Details
T51. Nativity
Universe: Total Population
Variable Label
Relevant Documentation:
Excerpt from: U.S. Bureau of the Census. U.S. Census of Population: 1960. Subject Reports, Nativity and Parentage. Final Report PC(2)-1A. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 1965.
Nativity, Parentage, and Country of Origin
This report presents data on the nativity and parentage of the total population and the country of origin of the' foreign stock. These data were derived from answers to the questions on the Household Questionnaire shown in the next column.
The information on place of birth is used to classify the population into two major groups: Native and foreign born.
This category comprises persons born in the United States, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or a possession of the United States. Also included in this category is the small number of persons who, although they were born in a foreign country or at sea, have at least one native American parent. Persons whose place of birth was not reported are assumed to be native unless their census report contains contradictory information, such as an entry of a language spoken prior to coming to the United States.

The native population is further classified on the basis of the country of origin of parents into the two groups, native of native parentage and native of foreign or mixed parentage, described below.
Information on place of birth of the native population is published in the 1960 report PC(2)-2A, State of Birth.

Foreign born
This category comprises all persons not classified as native. Therefore, this group includes persons who reported a foreign country as their place of birth (with the exception stated above) and those persons with place of birth not reported who answered the question on language spoken prior to coming to the United States.

Table A - Characteristics of the Population, by Nativity: 1960



Foreign born
Native parentage Foreign or mixed parentage
Total White
Male Female Male Female Male Female Male Female
Total, all ages 71,707,086 73,568,147 62,271,351 63,487,912 11,835,630 12,476,657 4,760,464 4,977,691
Median age 23.5 25.1 23.7 25.3 42.2 43.2 57.7 56.6
14 years old and over 46,266,627 48,996,641 40,410,877 42,482,370 10,520,534 11,213,020 4,528,201 4,751,528
Median years of school completed 10.6 11.1 10.9 11.5 10.9 11.1 8.4 8.5
Percent employed 69.9 32.7 70.9 31.9 78.4 34.4 63.4 27.0
MARITAL STATUS                
Percent 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0
Single 27.5 20.7 27.1 20.5 18.3 15.3 14.3 9.6
Married 67.4 65.7 68.1 66.5 76.4 69.3 74.8 62.4
Widowed 2.8 10.7 2.6 10.2 3.3 12.7 9.0 25.8
Divorced 2.2 3.0 2.1 2.9 2.0 2.6 1.9 2.2
OCCUPATION GROUP                
Employed, total 32,346,602 16,033,043 28,652,001 13,564,292 8,250,438 3,854,796 2,869,915 1,284,462
Percent 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0
White-collar workers 33.2 53.4 36.1 60 41.4 61.7 33.2 41.9
Blue-collar workers 52.3 38.3 50.2 32.3 50.9 34.1 58.2 53.0
Farm workers 9.1 1.8 8.8 1.5 5.7 1.3 6.2 1.3
Occupation not reported 5.4 6.5 5 6.1 2 2.9 2.4 3.8

Native of native parentage
This category comprises native persons both of whose parents are also natives of the United States. Data for this group are shown for the total and white population.
Native of foreign or mixed parentage
This group consists of native persons, one or both of whose parents are foreign born. The rules for determining the nativity of parents are substantially the same as those for determining the nativity of the persons enumerated. A limited amount of data is presented separately for the three groups comprising this category; namely, native of foreign parentage (that is, native with both father and mother foreign born), native of mixed parentage-father (but not mother) foreign born, and native of mixed parentage-mother (but not father) foreign born.
Foreign Stock
The foreign-born population is combined with the native population of foreign or mixed parentage in a single category termed the "foreign stock." This category comprises all first and second generation Americans. Third and subsequent generations are described as "native of native parentage." Age data for the total foreign stock are presented in this report in table 14; all other data for the foreign stock are classified by nativity.
Country of Origin
In this report, persons of foreign stock are classified according to their country of origin, with separate distributions shown for the country of birth of the foreign born and the parents' country of birth for the native of foreign or mixed parentage. Native persons of foreign parentage whose parents were born in different countries are classified according to the country of birth of the father.

The question on place of birth and parents' birthplace specified that country of birth be reported according to international boundaries as recognized by the United States at the time of the census. (See excerpt from questionnaire above.) Because of the many changes in boundaries that have occurred over the past hundred years in the areas from which the major segment of the foreign stock _have emigrated, it is reasonable to expect that these instructions may not have been followed in all instances. Some misreporting of place of birth by persons ignorant of boundary changes, as well as by persons of illegal immigration status, most likely exists. Although no specific evidence can be cited for 1960, on the basis of data from the Post Enumeration Survey for 1950, it was estimated that the same country of- birth was obtained in the census and the survey for approximately 90 percent of the foreign-born persons properly included in the 1950 Census.

Table B. Median Age of the Foreign Born, for the United States, 1960, and of the Foreign-Born White, for Conterminous Untied States, 1950 and 1940, By Selected Country of Origin

Country of birth Total foreign born, 1960 Foreign-born white
Median age Percent white 1950 19401
Total 257.2 95.4 56.1 50.9
United Kingdom 56.8 99.7 356.9 53.9
Ireland 59.3 99.9 58.3 54.7
Norway 64.8 100 61.8 56.3
Sweden 67.5 99.9 63.6 58.0
Germany 52.8 99.7 57. 3 56.6
Austria 63.5 99.9 58.4 51.1
Poland 62.2 99.9 57.5 49.9
Czechoslovakia 62.6 99.9 58.5 52.2
Hungary 60.4 99.9 (4) 50.9
Yugoslavia 58.7 99.9 (4) 50.0
Lithuania 65.6 99.9 (4) 51.8
Finland 66.5 99.9 (4) 53.2
U.S.S.R 62.9 99.8 557.5 49.4
Italy 60.8 99.956.5 48.8
Canada 50.4 98.9 49.6 69.5
Mexico 42.8 99.4 44.0 40.3

1Based on 5-percent sample.
2Median age of the foreign-born white was 57.6; not available by country of origin.
3England and Wales;.
4 Not available.
5Excludes persons reported as of Ukrainian origin.

Comparability of the Data
In this century, nativity and parentage data have been available for the total population from the 1900 and 1960 Censuses only; for intervening censuses, tabulations were made for only the white population. In order to permit historical comparisons, a number of tables in this report are shown for both the total and the white population.

Historically most of the immigrants to the United States were from European countries, and, therefore, only a small proportion of the immigrants were non-white. With the decline in immigration this situation has been changing, as is reflected in the increasing proportion of nonwhites in the foreign-born population (table C).

Table C. Foreign-Born Population, Total and Nonwhite, For Conterminous United States: 1900 To 1960

Census year Total Nonwhite
Number Percent
1960 9,661,028 381,709 4.0
1950 10,347,395 251,980 2.4
1940 11,594,896 175,758 1.5
1930 14,204,149 220,744 1.6
1920 13,920,692 207,938 1.5
1910 13,515,886 170,341 1.3
1900 10,341,276 127,459 1.2

Besides the inclusion of the foreign nonwhite stock, there are other inconsistencies between 1960 and earlier censuses. The general method of processing the returns for country of origin was the same for the 1950 and 1960 Censuses; however, a slight variation was introduced in the handling of entries of Austria-Hungary. In 1950, the technique of assigning a specific country for entries of Austria-Hungary depended on the surname. In 1960, a question on mother tongue was asked of all foreign-born persons and the allocation to a specific country was made on the basis of the language reported. For example, persons reporting Rumanian were classified as born in Rumania. For blanks on mother tongue, a system was devised to allocate the entries of Austria-Hungary in the coding operation on the basis of the distribution of nationalities of migrants from the Austro-Hungarian Empire as reported in the 1920 Census report, Volume II, Population. It appears that, as a result of these revisions in the coding procedures, the apparent understatement in the number of persons of Yugoslavian origin, which was evident in the data for 1950, does not exist in the published 1960 statistics. The change in the method of processing entries of Austria-Hungary combined with the improvements resulting from self- enumeration may have been responsible for the better coverage. (For additional information on these data see the text in Volume I, Characteristics of the Population, Part 1, United States Summary.)

The distinction between Canada-French and Canada- Other was not maintained in the collection and publication of 1960 data on country of origin. Data for 1960 for persons of Canadian origin are comparable with the sum of the categories Canada-Other and Canada-French from earlier censuses.

Prior to 1950, questions on citizenship and mother tongue were used, when feasible, to assign entries on nativity and country of origin where these entries were omitted or uncodable. In the 1950 Census the question on mother tongue was excluded; in 1960, this question was asked of the foreign born, but citizenship was not asked. Data for 1960 on mother tongue are to be presented in the forthcoming report PC(2)-1E, Mother Tongue.

Quality of Data
The classification by country of origin appears to be consistent with the expected values based on an examination of past censuses. In countries where the same boundaries have been maintained over a long period of time, the classification by country of origin appears to be reasonable.

The data seem to indicate that a completely accurate count of the foreign stock from areas in which there had been considerable boundary changes after World War I may not have been achieved. An example of such a problem is found in the reporting of Austria- Hungary as place of birth. A discussion of the technique designed to handle such entries is given above in the section on "Comparability of the data."

Changes from 1940 to 1950 and from 1950 to 1960 in the foreign stock from Ireland (Eire), Northern Ireland, and, consequently, the United Kingdom seem to reflect errors in reporting rather than actual changes in the numbers in each category. Because of the omission from the schedule of any instruction to distinguish Northern Ireland and Ireland (Eire) in 1950, the number of persons of foreign stock from Northern Ireland was apparently underreported to a considerable degree in that census and that from Ireland, correspondingly overreported. The reinstated special caution relating to this point on the 1960 questionnaire resulted in a very different and probably more correct distribution between the two countries. The foreign born from Northern Ireland increased by 340 percent and those from Ireland decreased by 33 percent between 1950 and 1960. Similar changes occurred for native persons of Irish parentage. The decline in the foreign stock from the United Kingdom between 1950 and 1960 undoubtedly would have been greater had it not been affected by the spurious increase in the figure for Northern Ireland.