Sunday, June 10, 2012

Census Sunday: Mary Sudie Rucker


A picture of a picture of Sudie Rucker
in the possession of Mary Jollette Slade Pollock

Last week I looked in the 1940 census for my maternal grandfather’s mother (my great-grandmother) Mary Frances Jollett Davis. This week, I found my maternal grandmother’s mother, Mary Susan “Sudie” Eppard Rucker.

425 Fourth Street, Shenandoah, Virginia
Image from Google Maps
Grandma Rucker was the informant answering Mrs. Zola C. Brown’s questions on April 15, 1940.  She was living at 425 Fourth Street in Shenandoah, Virginia, the same house she had lived in during 1935 and many years before that even, and the same house she was living in at her death in 1958.  Her home was valued at $8000.  A widow age 62, she was the head of the household.  Her youngest son Joseph Calhoun Rucker, Jr. (28) and his wife Janice (26) lived there too along with their daughter Joan (6) as they had in 1935. 

Grandma Rucker and Uncle Joe had completed only seven years of school.  Janice had completed four years of high school.

Click to enlarge

This is the hosiery mill but Janice is not in this picture.
However, my grandmother Lucille Rucker Davis (Joe's sister
and Janice's sister-in-law) is the first person on the left kneeling.




Uncle Joe, while listed as a clerk for the Post Office, had not worked at all the last week of March 1940, and apparently had been unemployed for 72 weeks earning no income in 1939.  However, Janice had worked 48 hours the last week of March as a legger for the hosiery mill.  In fact, she had been employed throughout 1939 and earned $832.  She was probably lucky to have a steady job, but still her salary was well below the national average of $1299. 

Grandma Rucker claims to have received some income other than through a salary; however, the census does not indicate what that source was. Perhaps she received a pension from her deceased husband’s employment with the railroad.


12 comments:

  1. You do have such an interesting family.

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  2. It's amazing what people can find out about the past, if only they know where to look.

    Happy Sunday!

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    1. The 1940 Census is quite interesting with all its detail. When I filled out the 2010 census, I was disappointed with how little it asked. It'll be a letdown for future family historians and genealogists.

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  3. You are really getting lots of info from the 1940 Census. I've found if you have addresses you are in luck in finding folks. I'm having to wait for Georgia, Texas and Tennessee to be completed before finding out much as I don't have locations. Sudie's portrait is wonderful...the hairpin is so telling of the time, and of course having a house photo of relatives is a prize.

    Thanks for visiting and commenting on my Welcome June post. I've been busy on ancestry.com detailing out profiles as I'm getting ready to install Family Tree 2012 on my PC and start the transfer of info. See ya again soon. Enjoying your blog and family stories.

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    1. That's so funny that you mentioned the hairpin. My sister has that hairpin, fittingly because she looks so much like Sudie Rucker it's spooky -- would make you a believer in reincarnation.

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  4. Isn't it cool how people took work photos? My mom has one from the metal company she worked with long ago. I do take staff photos because I work at a school...and I have 27 class photos all in order in an album...you have made me think that someday I may be posted on someone's blog. Can you tell me how you get the cencus information? Where do you look?
    Happy Sunday!

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    1. You can look at census records free at FamilySearch.org. Just enter the name you're looking for and you'll be given various options to narrow your search by residence or birth or family members, etc. If you're looking for 1940, you need to know that not all states are indexed yet, so that information may or may not be readily available. If your state is not indexed, you can still find an ancestor if you know their enumeration district in 1930 or their address in 1940 (stevemorse.org). Let me know if you need more help finding someone.

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  5. It is funny that Grandma and Janice both were able to find work. Janice probably missed the picture after working 48 hours, bless Janice's heart!

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    1. HA -- maybe Janice took the picture.

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  6. Great stuff Wendy! The photos are wonderful. Don't ya just love all the details the 1940 census gives us about our families' lives? It's amazing!

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    1. Hi Jana, Yes, I LOVE the 1940 census. I'm learning things I would never have asked anyone like the value of their home, their level of education, and certainly who would ask how many hours someone worked??? The 1940 census is a wonderful little window into our ancestors' daily lives.

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