Infographics: What Was Life Like in 1940?

Posted by Nick Cifuentes on August 23, 2012 in Content, Social Media

As you know, earlier this month, we completed the 1940 U.S. Census index on You can now look for a parent, grandparent—maybe even yourself—in every state and territory. In addition, we also created different infographics that creatively display each state and what life was like in 1940. See all the images below, and feel free to download, save, repost and share any of these images for your friends, family or just your own collection.



1 DebHAugust 23, 2012 at 1:54 pm

Sorry to put in off topic item but I couldn’t find ANYWHERE on support to report a problem with an image (other than adding corrections to census errors). All I saw were canned questions…nowhere to actually type a message. Hopefully someone from support will read this. Plesae note that the images that come up when browsing 1892 Boston, Massachusetts city directory are actually for the Polk 1948/1949 directory (check out the 1st page of “A”s and the title is clearly visible). Thanks.

2 Trevor ThackerAugust 23, 2012 at 1:57 pm

Deb, You can send a link to the image and a brief description of the problem to our Member Services team via email at

3 DebHAugust 24, 2012 at 6:07 am

Thanks Trevor. I’ll do that. I saw no reference at all to that email address while I searching for a way to report it.

4 Mississippi in 1940 « Granny HallAugust 26, 2012 at 6:25 am

[...] different infographics that creatively display each state and what life was like in 1940. (Click here to view the infographics all of the 50 states plus Puerto [...]

5 Connie CoxAugust 28, 2012 at 1:48 am

What a surprise for me. I thought I was in Florida with both of my parents but Mama is back in Atlanta working as a cashier in a department store. I am a year old and my sister is there too. Now I wonder where my aunt Frances Love is and her brother Robert Love Jr. is also missing. Now I am really curious.
I know that my grandfather committed suicide and maybe this is the time so my mother is living with my grandmother. I can’t find the death certificate for him or his father, a Civil War Veteran, Eugene E. Love. The secrets you find on Ancestry make for an interesting story of your own life.

6 Nitza MaldonadoAugust 30, 2012 at 1:34 pm

The 1940 Census for Puerto Rico are great. But I found that some of the records are not listing the correct Head of House. So the families are broken out into two separate census reports. I did report this on one of the census reports, hope it gets fixed soon. Otherwise, thank you for completing this. I was able to find my mother, even though the census taker spelled her name incorrectly, it was a very nice surprise.

[...] of the 1940 U.S. Census back in April, recently shared new infographics on its blog, “Ancestry’s Infographics: What Was Life Like in 1940?” There is a graphic for the each of the 48 states, plus U.S. territories. (Alaska and Hawaii [...]

8 CathySeptember 5, 2012 at 9:29 pm

Thanks for the share. I had a great time.

family trees

9 Leonard LorgeSeptember 28, 2012 at 5:20 pm

The ‘What was life like in 1940′ site is great, BUT the image of the time machine is very wrong. The front of the device shows screws with HEX heads, and in the 1940′s screws had a slotted head, as HEX screwdrivers were not in use then. Otherwise, really great!

10 Darlene8705October 8, 2012 at 12:31 pm

Must say that the individual state art is worth hanging in an art museum. The presentations are great summaries of the states. Thank you, Ancestry.Com, for creating these images.


11 Darlene8705October 8, 2012 at 12:41 pm

I notice there are representatioins for areas who were not states. Why dosen’t Alaska and Hawaii fall into this category?


12 Darlene8705October 8, 2012 at 12:43 pm

Where are the depictions of the territories Alaska and Hawaii?


13 Ram BabuDecember 22, 2012 at 1:13 am

thanks nick for sharing this very very informative photos , i can feel now , how really the LIFE was in 1940

14 Nelson GasparMay 15, 2013 at 1:28 pm

These are great illustrations!!!! Do you have the contact person/agency that did these?

Nelson |

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