Census leaves a footprint for your descendants to find

Deb Naylor

ALPENA — The census is about more than congressional seats or state and federal allocations.

It’s about leaving a footprint.

With the 2020 census well underway, local and state officials encourage Michiganders to make sure they’re counted because data collected through the census is used to determine how state and federal money is doled out, how many seats Michigan gets in Congress, and how legislative districts are carved up.

But, in partnership with the Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan and the Alpena County Library, The News aimed to illustrate another, more personal role census records play in our lives: Just as we use census records in genealogy to help us track down long-lost relatives and fill out our family tree, someday, our descendants may use the census records gathered this year to track us down.

To help document the point, The News asked locals who have used census and other records to track down their descendants to share their stories. You can find some of those stories and more in the videos below:


For more information on the 2020 census:

* 2020Census.gov

* Michigan Be Counted

* Census 2020: Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan


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