“In February 1917 the Connecticut General Assembly directed Governor Marcus H. Holcomb “to procure certain information relative to the resources of the State,” especially about “men and materials available for use in the event of war.” Known as the Military Census, the most significant part was a manpower census of all male inhabitants over the age of sixteen taken in 1917-1918. However, additional surveys included such things as farms, crops, livestock, automobiles, doctors, nurses, and factories.”
Source: Unknown Author. (2/2002). CT State Library. In Research Guide To The Connecticut Military Census Of 1917. Retrieved 1/3/2008, from http://www.cslib.org/milcens.htm.
Prior to researching the Rzeszuts I had no idea CT had conducted a census in 1917. Seeing as how my Great-Grandfather Anthony Zesut was 21 when the census occurred I was fairly certain I’d find him in there somewhere.
I went to the CT State Library in Hartford to check out their microfilms and hopefully find Anthony’s record.
In order to find the actual Census information you first have to find the person in the Census index. Then, using the questionnaire number on the index card, locate the document on a different reel of film.
I located Anthony’s index card on the microfilm and printed the image. I also found Joseph in the index and surprisingly Kasper was there as well. I had figured Kasper to be too old to participate. The index card reels were of very low quality and the photocopies of the image reflect that.
As you can see the index numbers are barely legible where they are visible at all.
My next step was to find the microfilm reel with the actual photos of the completed questionnaires. Unfortunately I was only able to find Anthony’s. Click the below image to view Anthony’s 1917 CT State Military Census Questionnaire.
The info populated on the document is:
- Town Or City: Glastonbury Conn
- Date: 2/19/17
- Full Name: Anthony Zesut
- Post Office Address: Concord St. Glastonbury
- 1. What is your present Trade, Occupation or Profession? Polisher
- 2. Have you any experience in any other Trade, Occupation or Profession? None
- 3. What is your age? 22 Height? 5’10” Weight? 150
- 4. Are you married? Single? Widowed? Married
- 5. How many persons are dependent on you for support? 1
- 6. Are you a citizen of the United States? No
- 7. If not a citizen of the United States have you taken out your first papers? No
- 8. If not a citizen of the United States what is your nationality? Austria
- 9. Have you ever done any Military or Naval service in this or any other country? No
- 10. Have you any serious physical disability? No
- 11. Can you do any of the following: Ride a horse? No Handle a team? Yes Drive an automobile? Yes Ride a motorcycle? Yes Understand telegraphy? No Operate a wireless? No Any experience with a steam engine? No Any experience with electrical machinery? No Handle a boat, power or sail? No Any experience in simple coastwise navigation? No Any experience with High Speed Marine Gasoline Engines? No Are you a good swimmer? No
One of the more interesting things on this is that Anthony had yet to become a U.S. Citizen and had not even filed his first papers yet (Declaration Of Intent). I did end up finding some Naturalization documents which indicate he did eventually become a legal citizen. Those will be covered in a future post.
This document is also the first indication we have that he and Victoria are living on Concord St. Concord St. is not far from Naubuc St. where the family had been living when the 1910 Federal Census was reported.
His occupation is listed as “Polisher”. Later documents show that he was employed in 1917 at the Colt Firearms factory in Hartford as a Polisher.
I plan on going back to the CT State Library in Hartford to further search for Kasper and Joseph’s questionnaire. I’ll also need to get the information needed to properly cite the film reels I used.