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Coverage of the Hispanic Population of the United States in the 1970 Census: A Methodological Analysis

Written by:
Report Number P23-82

This report describes in detail the problems encountered and methodology used in attempting to evaluate the census coverage of the Hispanic population.

Charts show data on observed and expected sex ratios for the White, Black-and-other races, and Spanish-origin populations, by type of Spanish origin and age; and percent net undercount in 1970 for various subgroups of the Hispanic population as a function of the assumed ratio of undercount rates for the subgroups in 1960 to undercount rates for the Black-and-other races population in 1960.

Detailed tables show data as follows: Hispanic population according to various identifiers; conspiracy of responses to the Spanish-origin question as measured by reinterview studies and the Current Population Survey; proportion of persons of Spanish origin with Spanish surnames, by type of Spanish origin; and proportion of persons with Spanish surnames of Spanish origin; and percent of blended population with ages ending in each terminal digit 0 to 9 Myers' summary index of heaping, for the Spanish-origin, White, and Black populations.

Included also are data on age ratios and age-accuracy indexes for the Spanish-origin, Spanish-surname, White (corrected), and Black (corrected) populations; deviation of census survival rates from life table survival rates; age-specific and age-adjusted death rates for the Spanish-surname population of Texas and expectation of life at birth. Also included are preferred estimates of the percents of net undercount of the population; estimates of bicensal relative error for the population of Puerto Rican birth or parentage, using sample survey data and census data for the age-sex distribution of migrants; estimates of bicensal relative error for the native population of Mexican parentage; immigrants of Cuban birth by type of admission; and illustrative estimates of the percents of net census error for the population of Cuban birth by year of entry in the United States.

The text provides information on methods of coverage evaluation, alternative definitions of the Hispanic population and implications for coverage evaluation, applications of coverage evaluation methods, and prospects for measuring the coverage of the Hispanic population.

A Note on Language

Census statistics date back to 1790 and reflect the growth and change of the United States. Past census reports contain some terms that today’s readers may consider obsolete and inappropriate. As part of our goal to be open and transparent with the public, we are improving access to all Census Bureau original publications and statistics, which serve as a guide to the nation's history.

Page Last Revised - October 8, 2021
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