Troutfelters, Troutfeathers, and Broad Searches of the Census at

Broad searches are fine as long as they work in a way that the researcher expects. That does not appear to be the case with a search I recently conducted of the 1850 census on

A “broad” search for Troutfelter in the 1850 census brought about ten results, including three with the spelling of Troutfeather. That’s fine, it is a reasonable variant.

1850 Census results at for “Troutfelter” as a broad search.

But what is interesting is that a “broad” search for Troutfeather only get three results: the Troutfeathers. It does not catch the same ten results that a broad search for Troutfelter did. It would seem that if Troutfelter catches Troutfeather as a broad search that Troutfeather should catch Troutfelter as a broad search.

1850 Census results at for “Troutfeather” as a broad search.

Just something I noticed.


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