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Three perspectives on the fertility transition in the United States, 1850-1940

J. David Hacker, Binghamton University, State University of New York (SUNY)

This paper uses two sources and three methods to examine fertility decline and fertility differentials in the United States. The sources include the Utah Population database, a genealogical sample of families settling in nineteenth-century Utah, and the IPUMS microdata samples of the 1850-1940 population censuses. The methods include birth interval analysis of the genealogical database using event history methods, age-specific marital fertility analyses of the 1850-1940 census microdata samples using own-child methods, and cohort-parity analysis of the new, high density 1900 and 1910 census samples. The results of the three perspectives are compared for their usefulness in understanding fertility decline and differentials.

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Presented in Session 158: New perspectives on the historical fertility transition