Mike Schneider/Associated Press
Genealogists and historians can get a microscopic look at sweeping historical trends when individual records from the 1950 census are released this week. Researchers view the records that will be released Friday as a gold mine, and amateur genealogists see it as a way to fill gaps in family trees. The records will be indexed into a searchable website. The digitized forms have information about household members' names, race, sex, age, address, occupation, hours worked in the previous week, salary, education, marital status and the country where their parents were born. The records couldn't be released for confidentiality reasons until 72 years after they were gathered by census takers knocking on every home in the U.S.