NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Early Indicators of Later Work Levels, Disease, and Death

Robert W. Fogel, Larry T. Wimmer

NBER Historical Working Paper No. 38
Issued in June 1992
NBER Program(s):   DAE

This paper summarizes a collaborative project designed to create a public-use tape suitable for a prospective study of aging among a random sample of 39,616 men mustered into 331 companies of the Union Army. The aim of the project is to measure the effect of socioeconomics and biomedical factors during childhood and early adulthood on the development of specific chronic disease at middle and late ages, on labor force participation at these later ages, and on elapsed time to death. This paper surveys the nature of and quality of the data and data sources to be included in the study, discusses the characteristics of a subsample of recruits from 20 companies recently recruited, looks at questions of representativeness of Union Army recruits to the Northern white male population, and finally examines several issues involving questions of possible selection bias due to linkage failure.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/h0038

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