I’m writing this post with a brief request. Does anyone know of a good dataset of median incomes for all US households and/or families going back before World War II? What about median income of households just going back to the 1940s? I’ve found census data (e.g. in the 2010 Statistical Abstract), but it either doesn’t go back before the 1960s, or else it only tracks families. As far as I can tell, for the Census you are only a family if you are 2 or more related people living together. There are millions more households than families, and I can’t quite figure out what’s going on with that. Does anyone have a quick answer? Moreover, the CBO has excellent data on post-tax income taking into account government transfers (e.g. here) but the data only go back to 1976, and they report it in terms of quintiles rather than the median.
Long story short: is there an authoritative dataset of historical median income in the United States? If so, where?