The TRA Survey is based on the systematic reconstitution of the trajectories and the descendants of all individuals whose last name begins with the letters TRA in order to build a representative nationwide sample of the French metropolitan population.
The TRA Survey draw on a core of historical sources that have been systematically collected: marriage records and tables of deceased and missing individuals. Many other sources can be added to the project, enhancing the databases while at the same time benefitting from what the project has to offer as it stands. The military registers are an example of a recent addition to the survey.
The TRA project provides key data on the social, demographic and economic evolution of France. It allows then to shed new light on considerable swathes of contemporary history and can be used to find out more about the social mechanisms and structures inherent to transformations in French society over the long term.
The TRA survey should be appropriated and approached as a tool that, far from being complete, exists to be improved and enriched. Indeed, it constitutes a common matrix for extensive work on a range of topics, both qualitative and quantitative.