This study is maintained and distributed by the Health and Medical Care Archive (HMCA). HMCA is the official data archive of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Pathways to Adulthood: A Three-Generation Urban Study, 1960-1994: [Baltimore, Maryland] (ICPSR 2420)

Principal Investigator(s):


This collection incorporates both prospective and retrospective data on three generations of families initially living in inner-city Baltimore, Maryland. The prospective data were selected from data collected as part of the Johns Hopkins Collaborative Perinatal Study (JHCPS), a survey of pregnant women seeking prenatal care and delivery at Johns Hopkins Hospital during 1960-1964. JHCPS studied these women (the first-generation mothers, abbreviated as G1) and the children born to them during 1960-1965 (the second-generation children, abbreviated as G2) until the children were 8 years old. The retrospective data come from a follow-up study, conducted in 1992-1994, of G1, G2, and the children born to G2 (the third-generation children, abbreviated as G3). Data from JHCPS on G1 include obstetrical and reproductive history at registration for prenatal care, sociological/family history variables at or around delivery of G2, observations of mother with child when G2 was 4 months old and 8 months old, and family history, demographic, and sociological variables when G2 was age 7. For G2, the data from JHCPS include delivery room observations at birth, pediatric examination data at age 4 months, developmental evaluation data at age 8 months, pediatric-neurological examination data at age 12 months, language, hearing, and speech evaluation summary data at age 36 months, psychological, behavior profile, physical growth, and other tests at age 48 months, psychological, motor, behavior, neurological, vision, physical, and other tests at age 7-1/2 years, and language, hearing, and speech evaluations, physical growth, interval medical history, and other tests at age 8 years. Retrospective data from the follow-up study on G1 include variables on education, employment, family composition, health and health care usage, housing conditions, income and income sources, marital status, partnerships and changes, neighborhood characteristics at registration to JHCPS and current, and reproductive history. For G2, data from the follow-up include information on aspirations, education, schooling, employment, family composition, health and health care usage, housing conditions, income and income sources, legal problems, living arrangements, marriage, partnership and changes, neighborhood characteristics at birth, at ages 11/12 and 16/17, and current, reproductive history, social relationships, smoking, and substance abuse. Data for the assessed third-generation children, i.e., G3s who were 7-8 years old during the follow-up period, include information on cognitive development, academic achievement and behavior, prenatal care, health, day care, and parental aspirations.

Access Notes

  • One or more files in this study are not available for download due to special restrictions ; consult the restrictions note to learn more. You can apply online for access to the data. A login is required to apply for access. (Instructions on YouTube.)

    As explained in the ICPSR Processing Notes in the codebooks, many variables are restricted from general dissemination for reasons of confidentiality. Users interested in obtaining these data must complete an Agreement for the Use of Confidential Data, specify the reasons for the request, and obtain IRB approval or notice of exemption for their research. Apply for access to these data through the ICPSR Restricted Data Contract Portal, which can be accessed via the study home page.


DS1:  First-Generation Mothers Data - Download All Files (44.5 MB)
DS2:  Second-Generation Children Data - Download All Files (85.6 MB)
DS3:  Assessed Third-Generation Data - Download All Files (3.1 MB)

Study Description


Hardy, Janet B., and Sam Shapiro. Pathways to Adulthood: A Three-Generation Urban Study, 1960-1994: [Baltimore, Maryland]. ICPSR02420-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1999.

Persistent URL:

Export Citation:

  • RIS (generic format for RefWorks, EndNote, etc.)
  • EndNote XML (EndNote X4.0.1 or higher)


This study was funded by:

  • Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF 020568)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:   birth, child development, children, education, employment, families, family histories, health, housing conditions, neighborhood characteristics, pregnancy, prenatal care, psychological evaluation, reproductive history, urban areas

Geographic Coverage:   Baltimore, Maryland, United States

Time Period:  

  • 1960--1994

Universe:   Pregnant women seeking prenatal care and delivery at Johns Hopkins Hospital during 1960-1964, their children, and their children's children.

Data Types:   survey data, census data, and clinical data

Data Collection Notes:

(1) The descriptions of some Census variables in the codebook are incomplete. (2) The documentation for each data file in this study comprises a Portable Document Format (PDF) codebook, a data map in ASCII text format, and a PDF appendix file containing SPSS display dictionary output.


Sample:   G1s were selected for JHCPS on the basis of the last digit of their hospital history number at Johns Hopkins Hospital, which was assigned from a central hospital file at the point of first patient contact. The sample size was increased from approximately 30 percent of prenatal clinic registrants in 1960 until it reached about 70 percent in 1963 and 100 percent in 1964. G2: Children born to G1s during 1960-1965 who completed the 7- and/or 8-year-old assessments of the JHCPS. At the time of the follow-up, G2s were between 27-33 years old. Assessed G3: Children born to G2s who were 7-8 years old during the follow-up period, 1992-1994.

Data Source:

personal interviews, clinical observations, death certificates, and United States Censuses of 1960, 1970, 1980, and 1990


Original ICPSR Release:  

Version History:

  • 2005-11-04 On 2005-03-14 new files were added to one or more datasets. These files included additional setup files as well as one or more of the following: SAS program, SAS transport, SPSS portable, and Stata system files. The metadata record was revised 2005-11-04 to reflect these additions.

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