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Need Advice. How to find someone when you only know name?

Trying to help a fam friend find her dad. But cant come up with a good strategy because she only knows his name and that he got her mom pregnant in Memphis-- that's it.

He's probably still living. I said hey, you can just pick up the phone book, but he might deny. Then my mother who has only become acquainted thru my venture tries to tell me and the friends that she need to troll thru countless censuses to see if he's still there-- BUT IT DOESNT MATTER IF SHE DOESNT KNOW WHO HE REALLY IS FROM SOME OTHER GUY WITH THE SAME NAME.

This is causing issues so please give me some advice.

Best Answer - Chosen by Asker: In the US, census records are restricted by law to 72 yrs, meaning that he would have had to be born prior to 1930 to even be in the last open census. In reality, the reason for restrictions is to prevent use of such information for identifying living persons, and thus when the census is taken.. confidentiality can be assured. Restricting personal information is becoming even more important these days, since more and more people are becoming victims of things like id theft.
And (as stated in your note), it would be critical to insure that with several men of the same name, it would be hard to be sure this is the same person.
In real life?? Even if mom knew EXACTLY who he was then, and where he is now, that would do nothing to prevent a dispute, that would only be solved by DNA testing. Or by cooperation and help from a suspected sibling. There are thousands of cases of fathers being found, years after the fact, and happy reunions. Those are the successes. I personally have to consider that many such situations do NOT end the way people would like. The same is true of adoptive searches, and people have to weigh all the pros and cons.
From my genealogy standpoint, I completely respect the feelings of many adults (or children) who are involved in not being certain of paternity. Given the limited information, my own opinion is that this one is a real stretch, and unlikely to work.