I know this may sound like a silly question, but how can I tell whether or not I am looking at hardwood flooring or the subfloor when I pull up the corner of my carpet. The home was built approx. 1950 if that helps.
The species often depends upon the part of the country you live in and how much was spent on the floor. In the southwest (Texas) a hardwood it is most likely to be oak or more rarely maple. When money was tight softwoods such as long leaf pine or cypress were sometimes used. In Texas subfloor was usually southern yellow pine whereas in the northwest it may be spruce or fir. The difference in appearance will be obvious to someone who knows their wood species. Find a carpenter, cabinet builder, or seasoned housebuilder to help you. One clue you can use yourself is that subfloor in the 50's was usually layed on a diagonal and finished flooring was run square to the walls. Also, subflooring was usually 3.5 or 5.5 inches wide while finished flooring was 2.5 inches wide.