Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Tuesday's Tip - Find and Use Historical City Directories

This week's Tuesday's Tip is to find and use online and printed historical city directories to help you find residences, occupations and relationships of your ancestral families.

There are several websites to help you connect to online and printed City Directories:

1)  You can check http://www.uscitydirectories.com/ to determine if a given locality has published city directories and repositories that they might be found.

2)  Cyndi's List has a section at City Directories at http://www.cyndislist.com/citydir.htm with links to specific collections, articles about city directories, and more.

3)  Miriam Robbins Midkiff has an Online Historical Directories website at http://sites.google.com/site/onlinedirectorysite/.  There are links to free and commercial sites in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland and Thailand at present.  This is a website still being built, but it has significant and very useful content.  It includes City Directories on http://www.ancestry.com/, but not on http://www.footnote.com/ at present.

4)  http://www.footnote.com/ ($$) has online City Directories (before 1924) for 31 cities in 20 states (see http://www.footnote.com/browse.php#44|-1 for list).

5)  http://www.donslist.net/ (free) has online City Directories for cities in 36 states, with significant collections for San Francisco, Rochester, Baltimore, Atlanta, Cincinnati and Pittsburgh. 

6)  Of course, local and regional libraries, and historical societies, usually have whole or partial collections of city directories on their shelves or on microform. 

UPDATED 2:40 p.m.  Corrected link to http://www.donslist.net/ (not .com).  Thanks, Anonymous!


Heather Wilkinson Rojo said...

Here is a link to Tufts Universities Archives, Boston City Directories collection http://dca.lib.tufts.edu/features/bostonstreets/people/directories.html
It contains directories 1845 - 1925

Anonymous said...

It is www.donslist.net, not .com

Anonymous said...

Lovely post : " Tuesday's Tip - Find and Use Historical City Directories ", very important discussion indeed. Thanks a lot -
Send DHL online