New York Public Library Digitizes City Directories 1786 through 1922/3 -SITE CITE #usa
The New York Public Library announced this week that it is digitizing its
collection of New York City Directories 1786-1922/23.
Using City Directories is a wonderful genealogical tool as it
gives us perspective of where our ancestors were at a specific
time and place.
Prior to telephone directories, city directories were the way
to locate people. The information in the directories includes:
name, address, profession and sometimes marital status
(listing a woman as a widow).
As the city directories lists addresses, they are helpful when
searching for people in the census. Unlike telephone directories,
one did not require a telephone to be listed.
The city directories began in the United States after the
Revolutionary War. In some instances they provide history of the area
One had to subscribe (pay) to be included. The directories were
available to those who were not included, again for a fee.
The first of the city directories to be digitized are 1849/50 through 1923,
the next being scanned are 1786-1848/9. The entire collection will be
completely online in the coming months.
You may access them free >from the New York Public Library Digital
Collections portal at: http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/
***Type New York City Directories into the search bar.***
To read more about the New York Public Library digitization of city
The New York Public Library encompasses, Manhattan, Bronx and Staten Island.
The boroughs of Queens and Kings (Brooklyn) each have their own library
systems. In 2015 the IAJGS Records Access Alert posted the Brooklyn Public
Library digitizing city directories.
Thank you to Teven Laxer, member, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring
Committee for informing us about this new free online genealogical research
Jan Meisels Allen, Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee