French SIG #France business directories newly searchable #france


Logan Kleinwaks
 

I recently added the following business directories with French SIG
coverage to my search engine at http://genealogyindexer.org, >from the
series of global directories published by Leuchs:

1841-1846 edition:
France Business Directory (Leuchs vol. 19) {d426}
Switzerland Business Directory (Leuchs vol. 10) {d408}
Belgium and Netherlands Business Directory (Leuchs vol. 15) {d413}
Greece, Turkey, Asia, Africa, Australia Business Directory (Leuchs
vol. 23) {d420}
Rhineland, Westphalia, Luxemburg Business Directory (Leuchs vol. 4) {d402}

1865 Frankfurt, Darmstadt, Cassel, Nassau, Homburg, Luxemburg Business
Directory (Leuchs vol. 4) {d385}

1833 Europe Business Directory (Leuchs) {d423}

These are all included if you search at http://genealogyindexer.org
with the default options. You can limit a search to one or more of
these directories by appending the codes in {} after your search, like
this: cohen {d413, d420, d426}. There is currently no way to search
just the French SIG-covered sections of these directories, but search
results will often indicate the sections where matches occur (e.g.,
results >from the Belgium and Netherlands directory d413 might include
"Section: Brussels").

All search results link to scans of the matching directory pages.
Except for the all-France directory d426, the scans are hosted by the
Bavarian State Library, which has impressive online holdings that I
expect will yield many more genealogically useful sources upon further
exploration. The all-France directory d426 is hosted by Google Books,
but the scanned volume was >from the Bavarian State Library (I do not
know why the scans are not hosted there). Another pecularity of the
all-France directory d426 is that, for a brief section in the middle
of the directory, Google Books will only display every other page.
This means that about half of the pages >from the following sections
are not included in the search engine: Guyenne, Gascogne, Limousin,
Saintonge, Angoumois, Navarra, Bretagne, Normandie, French
Netherlands, Lorrain.

I made the directories searchable by using Optical Character
Recognition (OCR) to convert the scanned images to text, a process
that is not 100% accurate (but is much faster than manual
transcription). The accuracy for surnames and occupations is very
good, but the accuracy for town names is not. Therefore, if you are
interested in all the Leuchs entries >from a particular town, I suggest
refering to the place index ("Orts-Register") at the end of each
directory, rather than (or in addition to) searching for the town's
name.

These directories are certainly not comprehensive, so not finding
someone listed in a town's section definitely does not mean (s)he did
not have a business there at the time. For some towns, a relatively
high proportion of the entries are likely Jewish, judging >from their
names only, and, sometimes, Jewish merchants are identified as such,
but, in general, I do not know how well represented Jewish merchants
are.

Should you wish to examine these directories without searching, you
can find links to their scans and their original German titles at
http://genealogyindexer.org/directories.

I frequently add directories and other sources to the search engine,
but I usually do not announce additions here. To receive
announcements, follow @gindexer on Twitter.

If you have any research successes with these directories, please let me know!

Best regards,

Logan Kleinwaks
kleinwaks@...
near Washington, D.C.

Join main@groups.jewishgen.org to automatically receive all group messages.