Using NYPL’s City Directories of New York City

Do city directories still exist?

Some of the privately published directories for a city date back over a hundred and fifty years, and some collections are nearly complete for every year in which a directory was published. Surprisingly, those that exist are quite easy to find. They are usually located in the public library serving a particular city.

What are US city directories?

City directories are alphabetical listings of citizens in a given locale. Information usually includes: names, addresses, heads of household, occupation and sometimes spousal names in parenthesis. Often a large city neighborhood or district name is included in a city directory listing.

What neighborhood is the New York Public Library in?

Midtown Manhattan

The Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, commonly known as the Main Branch or the New York Public Library, is the flagship building in the New York Public Library system in the Midtown Manhattan neighborhood of New York City.

How do I find city folders online?


  • City & Area Directories.
  • City Directories of the United States.
  • Cyndi’s List: Directories.
  • FamilySearch Wiki: US Directories.
  • City Directories.
  • Google Books.
  • Internet Archive.
  • Library of Congress: 1997 Inventory of Criss-Cross Directories.

Does ancestry have city directories?

Collection Information

Ancestry is home to an extensive collection of city and area directories. Directories typically contain entries for working family members and include name, occupation, and home and business addresses.

How was information collected for city directories?

They employed sales associates and census enumerators to go door to door to collect information, sell advertising and make sales for their new directories.

Which state is not included in the US city directories database?


The database currently contains directories for all states except Alaska.

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