City Directories Research Service FAQ's
How can I order a search of directories?
- Go to the Indiana OR Ohio directory lists.
- Click "Order Search" on the appropriate directory
- A box will appear - Enter the surname you wish to gather data on and optionally list alternate spellings. Click Submit.
- Click "Proceed to Checkout" at the top of the screen
What directories are available to be searched?
A wide selection of Indiana and Ohio city directories, rural directories, plat books and telephone directories are available. We continue to list more directories on a regular basis.
> Indiana Directories List
> Ohio Directories List
What years do the directories cover?
The dates range from the early 1800s up to present day and vary from city to city.
I don't know where in Indiana or Ohio these people lived - How do I know which directories to search?
You can use other sources and databases to find the specific city or county where the families lived. These include the census records, social security death index, Indiana & Ohio Newspaper Search by CompuGen Systems and the current nationwide telephone directories available online and on CD.
Can you search other directories that are not listed?
Yes, we have directories for other cities and states available. Contact CompuGen Systems for information about other directories.
I haven't used city directories before.
Do they list all family members and ages like a census?
The content of city directories varies depending on the publisher and time period.
Most city directories (such as those published by R. L. Polk) list the husband's name and occupation, wife's name and occupation and address. Some of the rural directories (such as those published by Robinson Directories) also give the children's names and sometimes age or year of birth. Some of the older rural directories also include miscellaneous information such as number of acres owned, livestock, type of automobile owned, etc.
Can't we get all this from the Internet?
No, most of these directories are not "online".
Where do you get all the directories listed?
The directories listed are a combination of the private collection of CompuGen Systems and the vast holdings of the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Exactly what will I receive if I order from the city directories research service?
For each search requested, you will receive:
- photocopies of the title page (or cover)
- page(s) that contain the surname requested
If the surname requested appears on more than one page, and for the directories that have more than one alphabetical list of names, you will receive all pages that contain the surname desired. We highlight in yellow the entries for the surname requested.
What if the directory doesn't list the surname requested?
You will still receive a photocopy of the title page (or cover) and the page that would have contained the surname requested with a highlight at the line in the list where the surname would have been listed alphabetically. This way you know the directory was checked and does not contain the surname requested.
Please contact us and we'll be happy to help you.