Our Louisiana city directories date from the nineteenth century and are great sources for gathering information about individuals. They are generally arranged alphabetically by surname and can provide an individual's residence, occupation, and employer. Those from 1938 on are Polk Cross-Reference directories, which allow users to look for persons by name, address, or phone number. Our collection covers the New Orleans Area , and a few other cities in the state. These directories are located in two places, depending upon age and format: Microfilm copies are in the library's Multimedia Collection (3rd floor; 280-6550); printed copies are in the Louisiana & Special Collections Reading Room (4th floor; 280-6544). The Louisiana Collection also has a number of telephone books for various cities in the state dating from 1962.
New Orleans Area Directories
Since 1805, directories for the City of New Orleans have been produced by various publishers and do not exist for all years. None were published during the Civil War years 1862-1865. Those from the nineteenth century sometimes included the surrounding communities, some of which eventually became part of the city (e.g. Algiers, Carrollton) and others which did not (e.g. Metairie, Gretna). Those from 1938 on are Polk Cross-Reference directories.
Polk directories for the suburban areas of New Orleans date from the 1950s. While all cover Jefferson Parish, the following parishes are included intermittently: Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. John the Baptist, and St. Tammany.
|Decade||New Orleans 1||Suburban|
|1860-69||1860; 1861; 1866; 1867-1869|
|1880-89||1880; 1881-1885;1886; 1887-1889|
|1890-99||1890-1895; 1896; 1897-1899|
|1950-59||1952-56;1958||1955; 1957; 1959|
|1960-69||1960-1962; 1964-1969||1961-63;1965-1966; 1968-1969|
|1980-89||1980-83; 1986; 1988||1980; 1982-1987; 1989|
|1990-99||1990-1991;1993-1994 1996-97;1999||1990-1992;1994; 1996-1997;1999|
1All city directories issued before 1961 are available on microfilm in the Multimedia Collection on the third floor. Dates in bold on the table are available at UNO only on microfilm.
Other Louisiana Directories
We have more recent Polk directories for a few other cities in the state. All of them are located in the Louisiana & Special Collections Reading Room.