Read about the history of city directories here: Williams, A.V. Growth and Development of City Directories. Cincinnati, OH: Williams Directory, Co., 1913. 152p.
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City directories usually listed all adult residents of the community. Typical entries give:

Name; address; occupation; relationships; notification that a person moved & where they moved to; divorce dates/remarriages; widows etc.

Here is an example of entries identifying widows - giving the names of their deceased husbands in the Indianapolis 1914 City Directory.
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City Directories

Thousands of city directories are going online. City directories are a basic tool for genealogists. City directories are like an…

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