Cuyahoga County OHGenWeb


City Directories are a helpful resource to genealogists, especially for filling in those years between the census records. It is good to extract your ancestor's information for each successive year, to get an idea of their work history and where they lived. Some directories list spouses and children. Often you will find the widow with her husband's name listed shortly after he died. Childrne in the household who are working are often listed. (One caution - city directory information is collected often the year before the date of the directory.) City directories list residents even if they have no phone or if a phone number is unlisted.

Other directories than the usual city ones exist, too. Farm directories are great sources. Phone directories are usually by name, but sometimes have the numbers listed numerically with the owner. And Criss-Cross Directories list everyone by street address. Directories often have historical information at the front or back, businesses, maps, statistics, and emergency information in them.

We suggest you start here for an explanation of the various directories in Cuyahoga County:

Guide to City Directories, Criss Cross Directories, and Telephone Directories at the Cleveland Public Library.

Online directories can be found at the following sites: - As of 2013 Ancestry has the following Cuyahoga County Directories online:

  • Bedford: 1939, 1945, 1948, 1950, 1952, 1954, 1955, 1957, and 1959-1960.
  • Cleveland: 1861, 1863-1943, 1947, 1951, 1953-1960. Also they have directories of Bar Association, businesses, churches, socialites, and the Cleveland Blue Book (society address book)
  • Parma: 1946, 1948, 1951, 1953, 1955-56, 1958-1960.

FOLD3 - They have city directories from 1861-1923. If you have a Cuyahoga County Public Library Card you can access these records for free from home on Fold3. Go to: and click on Research, then Electronic Resources, enter your library card number and password, choose Genealogy on the left, then Fold3. Once you are on the Fold3 page, on the left click "Records" on the top of the page, then "Browse", then "Non Military" on the left, then City Directories, then "Ohio", then "City Directories - Cleveland." 1861-1923 on Fold3. gives a good list of city directories with links for Cleveland and Cuyahoga County:
CUYAHOGA COUNTY ARCHIVE - They have various years of city directories in hardcopy form.
FAIRVIEW PARK REGIONAL LIBRARY - They have the best collection by far - most on microfilm, but many in hardcopy.
WESTERN RESERVE HISTORICAL SOCIETY - They also have city directories on microfilm and in hardcopy as well.

Contact the Webmaster


This page was created 28 October 2013 last updated on 12 April 2016.

© Cuyahoga County OHGenWeb 2013-15. All Rights Reserved.