Washington, Postmaster Indexes (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.

Contents

Record Description

This Collection of Indexes will include records Prior to 1965.

Directories are published books that are usually updated every year or so. This collection of directories consists of postal and shipping guides to Washington counties. They are usually arranged alphabetically.

The first directories were simple groupings of residents by street within large cities. The businesses that compiled the directories usually combined the listings with their own business or professional information and address. Information on other professionals and businesses quickly began to be included on the lists. Then the directories began dividing the names by function, and eventually there were multiple types of directories, such as city, telephone, county and regional business, professional, organizational, religious, and post office and street directories. 

Directories were created to form a readily accessible record with current residence or contact information. They were created primarily by businesses for advertising and sales purposes. The information in directories is fairly reliable because it was usually provided by the business people and residents themselves.

For a list of records by localities and surnames currently published in this collection, select the Browselink from the collection landing page.

Record Content

The indexes usually include the following information:

  • Name of head of household or business
  • Name of spouse
  • Street address
  • Other contact information such as telephone number
  • Occupation or business enterprise

How to Use the Record

To search the collection, select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page
⇒ Select the "County, Surname Range" which takes you to the images.

Search the collection by image comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine which one is your ancestor. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to make this determination.

To begin your search, you must know the following:

  • Name of your ancestor
  • The city or town where he or she lived

Once you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate the information given. Some directories list all members of the household separately, especially those 18 years of age and older. However, the information given in a directory is usually brief so it can be easy confuse individuals. Compare what information is given with what you already know about your ancestor to make sure it is the correct person.

Next, look at the pieces of information given in the directory for new information. Add any new information to your records of each family. You should also look for leads to other records about your family.

For example:

  • Use the residence or address and family names to locate your family in the federal and state census records.
  • Use the residence or town and family names to search for other local records such as church records and land records.

You may also find these suggestions helpful.

  • Transcribe the information from the site, or download it for viewing or printing.
  • Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname. This is especially helpful if the surname is unusual.
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives. This can help you identify other generations of your family. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.

If you are unable to find the ancestors you are looking for, try the following:

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
  • Search the directories of nearby towns and cities.

typographical errors may have occurred.

Related Websites

Washington State Library 

Related Wiki Articles

Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. Guidelines are available to help you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide. If you would like to get more involved join the WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

Citations for individual image records are available for this collection. Browse through images in this collection and click on the "Show Citation" box: Washington, Postmaster Indexes, Prior to 1965

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.


Citation for This Collection

The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Record collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher and archive for the original records.

"Washington, Postmaster Indexes, Prior to 1965" Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing Postmaster General. State Library, Olympia.

 

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  • This page was last modified on 10 June 2014, at 21:01.
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