Washington, Postmaster Indexes (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Washington Postmaster Indexes, Prior to 1965 .
CID1404287
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Washington, United States
Washington flag.png
Flag of Washington
US Locator Washington.png
Location of Washington
Record Description
Record Type Directory
Collection years Prior-1965
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites


What is in the Collection?

This collection of indexes includes records prior to 1965.


To Browse This Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Washington Postmaster Indexes, Prior to 1965.

Collection Content

Sample Image

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.

What Can this Collection Tell Me?

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 Do I Search the Collection?

To begin your search, you must know:

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

Compare the information on the image to what you already know about your ancestor to determine if it is the correct family or person. You may need to compare several images before you find your ancestor.

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Pagethen:
⇒ Select the County, Surname Range.


For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line article FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.

What Do I Do Next?

Whenever possible, view the original records to verify the information and to find additional information that might not be reported. These pieces of information can lead you to additional records and family members.

I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the information to find other records such as birth, christening, census, land and death records.
  • Use the information to find additional family members.
  • Repeat this process with additional family members found, to find more generations of the family.
  • Church Records often were kept years before government records were required and are a good source for finding ancestors before 1900.

I Can’t Find Who I’m Looking for, What Now?

  • Try viewing the original record to see if there were errors in the transcription of the name, age, residence, etc. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • Collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This list can help you identify possible relations that can be verified by records.
  • If you cannot locate your ancestor in the locality in which you believe they lived, then try searching records of a nearby locality in an area search.
  • Standard spelling of names typically did not exist during the periods our ancestors lived in. Try variations of your ancestor’s name while searching the index or browsing through images.
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names. Try searching for these names as well.
  • Search the indexes and records of Washington, United States Genealogy.
  • Search in the Washington Archives and Libraries.

Citing this Collection

Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.

Collection Citation:

"Washington Postmaster Indexes, Prior to 1965" Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing Postmaster General. State Library, Olympia.


Image citation:

The image citation is available by clicking on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Washington Postmaster Indexes, Prior to 1965.


How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.