City and county directories can be used with census records and as a substitute for census records and other genealogical sources. They can be used for locating a person, particularly in large cities, and for studying a person’s migration pattern. They may give clues to when a person died or moved from the area. City and rural directories are alphabetically arranged by surname and are often published annually.
The publication of directories began in the early nineteenth century and continues to the present time. Directories list heads of households and employed household members, occupations, and addresses. Wives' names are given in some directories, and sometimes their date of death may be given. Local information such as names and locations of churches, schools, business firms, and street guides may also be included in the directories.
Directories of heads of households have been published for major cities in Ohio. The Family History Library has a large collection of directories for about 30 cities in Ohio. Local libraries and the Ohio Historical Society also have collections of directories.
Directories are listed in the Place Search of the Family History Library Catalog under OHIO, [COUNTY] - DIRECTORIES for county directories and under OHIO, [COUNTY], [CITY] - DIRECTORIES for city directories.