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ARTH 24170: Research the Chicago Cityscape

Vital records

Building Permits

City Directories

The Library holds many Chicago city directories in the stacks.

The Newberry Library has directories on microfilm for the years 1839, 1844, 1849-1850, 1851, 1853-1857, 1859-1868, 1870-1917, 1923, and 1928-1929. These films are kept behind the reference desk on the second floor.

To find directories in the catalog, search for the following phrase as a subject:

• Chicago (Ill.) – Directories

For directories centered on particular industries or professions, search for phrases such as the following as subjects:
• Education – Illinois – Chicago – Directories
• Lawyers – Illinois – Chicago – Directories
• Real estate business – Directories


Also refer to the Library's comprehensive guide to maps.

Oral Histories