Idaho Directories

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History[edit | edit source]

City and county directories are similar to telephone books and are useful for locating people. They were often published annually, listing heads of households, employed household members, and their occupations and addresses. They can be used with census records or as substitutes for them.

Directories are particularly helpful for research in large cities where a high percentage of the people were renters, new arrivals, or temporary residents. In fact, they may be the only source to list an ancestor who was not registered to vote, did not attend church, did not pay taxes, or did not own property. Most households were included because the directories were created for salesmen, merchants, and others interested in contacting residents of an area. They are also useful tools for studying occupations and migration patterns.

Directories of heads of households have been published for major cities in Idaho.

Resources for Idaho Directories[edit | edit source]

Libraries and Archives[edit | edit source]

Idaho State Archives in Boise.

Directories Online[edit | edit source]

Family History Library[edit | edit source]

The Family History Library has city directories for various years from throughout the state of Idaho including:


1918 Family History Library FHL film 908278 item 2
1921, 1923, 1927 Family History Library FHL films 908174-75
1904, 1914-18, etc. Family History Library FHL book 979.628 E4p

Coeur d'Alene

1905, 1908-1917, 1923-24,

1927-1928, 1931-1932

Family History Library FHL film 2308618,

2308623, 2308624

1958-59, 1963, 1966,

1967, 1970, 1977

Family History Library FHL book 979.694 E4p


1905-06 Family History Library FHL fiche 6046575
1921 Family History Library FHL film 1035751 item 6
1927, 1957, 1962, etc. Family History Library FHL book 979.647/P1 E4p

To find directories, consult the Place Search of the FamilySearch Catalog under:


Farm Directories[edit | edit source]

The Gem State Rural Publishing Company published books and magazines out of Caldwell, Idaho during the early part of the 20th Century. One of the series envisioned by this company was the Gem State Rural (Farm) Directory, to be published in several volumes. The intention was to print a directory for each county or combination of counties for the state. At least five volumes were printed, and a sixth was planned. At least one of these volumes is available online. Some are quite rare and copies are difficult to locate.

Ada County, 1917-1918
Bonneville, Madison, and Jefferson Counties, [dates??; copies not yet located]
Canyon County, 1916-1917
Gooding, Minidoka, and Lincoln Counties [planned but apparently never printed]
Malheur County, Oregon and Owyhee County, Idaho, 1918-1919
Twin Falls County, 1916-1917

These farm directories listed land owners by town, including those who resided outside the county. Names of owners, size of family, acreage, location of the land, and a list of produce and livestock grown are included.

Websites[edit | edit source]

  • US City Directories This web site identifies printed, microfilmed, and online directories and their repositories.