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Several name-rich sources are accessible, such as:

  • Yearbooks and annuals
  • Tax lists
  • Elite blue books
  • Vital records
  • Burial lists
  • Registers
  • Biographical dictionaries
  • Gazetteers

Maps document physical developments within the city as well as residential data, including:

  • Land development and internal improvements over time
  • Travel routes
  • Locations of government buildings, churches and schools
  • Concentrations of wealth and poverty
  • Spread of disease
  • And much more…

During the “Long 19th Century,” New York City was the focal point in North America for industry, trade, commerce and immigration. This is a unique collection of historical directories, member lists and other name-rich sources from the New-York Historical Society (N-YHS), featuring materials that track individuals and organizations over time and place.

Gateway to North America contains over 800,000 pages of content from over 1,500 print and manuscript directories, member lists, travel guides and other sources, chronicling the people and organizations of New York City from the late 18th through the early 20th century. It is an invaluable resource for scholars, students, researchers and educators alike.

Content highlights include:

  • Residential, trade and occupational directories
  • Membership lists for professional groups, philanthropic and governmental institutions, ethnic organizations, religious groups and leisure clubs
  • Names and physical descriptions of Civil War deserters and the incarcerated
  • Illustrated advertisements
  • Commercial listings by trade
  • Descriptions of local philanthropic, religious and governmental institutions
  • Travel schedules
  • Maps
  • Postal and tax rates
  • Town histories
Coverage List:

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Illustrated Guide of New York

January 1, 1899

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New York Illustrated

January 1, 1914

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Picture of New York in 1851

January 1, 1851