The Louisiana & Lower Mississippi Valley Collection contains historical directories and phonebooks for many Louisiana towns and cities. The best way to locate these items in the LSU Libraries' catalog is to do an advanced search. Limit your search to "Special Collections" under "Library," then enter a subject term using the name of a town or city, with the word "directories" (for example: Natchitoches directories). If a town is very small, try entering the name of the parish.
This guide lists commonly used directories, listed chronologically.
A large collection of Louisiana phonebooks, mostly ca. 1950-1990, is available. For more information, click here and then click on the link to the collection finding aid.
Be aware that most Louisiana towns did not publish extensive directories until the mid-twentieth century. Newspapers, however, occasionally contained brief directories of prominent businessmen and professionals; for help locating newspapers, see the guide to Louisiana Newspapers.
1805. New Orleans in 1805: A Directory and Census (1936).
1822. The New-Orleans Directory and Register [microfilm].
1832. The New Orleans Directory.
1837. The New-Orleans Guide.
1840-41. New-Orleans Directory for 1841.
1849-52. Cohen's New Orleans and Lafayette Directory. [Note: Lafayette = former suburb of New Orleans]
1853-55. Cohen's New Orleans Directory.
1859-69. Gardner's New Orleans Directory.
1870. Edwards' Annual Directory.
1871-73. Edwards' Annual Directory.
1874-1933, 1935. Soards' New Orleans City Directory.
1913-14. Woods Directory. African-American businesses.
1938-73. Polk's New Orleans City Directory. Some issues missing; check catalog record.
1943-95. Miscellaneous New Orleans phonebooks, in Louisiana Phonebook collection.
1974-present. New Orleans City Directory. Some issues missing; check catalog record.
1959-87. New Orleans Suburban Area Directory. Some issues missing; check catalog record.
1855. Michael Gill, City of Baton Rouge, the Capital of Louisiana. Map with brief business directory.
1857-58. Mygatt, A. & Co's New Orleans Business Directory. Contains section on Baton Rouge.
1899-1991. [Baton Rouge City Directory]. Some issues missing; check catalog record.
1916, 1921, 1927-86, 1994-95. Miscellaneous Baton Rouge phonebooks, in Louisiana Phonebook collection.
1921-22, 1927. Classified Business Directory of Baton Rouge.
1966-1973. Polk's Baton Rouge Suburban Directory.
1974-1984. Baton Rouge Suburban Directory.
1993-94. Polk Baton Rouge City Directory.
1995-present. Polk City Directory, Baton Rouge. Some issues missing; check catalog record.
1997-98, 2001, 2005. Greater Baton Rouge Business Directory.
1937-2007. LSU telephone directory.