I just found one more thing to be thankful for this Thanksgiving season! Ancestry has posted 1,100 U.S. city directories to its U.S. Deluxe Collection. This addition, with an estimated 50 million names, covers some large cities and I was thrilled to see some for New York City and Brooklyn. (I know what I’ll be doing tonight!) There are directories for quite a few large cities, as well as some smaller ones, with coverage typically from the 1880s through around 1900, which neatly bridges that gap left by the missing 1890 Census.
They are in fact part of the 1890 Census Substitute Collection at Ancestry and can be searched through the main landing page for that larger collection.
Click on the image to see a sample page from an 1880 directory of Brooklyn, New York.