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1887 Denver Directory

Volume I: The Denver Directory of 1887, Arranged Alphabetically

All volumes of this edition of the directory are important. Volume I: The Denver Directory of 1887, Arranged Alphabetically, is a reproduction of the original directory and should be considered the most accurate and complete listing of any record. We have made an attempt to reproduce the data exactly, and have even copied some obvious mistakes. Since the data was obtained by scanning and not by manual entry, as was the case with the 1893 Directory, we have produced the entire volume, absent advertising. The serious researcher should confirm information from the derivative volumes in Volume I, as there might be additional information, or the researcher might not agree with some of the changes made in the information in the name of error correction or consistency. Note that there are additional listings in a section of the book for entries received too late for incorporation into the text and these entries have not been added to the text. Again, this is a departure from the precedent established in the 1893 Directory, and it was done to preserve the original order in the alphabetical volume.

Volume II: The Denver Directory of 1887, Arranged by Address

In contrast to Volume I, Volume II contains significant editorial changes. This volume is intended to simply give a name for each listed address so that researchers may refer to the first volume of the directory for more information. Occupation is also listed as sociologic information and is provided by the juxtaposition of people of various occupations in the same or similar address. We began the process by merging all addresses. If a name was followed by three addresses, as sometimes happened, this entry was converted into three entries, one for each address. Not all of the descriptive characters were stripped from in front of the address as they were in the 1893 Directory. Modifiers such as “bds., r.” were stripped. Modifiers such as “es., ws., n., cor.” were considered part of the address. All descriptive material, such as occupation, type of business and the like was stripped. Street names were then separated from address numbers. Attempts were made to improve consistency of the data. Numeric street names were spelled out, and filters were applied to make the data more consistent. For example, a filter was applied that converted "Av", “ave”, "av", "avs" all to "av." Punctuation, all inconsistent in the original directory, was removed. The file was then sorted first according to street name and then according to number. Revisions were made to the data either by computer or by hand to make the data more consistent. In case of doubt, either no corrections were made or the corrected entry was indicated by "[?]". The result is that the serious researcher must consider possible alternative spellings and address notations. A [sic] in an entry means that the editors identified the entry as strange in some way and rechecked and found it correct. We have undoubtedly introduced some additional errors in our attempts to correct errors and to make the data more consistent.The numbering system for street addresses changed in 1887. As far as the editors know there is no complete cross reference between the old address and the new address, although publication of this directory when cross referenced with the one for 1886 soon to be published, will be helpful. For example, the architect William Lang lived at 587 Champa in 1886, along with E. Cinnamond, Miss Laura Cinnamond, and S.A. Doll’s meat market among others. In 1887 Lang had moved, but the Cinnamonds and the meat market had not. They were listed at 2203 and 2205 Champa respectively. Also in 1886 the druggist William Arnold lived at 587 Champa, cor. 22d. Therefore the current street address for the Langs’ residence in 1886 would be 2203 Champa. S. A. Doll lived at 676 Stout in 1886 which became 2317 Stout in 1887. Note also that many Denver street names have changed between then and now and the editors have made no attempt to correct for this. See Goodstein’s book for additional information.

Volume III: Statistical Abstract of Denver 1887

This volume contains listings of the data by occupation, race, gender and employer. It will be of interest to those interested in sociologic studies of Denver. This list of occupations is dated, of course. A “Modiste,” for example, is someone who deals in fine ladies' garments and hats. The qualifications for listing married women, or for that matter any women,  independently is not immediately clear. Why colored people were listed and other ethnic groups were not separately identified is not clear, but “colored” was an identifiable data element so we used it in our tabulations.


©2002 by Canzona Publications. All rights reserved.

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  • Each of the three volumes is available as a PDF.
  • PDF search tip: In Adobe, go to Edit/Find or click on the binoculars to search the PDF for a specific name or string of letters.
  • This is also available in bound volumes in the Western History Department.
  • The Library also has bound volumes of the 1893 Denver Directory.


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Updated: June 25, 2013