“…a pretty watering place…”

City and county directories were predecessors of telephone directories. Financed by ad sales, these privately published volumes profiled individual communities and listed the names of prominent residents and businesses. Those directories that have survived are important tools for researchers. They also provide a sort of real-time narrative peek at everyday life in a place at a given time.  Here’s a verbal snapshot of Carlsbad from an 1893 San Diego County directory:

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