I went on Ancestry.com the other day, to see if I could find anything about my 2nd-great-grandfather, John Gibson, in Montana. It'd been a while since I just did an open search, and I wasn't sure anything would come up. But it did, and in a big way! Ancestry now has (or maybe has had for a while, and I just never noticed) a huge database of city directories from all over the country, all lumped into one database called U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989. I found him in 18 - yes 18! - separate directories, all giving address, occupation, and limited family info. I also found his father-in-law, Dennis Cain/Kane, listed in several of them, including the one for the year after his death, which listed his death date. I'm very excited to go through them and catalog everything it tells me about him. Hopefully I'll find something that will help me dig up more details on him and his family in Canada.
Then, just because I'm a glutton for punishment, I went and searched for Samuel Joseph, another 2nd-great-grandfather, who spent several years in Anaconda, Montana. I only found him in a couple of them, but found many more (about a dozen) for his son, Elmer/Emil Joseph. They also had info on his wife and several of his kids. I know I just got done with going through all my Joseph files, but I couldn't resist trying to find more clues about Sam and his whereabouts in the 1910s and 1920s.
I know there a LOT more relatives I need to look for in this directories database, but just don't have the time to do so. I've still got a lot of Harris records to search through, DNA tests to analyze, and a new membership at SGGEE to fully utilize (thanks again, Jim!!). One day things will slow down, right? Right?