Search Old Craigslist Ads

How to Look Up Past Ads on Craigslist – ItStillWorks

By David Wayne Updated April 06, 2018 When you post ads on Craigslist from an account, your ads are stored on your account page as long as your account is active. You can look up active or expired ads by signing in to your account and searching the chronological list of ads. To find past ads posted by another person, use a Web archive tool to view cached Web pages. Find Ads Posted From Your AccountVisit Craigslist, click “Account” and enter your username and password when prompted (link in Resources). Your account home page displays a list of ads dating back to your account activation. While it does not provide a search bar, you can narrow your results by category and status. Click the “Category” menu and choose a category to display only ads posted to that category. Click “Active” or “Inactive” to display only active or inactive ads. Look at the Posted Date column to find an ad posted on a specific Past Craigslist Search ResultsVisit a site such as Internet Archive, or Screenshots to search for past Craigslist pages or images Example, NYC Apartment listings 6/21/2016: (links in Resources). To use Internet Archive, enter “ (without quotes) in the Search box, then select a past date from the calendar. You may have to try a few different dates until you find an archived Craigslist page that meets your criteria. Alternatively, enter the Web address of a specific listing in the Search box to land directly on that page after choosing a calendar date. and Screenshots work differently than Internet Archive by returning a sorted list of results instead of a collection of calendar dates. If contains the ad you’re looking for, you can find it by entering the ad’s specific Web address in the Search box. If Screenshots contains the ad, you can find it by searching for a specific keyword. When using either or Screenshots, click a thumbnail preview in the search results to view the full-size image of a Craigslist ad. You can follow past links from pages returned by, although Screenshots provides only images without clickable links.
How to See Craigslist Ads That Have Been Removed & Cached

How to See Craigslist Ads That Have Been Removed & Cached

If you’re looking for an ad on Craigslist, you may notice that it’s disappeared after a certain amount of time.
Image Credit: Natalia Shabasheva/iStock/GettyImages
If you’re looking for an ad on Craigslist, you may notice that it’s disappeared after a certain amount of time. Sometimes this just means that the ad has grown old and automatically been cleared, but it may also have been removed for violating Craigslist terms of use, being off-topic or because whatever was being advertised is no longer available. You can sometimes access old Craigslist ads via the cache in search engines like Google or Bing or via the Internet Archive.
View a Deleted Craigslist Post
Sometimes you may be planning to contact someone from Craigslist, the popular classified ad platform, about buying or selling something, renting an apartment, applying for a job or another type of transaction but don’t have time to do so immediately. In such cases, it can be frustrating to find that the ad you want to respond to has disappeared from ckily, there are still sometimes ways to access a Craigslist ad after it has been removed from the site. One way is to use the cache feature of search engines such as Google and Microsoft’s Bing, which stores a publicly accessible copy of many websites for at least a short amount of find a Craigslist ad or other content in Google’s cache, search for terms in the cached page, such as the approximate title and city of a Craigslist post. You can also include the term in your search to narrow your results to hits from Craigslist. If you find a Google hit for the page you want, click the downward-facing arrow and click the Cached button. That will give you the most recent cached version of the page available in Google’s has a similar feature which allows you to click to a cached page in its cache. Keep in mind that since the search engines capture page content at different intervals, they may have different saved versions of the same page from different times.
Using Other Archives
Search engine caches aren’t the only way to find old versions of pages. If you know the exact address of a Craigslist ad, you may be able to find it in the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine, which stores historic copies of many websites. If you have visited the ad before, you may be able to find its address in your browser’s history, which is searchable in most modern browsers by clicking the History button on the menu bar at the top of your browser window or top of your archives may keep copies of Craigslist ads in particular, such as Harmari’s tool to search historic classified ads. You may need to pay to use certain Craigslist archive can also search Craigslist to see if the post has been reposted under a new address. Search for terms you recall from the original post.
Things to Keep in Mind
If you find a Craigslist post you think is interesting, it’s often a good idea to print it, save it with your browser’s save feature or take a screenshot on your computer or phone. That will let you have a copy even if you can’t find it in a Craigslist cache or on the original member that if a Craigslist post disappears, there may be a reason for it. It may have been reported for fraud or other disallowed activity, or whatever good or service was being advertised might no longer be available. Use caution when responding to historic Craigslist ads, and keep in mind that whoever posted them may not be that excited to hear from additional respondents after the ad has been taken down.
Previous Craigslist Postings - Open Data Stack Exchange

Previous Craigslist Postings – Open Data Stack Exchange

You can use the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine to retrieve old Craigslist pages.
For example, capture dates:
And one archived page:
All of these links go to archived listings. For example:
Instead of screen-scraping, there is an API, which makes the process of finding archive dates for individual pages.
This simple API for Wayback is a test to see if a given url is archived and currenlty accessible in the Wayback Machine.
Here is a small python script to access the API.
The good thing about Craigslist is that one you give the host-name (i. e. ), the rest of the URL structure should be similar. You can also scrape the main page to get all the host-names (sfbay, newyork, etc).
You’ll find a complete list of categories sites on the CL bulk loading page.
Other ideas:
Rework an unofficial API to use the Wayback machine URL
Use the RSS feed from CL
For other ideas, take a look at these questions from StackOverflow

Frequently Asked Questions about search old craigslist ads

Does the Wayback Machine work on Craigslist?

You can use the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine to retrieve old Craigslist pages. Instead of screen-scraping, there is an API, which makes the process of finding archive dates for individual pages.

Does Craigslist delete old ads?

Once you’ve created an ad, you’ll be able to delete it at any time for any reason. After your ad goes live, Craigslist will send an automated email that includes the post’s numerical ID and the title of your ad in the subject line. Here you’ll find a link to your ad as well as a link to edit or delete your post.Nov 11, 2020

Do Craigslist ads expire?

Although there are specific guidelines for how long an ad stays on Craigslist based on the type of ad and posting locale, the service has a list of master guidelines that supersede the others. Under these guidelines, all job postings expire after 30 days for paid ads and 45 days for free ads.

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