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HIS140 American Environmental History - Burt: Research Project

Research & Interpretation

Researching your place will require some legwork. Some collections may be available digitally through an institutions website, but often visits to libraries, archives, museums, historical societies or government offices will provide you with a boon of information on your place and help set the context to your research as well. The NSCC Libraries will not have all the information you will need to complete your assignment.

When researching, consider starting locally and then moving to the state and federal levels for information. 


Libraries & Archives

A good place to begin your research is the public library in the town or city of your locale. The local library may have a history room or archive. As important, a reference librarian will be a great source for referrals to other museums, historical societies, or government offices that may have information on your place.

NOBLE Libraries on the North Shore

Directory of Massachusetts Libraries

Manuscripts, Archives & Special Collections Directory

Massachusetts State Library Special Collections

Massachusetts State Archives

National Archives at Boston


Historical Societies & Museums

Many historical societies may be housed in the local city or town museum. For example, the Lynn Museum & Historical Society.

Directory of Massachusetts Historical Societies

Massachusetts History Museums

Massachusetts Historical Society


Government Sources

Commonwealth of Massachusetts Community Profiles


Map Sources

Leventhal Map Center at Boston Public Library

American Memory Map Collections from the Library of Congress


Local Histories

Many early local histories of a city or town that have fallen out of copyright and are now in the public domain have been collected in the Internet Archive. Try a search on your city and state. Example: lynn massachusetts

Internet Archive