Worcester Free Public Library

Where in Worcester ?


Where in Worcester ?


Many times the most difficult part of obtaining historical records is knowing where to go to find them. In Worcester, there are many institutions that maintain the records of our rich history.

To assist and guide you through your search for historical records, we organize finding records by institution. These recordkeepers work together to assist you. the public, in your search.

Please contact the particular institution in advance of a visit so your request for records may be as pleasant and fruitful as possible.


Worcester Resources

American Antiquarian Society (AAS)
185 Salisbury Street
Worcester, MA 01609
(508) 755-5221
www.americanantiquarian.org

Guy Burnham Map and Aerial (GBM)
Photography Library
Clark University
950 Main Street
Worcester, MA 01610
(508) 793-7322
www.maplib.clarku.edu

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints
Family History Center (FHC)
67 Chester St.
Worcester, MA 01605
(508) 852-7000

Massachusetts National Guard (MNG)
Museum and Archives
44 Salisbury Street
Worcester, MA 01609
(508) 797-0334
www.state.ma.us/guard/Museum/museum.htm

Worcester City Clerk's Office (WCC)
Worcester City Hall
455 Main Street
Worcester MA 01609
(508) 799-1126
www.ci.worcester.ma.us

Worcester Historical Museum (WHM)
30 Elm Street
Worcester, MA 01609
(508) 753-8278
www.worcesterhistory.org

Worcester Probate Court
Worcester County Courthouse
50 Harvard Street
Worcester, MA 01608
(508) 770-0825

Worcester Registrar of Deeds (WRD)
Worcester County Courthouse
50 Harvard Street
Worcester, MA 01608
(508) 798-7713
www.masslandrecords.com

Worcester Public Library (WPL)
3 Salem Square
Worcester, MA 01608
(508) 799-1655
www.worcpublib.org

OTHER MASSACHUSETTS RESOURCES

Massachusetts State Archives (MSA)
220 Morrissey Blvd.
Boston, MA 02125
(617) 727-2816
www.state.ma.us/sec/arc/arcidx.htm

National Archives and Records Adm
Silvio Conte Center (NARA-P)
10 Conte Dr.
Pittsfield, MA 01201
(413) 236-3604
www.archives.gov/facilities/ma/pittsfield.html

National Archives and Records Adm
Frederick C. Murphy Federal Center
380 Trapelo Road (NARA-W)
Waltham, MA 02452
(866) 406-2379


Where Can I Find?

ARCHIVAL MATERIALS


AAS; MNG collections document: the MA Militia and National Guard from 1780-1940; MSA; NARA-P; NARA-W;WHM (Worcester companies, families,and related institutions)

CITY AND TOWN HISTORIES


AAS (nationwide); WHM & WPL MA primarily; WPL digitized national Collection on Heritage Quest.

CITY DIRECTORIES


AAS (one of the largest collections in the US with a national focus to 1880); WHM & WPL have both city directories and house directories and specialized directories for Worcester. WPL also has directories for other MA cities.

CLIPPING FILES


WHM has files from the early 1800's-to the present, WPL has files from circa 1960 to the present.

COURT RECORDS


MSA; NARA -W; the Worcester Probate Court has records from 1955 on at the Courthouse and 1731-1954 in off-site storage. WHM & WPL have indexes to Worcester Probate Court from 1731 - 1897. WPL has indexes for other MA county Courts as well.

DEEDS


The Registrar of Deeds at the Worcester County Courthouse has images of land records from 1731- present online At www.masslandrecords.com indexing
from 1966- present.

FEDERAL CENSUS


NARA-P & NARA-W have all federal census material nationwide. WHM has transcriptions of the MA Manuscript Federal Census Schedules 1790,1800,1810,1820,1830 and 1840 also Transcriptions of 1798 Federal Direct Tax and 1826 Worcester District School Tax List; WPL has all Federal census material from 1790 - 1930 for MA;1790 -1870 for all New England States; online access to all nation-wide censuses and indexing of same via AncestryPlus and Heritage Quest.

GENEALOGIES AND FAMILY HISTORIES


AAS (nationwide) ; WHM, MA primarily but others as well; WPL, MA, microfiche collection and digitized collection accessible on Heritage Quest, nationwide in scope.

MAGAZINES


AAS extensive collection, nation-wide to 1876, WHM Worcester related publications, WPL nationwide collection 18th and 19th century, Worcester related publications.

MAPS


AAS to 1876; GBM has extensive collection, local, national, worldwide; WHM atlases of MA, 100 maps of Worcester 1683 - present and Clarendon Harris's Worcester Center Village Map and Directory reconstituted and transcribed; WPL atlases of MA, maps of Worcester, Sanborn maps of MA on microfilm, digitized Sanborn maps of New England. Cities; WCC has Sanborn maps of Worcester as well.

MILITARY RECORDS


AAS has printed volumes on military units from many states; MNG has collections of MA military records, artifacts and books regarding MA Militia and National Guard from 1775 to the present; NARA-W; WHM has a militia collection, information on the Civil War, Revolutionary War, and Spanish American War; WPL has information on the Civil War, Revolutionary War, histories of Civil War military units, and the Civil War Veteran Census of 1890.

NATURALIZATION RECORDS


MSA; WPL has the Indexes to naturalization applications for the New England States 1793-1906; NARA-W; NARA-P

NEWSPAPERS


AAS has one of the finest collections of Early American newspapers in the country, nationwide in scope to 1876. WPL has a collection of Worcester and MA newspapers from 1704 to the present. In addition,WPL has the complete Worcester Telegram and Gazette to the present, the Boston Globe 1960 - the present, and the
complete New York Times 1855 - present.

PASSENGER LISTS


NARA-P; NARA-W; WPL has indexes to and passenger lists for arrivals at the Port of Boston, 1820 -1920.

PHOTOGRAPHS


E.B.Luce Co. has an extensive collection of Worcester photographs, many of which are displayed on its Website: http://www.ebluce.com/eblucecollection/ WHM has an extensive collection of photographs (100,000) and photographic negatives (200,000) of street views, portraits, group portraits, and others organized by subject. WPL has a small collection of photos of Worcester buildings and streets.

Vital Records: Births, Deaths & Marriages


The WCC has all Records for the city of Worcester only. WHM has an almost complete collection of MA printed records organized by city and town to 1850; WPL has all MA Vital Records, organized by city and town, that have been microfilmed to date. These records occasionally include town records and church records. WPL also has the collection of MA printed records to 1850. WPL has vital records from other New England states as well, including the Barber Collection, the Corbin Collection and the Hale Collection.

WORCESTER CITY DOCUMENTS


WCC has all Worcester city documents including an online index to Worcester city council meetings, reports of various city departments and other administrative documents. WHM has the bound set of the City of Worcester Annual Reports, also some Fire Department records and log books. WPL has all city of Worcester Annual Reports to the present, including reports of various city agencies and departments.

THE FAMILY HISTORY CENTER OF WORCESTER


provides researchers with an opportunity to access the massive microfilm collection of the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. Patrons order specific films through the local Family History Center. They first search the online catalog of the Family History Library, http://www.familysearch.org, copy off the film numbers of the specific items they wish to request, then order the film. The FHL has worldwide documents that may be requested, including census material, city directories, vital records, court records, land records religious records, histories and family genealogies to name just some of the categories available.

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