Online Resources What is this? Our online resources are sets of digitized items which have been organized either around a common topic, such as the American Revolution, or to highlight a specific collection, such as the papers of Thomas Jefferson.
Era: Colonial period (circa 1620-1763) | Pick a different topic
Full title: Silence Dogood: Benjamin Franklin in The New-England Courant
This website presents includes images and transcriptions of fourteen newspaper essays by Benjamin Franklin, written in 1722 under the pseudonym Silence Dogood. Concise explanatory essays provide information about the setting in which Franklin composed what became his first published prose--his apprenticeship to his brother James, the printer of the Boston newspaper, The New-England Courant. Web presentations of the full issues of the 14 newspapers also are available allowing web users to examine the context in which the Silence Dogood essays appeared.
Full title: Maps of the French and Indian War
Online displays of maps depicting North America around the time of the French and Indian War, 1754 to 1763. The maps in this web exhibition are drawn from the collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society and provide valuable information about the planning and conduct of the war; commanders on both sides relied on maps as they made their decisions about troop and fleet movements, where to engage the enemy, and what territory to try to hold.
Full title: African Americans and the End of Slavery in Massachusetts
This website features 117 items from the collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society, including historical manuscripts and early printed works that offer a window into the lives of African Americans in Massachusetts from the late 17th century through the abolition of slavery under the Massachusetts Constitution in the 1780s.
Full title: Highlights from the Saltonstall Family Collections at the Massachusetts Historical Society
The papers, photographs, art, and artifacts of the Saltonstall family, one of the founding families of Massachusetts, chronicle five centuries of family history and involvement in public life, from before the European settlement of America through the 20th century. Saltonstall family collections at the Massachusetts Historical Society include papers of Leverett Saltonstall (1783-1845), mayor and U.S. representative from Salem, Massachusetts; Eleanor "Nora" Saltonstall's letters home to her family while serving as a volunteer in France during World War I; and the personal and political papers and photographs of U.S. Senator Leverett Saltonstall (1892-1979).
Full title: Founding Families: Digital Editions of the Papers of the Winthrops and the Adamses
With a fast and comprehensive search tool new in summer 2010, this is the digital edition of the content of the previously printed editions of the Revolutionary-era Adams Papers, a long-standing documentary edition prepared at the Massachusetts Historical Society. This digital edition includes all text of the historical documents, all editorial text, and a single index with consolidated entries for the 16 printed Adams Papers indexes. Another forthcoming digital edition will present the Winthrop Papers, a documentary edition created at the MHS.
Full title: Massachusetts Maps
This website presents manuscript maps of local towns and counties dating from 1637-1809, iconic printed maps of Massachusetts and Boston, and meticulously drawn manuscript maps by Samuel Chester Clough (1873-1949) presenting a wealth of information about property owners in Boston during the 17th and late 18th centuries.
Full title: The Object of History: 18th-Century Treasures
This companion website is divided into three parts according to John Adams’s scheme: "Politicks and War," "Mathematicks and Philosophy," and "Painting, Poetry ... and Porcelaine." It consists of artifacts, manuscripts, medals, paintings, engravings, furniture, clothing, and early publications. These historical objects form a solid foundation on which the collections of the MHS have been built and inform us today about how our ancestors lived.
Full title: Frontier Life: Borderlands, Settlement & Colonial Encounters
This digital resource containing collections from the Massachusetts Historical Society as well as content from other repositories explores the frontier regions of North America, Europe, Africa, and Australasia through documents revealing the lives of settlers and indigenous peoples in these areas. Published by Adam Matthew, this resource is available to researchers who visit the MHS library in person. It is also available at many college and university libraries.