The Beehive: the official blog of the Massachusetts Historical Society

Trick AND Treat: The Digitized Norwood Penrose Hallowell Papers

The recently launched fully digitized manuscript collections of Civil War papers at Massachusetts Historical Society (MHS) is a significant step forward in making our collections accessible remotely. Motivated by the sesquicentennial of the Civil War, the presentation [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Friday, 31 October, 2014, 12:00 PM

Ghost Advice!

Happy Halloween, dear readers! In preparation for all the spooky fun and candy this evening, I present you with two “facts” about ghosts from English humorist Jerome K. Jerome’s 1891 book, Told After Supper:  1. It is always Christmas Eve in a ghost [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Friday, 31 October, 2014, 1:00 AM

Black Days: The Wall Street Crash of 1929

Today we commemorate the 85th anniversary of Black Tuesday, the worst day of the 1929 stock market crash that preceded the Great Depression. For a close-up look at these events, we turn to the papers of Henry P. Binney (1863-1940), a Boston banker and investment adviser. [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Wednesday, 29 October, 2014, 1:00 AM

This Week @ MHS

On Tuesday, 28 October, there is an Immigration and Urban History seminar starting at 5:15PM. Join us as Laura Barraclough, Yale University, presents "At the Crossroads: Charros, Cowboys, and Capitalists in San Antonio, Texas," a paper which examines the practice of charreria [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Sunday, 26 October, 2014, 8:00 AM

A Church for a Zombie: Architecture in Salem, MA

One thing that I like about working as a reference librarian is the extreme variation in the nature of questions I receive from outside researchers. In a library like the MHS, it is commonplace to work on inquiries relating to 17th century matters, such as King Philip’s [...] read more

comments: 2 | permalink | Published: Friday, 24 October, 2014, 12:00 PM

Stephen Greenleaf Bulfinch Diary, Post 37

The following excerpt is from the diary of Stephen Greenleaf Bulfinch. Monday, Oct. 24th, 1864 News of continued successes, increasing the prospect of peace on the right terms. God grant it! [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Thursday, 23 October, 2014, 8:00 AM

“To the Women of Boston…”

Like many New Englanders, I followed the recent Market Basket labor strike with near-obsessive interest. Of course, a small, selfish part of me was irked that my “More for Your Dollar” shopping had been temporarily suspended. But beyond that, I was inspired by [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Thursday, 23 October, 2014, 1:00 AM

A Farewell to Summer in the Henry Daland Chandler Papers

The transition to autumn marks the end-of-summer close for many New England communities. Bustling summer destinations pack in, close up, and settle down for the upcoming winter. The long days of summer heat and noise grow cool, quiet, and short. New England foliage bursts [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Wednesday, 22 October, 2014, 1:00 AM

This Week @ MHS

It's all about Tuesday this week at the Society. First up that day, 21 October, is an author talk taking place at noon. Join local historian and author Barbara Berenson for "Civil War Boston" as she narrates a thrilling and memorable journey through the Hub in the Civil [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Sunday, 19 October, 2014, 8:00 AM

“I can do nothing without you”: The 250th Anniversary of John and Abigail Adams

This month we celebrate the 250th wedding anniversary of John and Abigail Adams. Their marriage endured through separations, long in distance and time, war, partisan politics, and family hardships. Their distance and struggle became our treasure, because it is through their [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Wednesday, 15 October, 2014, 1:00 AM

This Week @ MHS

We have another busy week ahead here at the Society, starting with a holiday event. Please note that the library of the MHS is closed on Monday, 13 October, in observance of Columbus Day. However, the building will remain open as part of Opening Our Doors, Boston's largest [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Sunday, 12 October, 2014, 8:00 AM

“The Moonlight Is Wasted”: Not So Quiet on the Western Front

The stacks of the MHS are filled with innumerable letters written by soldiers serving in U.S. wars to their families back home. This year marks both the sesquicentennial of the penultimate year of the Civil War and the centennial of the first year of World War I. It’s [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Wednesday, 8 October, 2014, 1:00 AM

This Week @ MHS

First up this week on the list of events here at the MHS is "Katherine, Grace, and Mary: Archaeological Revelations of 17th and 18th Century Women from Boston's Big Dig." Beginning at 6:00PM on Monday, 6 October, join us as Joe Bagley, Boston City Archaeologist, discusses [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Sunday, 5 October, 2014, 12:00 PM

Mysteries of the Elisha W. Smith, Jr. Logbook: Part III

Research is a nonlinear process rife with search strategies and dead ends. While researching the inside front cover note and the scrapbook engravings of the Elisha W. Smith Jr. logbook, I remained curious about the scrapbooker’s identity. Several clues exist within [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Saturday, 4 October, 2014, 1:00 AM

Marion’s Hidden Curriculum: Sexuality Education in the 1930s (Part Two)

In my last post, I highlighted the curriculum for a mid-twentieth-century course on “the family” located in the Frank Irving Howe, Jr. Family Papers. The young woman who attended the course was eighteen-year-old Marion Howe, whose diaries from the period elliptically [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Friday, 3 October, 2014, 12:00 AM

Just Launched! Nine Fully Digitized Civil War Collections

Reading handwritten letters and documents by men who experienced Civil War battles and military life can be a riveting experience.  Nine collections of Civil War manuscripts are available at the Massachusetts Historical Society's website as complete online collections.   [...] read more

comments: 0 | permalink | Published: Thursday, 2 October, 2014, 1:00 AM