Object of the Month


August 2015

The True Sons of Liberty of Massachusetts Gather to Celebrate the Fourth Anniversary of the Stamp Act Riots, 14 August 1769

Manuscript, 14 August 1769

July 2015

"Shamefully abus'd": Bobolition Day Broadsides in 19th Century Boston

Broadside, [1818]

June 2015

“If it pleases you to have another ‘Mayor Quincy’ in the family”: Colonel Samuel Miller Quincy describes his appointment as military mayor of New Orleans, 5 May 1865.

Letter, 5 May 1865

May 2015

"Business Above All": a German Medalist Commemorates the Lusitania Disaster

Cast bronze medal, 1915

March 2015

Adventures in Animal Husbandry: the Bull Admiral in Essex County

Broadside, 1824

February 2015

First to Fly for France: Frazier Curtis and the Birth of the Lafayette Flying Corps

Barograph, 1915

January 2015

A Street Sweeper's New Year's Greetings

Broadside, 1824

December 2014

Charles Bulfinch begins his Life’s Work

Engraving, 1790

November 2014

Is this a depiction of the Sand Creek Massacre? A view of U. S. cavalry advancing on a Cheyenne village by Bear’s Heart, 1877.

Ink, watercolor, colored pencil on wove paper, circa 1875-1878

September 2014

We Are Doing Our Bit: A 1918 Liberty Loan Poster with an African American Theme

Lithograph, [1918]

August 2014

"These Words deserve to be written in Letters of Gold . . . ." Boston printer James Franklin argues for the right to a trial by his peers, but apparently not for the protection of intellectual property.

Newspapers, 23-30 July 1722

July 2014

"Not a dream": A Portrait from Margaret Hall's World War I Memoir

Photograph, circa late 1918

June 2014

A "Barbarous Murder" on Boston Common: the Phillips-Woodbridge Duel

Broadside, 4 July 1728

May 2014

"O fairhaired northern hero With thy guard of dusky hue": proposed inscriptions for the Robert Gould Shaw Memorial on Boston Common

Letterbook, circa 24 June 1892

April 2014

"The question is whether the historico-literary line is practically worth following"

Manuscript, 2 June 1872

March 2014

The Trapp Family Singers sign Governor Leverett Saltonstall's guest book at the Massachusetts State House

Manuscript, circa 1940-1942

February 2014

"We welcome you, Lords of the Land of the Sun!" The menu for a banquet in honor of the Iwakura Mission during the Japanese embassy's visit to Boston in 1872.

Broadside on silk, 1872

January 2014

"I think we shall succeed in copper plate printing": Views of Hawaii Engraved at the Lahainaluna Seminary

Engraving, 1840

December 2013

1914 New Year’s greetings from Daniel Berkeley Updike to the Friends of the Merrymount Press

engraving, 1913

November 2013

An Unknown Love: the letters of Amy Lowell and Elizabeth Seccombe

letter, 1907

October 2013

“Wisdom is better than Rubies”: A Masterpiece of 19th–century Boston Furniture Making

Carved oak bookcase, 1880

September 2013

Fort Wagner Falls, 7 September 1863

Painting, 1863

August 2013

“New England Bravery”: Boston Celebrates the Most Notable Feat of Arms in American Colonial History

Broadside, 1745

July 2013

A Rhinoceros Tells Tales to a Soldier: the Childhood Imaginings of E. E. Cummings

Ink on paper, circa 1901

June 2013

Dorothy Quincy: Portrait of the Little Maid with her Parrot

Paintings, circa 1720

May 2013

“This Convulsed Commonwealth”: Daniel Shays Attempts to Call a Truce during Shays’ Rebellion, the Agrarian Revolt Named for Him

Letter, 1787

April 2013

"We searched its gaunt face for the mysteries of our destiny ...": Estelle Ishigo’s Scenes of a Japanese Internment Camp

Watercolor, 1943

March 2013

Washington Mazurkerwitz and Veronica Ryewhiskey: Recollections of the Polish Community in Salem

Letter (retained copy), 1930

February 2013

"Anti-Slavery Excitement" in Boston

Journal entry, 1835

January 2013

"Let all your voices, like merry bells, join loud and clear in the grand chorus of liberty:" Emancipation Proclaimed on New Year's Day 1863

Broadside, 1863

December 2012

Theodore Roosevelt Comes to Lunch—and the Massachusetts Historical Society Turns Itself Upside Down

Program, 1912

November 2012

"Under the Commission of Massachusetts We Shall March Forward to the Mountain Plains of the Aztecs:" Recruiting Volunteers for the First Massachusetts Volunteer Regiment during the Mexican War

Broadside, 1846

October 2012

In Death Lamented: A Mourning Ring for Mary Otis Gray

Ring, 1763

September 2012

"What do I owe to Taft?"

Letter, 1912

August 2012

"To the Farthest Ports of the Rich East": Salem and the Sumatra Pepper Trade

Map, 1827

July 2012

"The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America"

Letter, 1776

June 2012

"The Spirit of Party ... stupefies even those whom it cannot deprave"

Letter, 1810

May 2012

Starring Susannah Rowson

Broadside, 1796

March 2012

Regulations to be Observed by Persons Employed in the Boott Cotton Mills

Broadside, 1866

February 2012

A photographic portrait of Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., by Marian "Clover" Hooper Adams

Photograph, 1884

January 2012

Souvenir of a "Splendid Exhibition": Cupid as Drawn by Maelzel's Automaton, the Juvenile Artist

Drawing by automaton machine, 1835

December 2011

Phillis Wheatley's Earliest Poem

Diary page, 1773

November 2011

Recently Discovered: A Letter from W. E. B. Du Bois

Letter, 1895

October 2011

Ball's Bluff--The Civil War Comes Home to Massachusetts

Letter, 1861

September 2011

"There is nothing like having a good repository": Jeremy Belknap Describes the Mission of the Massachusetts Historical Society in 1795

Letter, 1795

August 2011

"We are going out to make calls": Life of a Victorian Girl

Crayon and pencil drawing, circa 1876-1800

July 2011

Ring Those Bells: Paul Revere, Bell Maker

Advertising card, circa 1800

June 2011

Crossed Swords: Prescott and Linzee Swords from the Battle of Bunker Hill

Plaque with two swords, circa 1730s-1750s and circa 1780s