- Search the History Cambridge website. On the top right of our site you’ll see headers. Click on the magnifying glass next to the word “Donate”
- Search the History Cambridge Flickr page: Here
- Search The Proceedings of the Cambridge Historical Society 1906–1979. When the Cambridge Historical Society was founded in 1905, members would meet in private homes and on the Harvard campus and read to each other articles they had written about Cambridge history. Between 1906 and 1979, these lectures were published as The Proceedings of the Cambridge Historical Society.
- Search the Historic Cambridge Newspaper Collection. This database contains all historic Cambridge newspapers that are in the Cambridge Public Library’s collection and do not have copyright restrictions. Newspapers, which are fully searchable and freely available, include the Cambridge Chronicle (1846-1923), the Cambridge Press (1887-1889), the Cambridge Sentinel (1903-1912), and the Cambridge Tribune (1887-1923), covering major historical events from Cambridge’s incorporation as a city in 1846 to the early years of prohibition.
- Search the Burial Inventory of Catholic Mount Auburn Cemetery. Most of the 23,840 people buried in the cemetery are from Boston’s North End, East Boston, Charlestown, and Cambridge and were buried between 1854 and 1947. Burials at Catholic Mount Auburn Cemetery are often noted on death certificates as “Mount Auburn,” which many researchers and genealogists believe to be Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, leading to confusion when there is no record of the burial at Mount Auburn Cemetery. Be sure to check both cemeteries’ records when researching burials. Watch a video about the cemetery here.
- Search Cambridge City Directories. Search, browse, and download Cambridge’s City Directories published between 1848 and 1910. These directories contain street listings by last name and by street, business directories and advertisements, maps, ward maps, listings of city services and city officials, schools and colleges (private and public), associations, churches, and clubs. They also contain census data like state and city population totals.
- Search AfriGeneas. Afrigeneas is a site devoted to African American genealogy, to researching African Ancestry in the Americas in particular, and to genealogical research and resources in general. It is also an African Ancestry research community featuring the AfriGeneas mail list, the AfriGeneas message boards, and daily and weekly genealogy chats.
- Watch Healing the Historical Trauma of Slavery Through Genealogical Research
- Watch Linked Descendants: African American Genealogy Prior to 1870
- Search ProQuest African American Heritage. African American Heritage is a groundbreaking digital resource exclusively devoted to African American family history research. It provides users a dedicated resource that not only brings together records critical to African American family research; but also connects them to a community of research experts, whose mentoring and assistance can frequently be the difference between research success and futility. Minuteman Library card holders can log on here.
- Search the Middlesex County Registry of Deeds. The registry of deeds maintains all land ownership records for Middlesex County. Note that researchers must do their own research; the registry does not answer phone or main inquiries. Middlesex County Courthouse, 208 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA 02141; (617) 494-4500
- Search the Massachusetts Archives at Columbia Point. The State Archives contain vital statistics from 1841-1905, early census records, early tax records, Port of Boston passenger lists, and some early land, military, and court records. For vital statistics prior to 1841, contact individual city or town clerks. 220 Morrissey Blvd, Boston, MA 02125; (617) 727-2816
- Contact the Cambridge City Clerk. The City Clerk will search city records for Cambridge births, deaths, and marriages dating back to 1635. Write or phone for fee schedules. Researchers may do their own research free during office hours. 795 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139; (617) 349-4260
- Contact the Registry of Vital Records and Statistics (Massachusetts). The State Registry contains records of births, marriages, and deaths since 1906. There is an index for divorces after 1950. Research Office, 470 Atlantic Avenue (2nd floor), Boston, MA 02210-2224; (617) 753-8600
- Contact the National Archives – New England Region. The National Archives contain United States census records, 1790-1920, naturalization records, passenger arrival lists (New England ports only), some Revolutionary War military and pension records, and access by microfilm to the holdings of the National Archives in Washington, D.C. note: The National Archives do not contain any vital records. 380 Trapelo Rd., Waltham, MA 02154; (781) 647-8100
- Contact the Middlesex County Probate Court. The court maintains records of all wills probated in Middlesex County. Searchers must do their own research; the court does not answer phone or mail inquiries. Middlesex County Courthouse, 208 Cambridge Street, 2nd & 3rd floors, Cambridge, MA 02141; (617) 494-4545
- Search the Boston Public Library. The Social Science Department contains published family histories. The Microtext Department contains, on microfilm or microfiche: federal census records for New England, ship passenger lists for New England ports, court and probate records for Middlesex, Suffolk and Hampshire counties, many Massachusetts town records, city directories from over 200 cities and towns in the U.S., including Cambridge, and the largest collection of microfilmed newspapers in the state. 666 Boylston Street; Boston, MA 02117; (617) 536-5400
- Search the New England Historic Genealogical Society. NEHGS contains copies of Massachusetts vital records up to 1895, and a large collection of local and family histories of the United States, Canada, Great Britain, and Ireland. Non-members are admitted to use the Society’s collection for a daily fee. The Society also provides a list of professional researchers. 101 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116; (617) 536-5740
- Find a Family History Center. The Family History Centers give access to the massive genealogical databases of the Family History Library of the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints in Salt Lake City, Utah. The extensive national and international records collected by the church are not limited to Mormons, and are of great value to all genealogists. Instruction in searching the records is given at the local Family History Centers.
- Search the Boston Public Library Newspaper Database. You can search the BPL’s newspaper databases remotely by applying for a BPL e-card. Search the historic Boston Globe (1872-1979), the Boston Herald (2004-2011), the Worcester Telegram and Gazette (1989-present), and America’s Historical Newspapers (1690-1922).
- Search the Boston TV News Digital Library. This online digital television news collection offers freely searchable content from six local television programs: Boston Public Library’s WHDH film collection (1960- mid-1970s), Cambridge Community Television (1988 to 1999), Northeast Historic Film’s WCVB film collection (1970-1979), and WGBH-produced The Reporters (1970-1973), Evening Compass (1973-1975) and the Ten O’Clock News.
Other Online Resources:
The Records of the Town of Cambridge (formerly New-towne) Massachusets: 1630: Google Books
Records of the Church of Christ at Cambridge in New England, 1632-1830, comprising the ministerial records of baptisms, marriages, deaths, admission to covenant and communion, dismissals and church proceedings. [Internet Archive]
Epitaphs from the Old Burying-Ground in Cambridge, Volumes 1 [Internet Archive]Epitaphs from the Old Burying-Ground in Cambridge, Volumes 2 [Internet Archive]
History of Cambridge, Massachusetts. 1630-1877: With a Genealogical Register – Lucius Robinson Paige: Google Books