Self-Guided Tour: The Work of Revolution in Cambridge

Laundresses at a Revolutionary Army camp, circa 1780.

Introduction For many, the first image that comes to mind when thinking of Cambridge during the Revolutionary Era is that of General George Washington taking command of the Continental Army on Cambridge Common in July of 1775, under what would come to be known as the Washington Elm. Although we now know that this tale…

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History Café: Harriet Jacobs and the World of Abolitionist Cambridge Women

Harriet Jacobs is best known for her autobiography, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, in which she chronicles her enslavement in North Carolina, her subsequent period in hiding in a tiny attic garret, and her eventual escape north to freedom. But Jacobs was also for many years a resident of Cambridge, where she ran…

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Mercy Scollay and the Lifelong Work of Mending

By Katie Turner Getty, Independent Researcher and Writer When Mercy Scollay’s presumptive fiancé, Dr. Joseph Warren, was killed at the Battle of Bunker Hill in June of 1775, she was thrust into emotional and financial turmoil that would both parallel and outlast the political upheaval of the American Revolution. As the caretaker and surrogate mother…

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Event Recap: Politics Beyond the Parlor

Missed the event? Watch the video here! Funding for this project was made possible through the generosity of the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati On Monday, June 29, CHS held a Facebook Live event entitled “Politics Beyond the Parlor: The Loyalist Women of Cambridge.” During this event our spring semester intern, MaryKate Smolenski, spoke about…

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Self-Guided Tour: Loyalist Women of Cambridge

By MaryKate Smolenski, Tufts University Intern, June 2020 Download the tour here as a PDF with photos or without photos Funding for this project was made possible through the generosity of the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati For further reading, see: Who were the Loyalist Women of Cambridge? Introductory post and Part 1: Mary Browne…

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East Cambridge’s Road to Revolution

By Darleen Bonislawski, 2013 The events leading to the April 19, 1775, skirmish on Lexington Green began in East Cambridge. Years ago, while walking in East Cambridge (where I was born), I saw a stone marker on Second Street near the Probate Court, stating to all that “Near this spot 800 British soldiers from Boston…

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Self-Guided Tour: Cambridge and the American Revolution

Guided Tour

This tour hopes to shed light on the Revolutionary events that occurred in Cambridge. It is intended to personify its leaders, highlighting both their strengths and their humanity. It also hopes to take the viewer back to a time before the United States was born, before the Constitution was ratified, and before an American victory was assumed.

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Serjeant Family Letters, 1769-1840: Digital Collection

This collection was featured at our 2019 Open Archives. In 2019, the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati generously provided funding to digitize and transcribe the Cambridge Historical Society’s Serjeant Family Letters (formerly titled “The Winwood Serjeant Letters”). The collection is now accessible online (view it here). Winwood Serjeant (c.1730?-1780) was born in England and ordained…

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