A Brief History of Zoning in Cambridge

By Doug Brown, 2016 Just as we have a place for everything in a well-ordered home, so we should have a place for everything in a well-regulated town. What would we think of a housewife who insisted on keeping her gas range in the parlor and her piano in the kitchen?–Cambridge Tribune, March 8, 1919 In 1919, no city understood … Read More

Self-Guided Tour: The History of Candy Making in Cambridge

By Natalie Moravek, Intern In 1946, sixty-six candy manufacturing companies were listed in the phone book. The candy industry in the area began in 1765, on the banks of the Neponset River in Dorchester, when an Irish immigrant named John Hannon established a chocolate mill. The large and populated city made an ideal setting for a new industry to start … Read More

Why the “Longfellow” Bridge?

By Franklin Reece, 2015 In 1905, the magnificent Longfellow Bridge was nearing completion, even as the Cambridge Historical Society came to life. And today, 110 years later, the iconic bridge is being restored, just as the society enters an exciting new stage of life. The bridge was an engineering marvel. Designed to mimic the artistic style of the bridges of … Read More

New Wine in Old Bottles

By Michael Kenney, 2017 Sunday brunch time and weekday happy hours, the courtyard at the corner of Broadway and Hampshire Street is a lively place, with hipsters and families enjoying the bars and restaurants grouped around the open brick-paved space. Hard to believe, but it was even more bustling a century ago, when shifts of workers came and went at … Read More

Cambridge Day: Historical Society’s Kendall Square events to look at what made it happen, what’s next

Cambridge Day masthead

September 30, 2017 By Marc Levy “Biotech has helped transform Kendall Square into what’s been called ‘the most innovative square mile on the planet’ – but, well, why? Why here and not somewhere else? And what’s next? “The Cambridge Historical Society asks these question at two free events in October, starting with Monday’s ‘Why Here?’ and finishing Oct. 18 with … Read More

10/02/17: Past — “Why Here?” – The first installment of the 2017 Fall Symposium

October Symposium Postcard

Update – watch the event: Our 2017 Symposium’s theme is “Made in Cambridge: What’s Happening in Kendall Square?” On Monday, October 2nd at the Cambridge Public Library, we held the first part of our 2017 Fall Symposium: “Why Here?” Our moderator was Henrietta Davis, former Mayor of Cambridge, and our speakers were Sam Lipson, Director of Environmental Health at Cambridge … Read More

Past “Whose Kendall?” History Café and Self-Guided Tour

Kendall Square Then and Now

Join us Tuesday, 9/12/17 at Cambridge Brewing Company for a Self-Guided Tour ​& Talk about ​this dramatically changing neighborhood of Cambridge with Daniel Berger-Jones​ from Cambridge Historical Tours​ ​and Peter Abair​ from Mass Bio. Cambridge Brewing Company is located at 1 Kendall Square, Cambridge, MA 02139. Click here to buy tickets Check back soon for more updates.

Cars in Cambridge by Doug Brown

With air bags, anti–lock brakes, traction control, and GPS, the Uber driver of today operates a very different machine from the family chauffeur’s open–topped horseless carriage of 100 years ago. But regardless of the generation, Cantabrigians have always loved working on cars. Today that tinkering is just as likely to occur in a university lab as in a backyard garage. … Read More