Marlborough's Historical Archives

The Society's archives contain documents and other artifacts dating to the early days of the founding of Marlborough.

Making the catalog of items available online is a long term project in order to assist those conducting research.  If you are interested in making an appointment to conduct research at the Society, or are interested in learning more about the terms for custom research conducted by members of the Society, contact us.

If you have items of historical interest related to Marlborough and would like to learn more about donating them to the Society, please contact us.

  • Maps--An index to all maps, including originals and reproductions.  Thanks to Sue Brigham and Joan Abshire for compiling this list.  (View the PDF updated August 22, 2007.)  Some of these and others are available here as high-resolution scans.
  • Photos--Includes the Rita and Joe Lapine collection of historic Marlborough photos.  The Lapines lived on Chandler Street.  Joe was a photographer for a local newspaper; Rita was the Marlborough City Clerk from 1962 - 1980.  In addition to the photo collection, in 1989 the Society received a generous bequest from the Lapine's estate to support the collection and the Society's programs.
View some photos from the Society's archives in this online slideshow.
  • Family archives--The Society has papers from several individuals and families, including . . .
Barnes Family
Bigelow-Cutting Family
Bigelow-Morse Family
Bigelow, Ella
Bigelow, John
Felton, Cyrus
Frye Family
Goodale Family
Gorman (Goulet) Family
Hazelton Family
Howe Family
Howe, Alice B.
Howe, Elton
Howe, Ernest
Kelley, Laura Bergeron
Lauraman Russell
Rice Family
Rice, Jabez III
Russell Family
Sherman-Longley Family
Stevens, Morton
Witt Family

Notes: This is not an exhaustive list, and the collections differ widely in terms of size, time period covered, cataloging, and transcription.

Special projects

  • The Ezra Cutting House (1877)--On July 26, 2005 a shoebox of materials that had been found in an attic crawlspace in the Ezra Cutting House at 22 Pleasant Street was turned over to the Marlborough Historical Society and was later the subject of a special project that discovered that the materials were from the Cutting and Bigelow families.  Read the report here.

Preserving your family's historic possessions

Consider these recommendations for preserving your family's historic possessions:

Donating items to the Society

Our thanks to these people and institutions for their recent donations to the Society:
  • Annie Murphy, executive director of the Framingham Historical Society, and her staff for donating a picture from a Framingham studio that was taken years ago of a resident of Marlborough, and for materials from the Hillside School for Boys.  (Donated in September 2008)
  • Bob Pierce of Worcester donated a "City of Marlboro Street Dept." lantern, pictured at right, that he found in his grandparent's house in Marlborough.  The lantern was made by Handlan in St. Louis.  (Donated in July 2008)
  • Leslie Leslie, former resident of Marlborough and member of the Marlborough Historical Society, donated Horatio Alger books.  (Donated in April 2008)
  • Tom Reilly, whose mother grew up in Marlborough.  It was her father that built the Marlborough Wire Goods Company.  Tom donated historical items from Marlborough Wire Goods and the tercentenary.  (Donated in March 2008)
  • Alan and Beverly Graham, of Marlborough, who donated photo albums.
  • Bill Corrie, of Sacramento, California, who sent a box of pictures and a scrapbook of old Marlborough families. (Donated in January 2008)
  • Nancy Colena, from New Hampshire, who donated a scrapbook her mother-in-law made that contains the WWII service announcements she clipped from the Marlborough Enterprise that cover 855 of Marlborough's sons and daughters.  The scrapbook (pictured at right) will be on display in November 2008 as part of our Salute to Veterans event.  Nancy also donated pictures of local businesses, including one that may be included in our 2009 calendar.  (Donated in January 2008)
  • John Haesche of Marlborough donated Frye cowboy boots.  (Donated in 2010)
  • Joseph Willis, grandson of former mayor, Joseph Ferrecchia, and the former mayor's daughters, Joanne Willis, Victoria McLaughlin, Claudia Ferrecchia, and Regina Ferrecchia donated the entirety of Mayor Joseph Ferrecchia's papers.  (Donated in 2010)
  • Durinda Wood and Daphne Stevens, granddaughters of John Rice, who donated clothes, paintings, photos, books, and papers from his estate on behalf of Constance Rice Woods, who specified that these items should go to the Society.  (Donated in 2010)  Pictured at right is the portrait of Susanna Rice and a two-piece gray dress owned by Julia Rice, sister of Edward Huntington Rice, both on display during the Society's 40th Anniversary Meeting on April 26, 2011.
  • Gaylord Corporation, who donated and shipped several cases of first-quality archival storage containers to us at no cost as they were clearing out older styles.  With our very small budget, what we received was many, many times what we could have afforded in a single year.  We received so many that we were able to also provide some to the Hudson and Westborough Historical Societies.  These materials will go a long way in helping us improve the storage of the papers, photographs, clothing, and other items that have been donated to the archives.
  • Duane Searles of Hudson, who donated materials from the family of former Mayor Louis Ingalls. (Donated in March 2011)
If you have items of historical interest related to Marlborough and would like to learn more about donating them to the Society, please contact us.

Do you know?

In addition to items for the archives, the Society also receives inquiries about the history of Marlborough and the people who lived here.  Often these come from people who have something that they think is connected to Marlborough, or someone in their family is connected to Marlborough, and they're looking for additional information.

Sometimes we have the information to help them immediately.  Often, however, we need to ask others, Do you know . . . ?

See if you know the answers to any of these inquiries.