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The HHS Archives

Research at the HHS Archives

The Hingham Historical Society Archives collects and preserves archival materials and media of historical significance relating to the history of Hingham and Hingham families. The archives serve as an educational resource to the community and the Historical Society encourages the use of its collection by those engaged in historical and genealogical research.

The HHS Archives is open to researchers, by appointment. If you wish to schedule time in the Archives for research, email our Registrar. If you cannot make it to the Archives or would prefer to have research done for you, download this form and return it as instructed, or call 781-749-7721 to make a research request.

Collections Summary

The HHS Archives compromises physical and digital documents, photographs, and books related to Hingham’s history, families and institutions. Manuscripts and printed material are physically organized into several broad categories, including: family papers, military records, Town of Hingham and other governmental records, documents concerning local educational (primarily, Derby Academy) and religious (in particular, Second Parish and New North Church) institutions, and materials concerning local political organizations, clubs, and societies. The archives also houses a comprehensive collection of local newspapers, a large photograph collection (prints and digital files), audio-visual materials, and electronic documents.

In addition, the HHS Archives includes and maintains several large collections spanning the above-described categories, including the John P. Richardson Collection, the Julian Loring notebooks, and the workpapers of several authors of published histories of Hingham, including  Francis R. and Lorena Laing Hart, Michael J. Shilhan, and George Lincoln.

We are currently digitizing and cataloguing thousands of photographs of Hingham neighborhoods, homes, and people dating from the 1860s to the current day, and our video collection includes personal oral histories of longtime Hingham citizens.  See some of our photographs on Flickr.

The Archives Library includes a large collection of Civil War material, donated in honor of Gen. Wilmon W. Blackmar, a significant collection of 18th and 19th century religious tracts, sermons, and devotional literature, many 19th century children’s books, and a variety of useful secondary resources on Hingham history.  We are working on making our library catalog accessible on-line.  Look for it here on the TinyCat platform, and check back often to see the catalog grow as we add records.

All archival material and Library books are catalogued electronically, using PastPerfect museum database software.