History of Boston: Neighborhood Project

Newspapers and Databases

Boston Globe: click here for login information.
America’s Historical Newspapers (1690-2000)
EBSCO Discovery Service
Search all of the Putnam library’s online resources in one place.
Boston Public Library History Databases
Newspapers and databases from the BPL. (Sign up for a BPL ecard here.)


Older photos:
Boston Public Library Flickr: almost 100,000 photos
Old Boston Photograph Collection (BPL)
City of Boston Archives Flickr: over 12,000 photos
Historical Boston (Group)

Mostly modern photos:
Chinatown Boston (Group)
North End Boston (Group)
Fenway/Kenmore (Album)
Boston, Massachusetts (Group)
Boston Skyline (Group)

Library Branches

Boston Public Library Neighborhood Branches
These local branches are often a great source of information about their neighborhoods.

Historical Societies

North End Historical Society
Massachusetts Historical Society
Chinese Historical Society of New England
Boston National Historical Park
The Bostonian Society

Other Resources

Boston History Collaborative: Neighborhood Timelines
Extensive timelines covering the history of Boston’s neighborhoods.
Boston University Research Guide: Boston and Its Neighborhoods

Collects sources on past and present Boston, with a focus on its neighborhoods and their preservation.
City of Boston Landmarks Commission
Information, maps and publications about Boston’s historic neighborhoods.
City of Boston Neighborhoods
Current and historical information about Boston’s neighborhoods.
Public Art in Boston
Information about public art in the city; searchable by neighborhood.

Exploring Boston’s Neighborhoods Brochures:
East Boston
Hyde Park
Jamaica Plain
Mission Hill
North End
South Boston
West Roxbury/Roslindale


Research Tips and Tricks

  • Write down EVERYTHING as you encounter it, including where you found the information.
  • Use quotes if you want to search for an entire phrase together (eg. “Talya Sokoll” will only find results that have her name together, if you just search Talya Sokoll it will find all pages that have the word Talya and the word Sokoll anywhere on the page, not necessarily together.)
  • If you don’t quite find something the first time, find other ways of approaching the question. Use synonyms.
  • Think “what would the language on the page say?” rather than what you are looking for.
  • Bibliographies and works cited pages are great resources for finding more information.