Manuscripts

The richest primary resources for Old Dartmouth local history, New Bedford whaling, industrial and social history, biographical information and marine archives are to be found in the manuscript collections of the Research Library and Archives.

Manuscripts

The richest primary resources for Old Dartmouth local history, New Bedford whaling, industrial and social history, biographical information and marine archives are to be found in the manuscript collections of the Research Library and Archives.

Including late 17th century property deeds and indentures through the various mercantile investments and business practices of the agents of whaling and merchant voyages, church records, architecture, personal papers of significant (and lesser known) people of the 19th century and industrial, banking, and modern whaling documentation extending well into the 20th century, the manuscript collection continues to serve and inform the scholarly community.

The manuscript collections consist of over 140 distinct collections, organized with finding aids including notes historical, and where applicable, biographical. The finding aids include the scope and content of the collections and in many cases have subject listings and other forms of indexing. Not all of the manuscripts in the archive have finding aids. Many are cataloged discretely and ought to be searched through the main library database.

Please note: Access to unprocessed collections is at the discretion of the Museum Librarian.