Citation Guidelines

Below please find sample citations, in footnote form, for a variety of types of material found in the MHS collection.

If you have questions about a specific citation, please contact the reference librarian for individual assistance.

The Massachusetts Historical Society uses the Chicago Manual of Style in the crafting of our recommended citations. Regardless of your chosen citation style, the MHS requests that you take the time to verify each collection title in our online catalog ABIGAIL. This will ensure that future researchers will be able to follow your citations and locate the materials.

Citations should include:

●     A description of the item

●     The name of the author

●     The item date

●     The collection in which the item is found

●     The name of the repository (Massachusetts Historical Society).

 

Artifacts and photographs excepted, the MHS does not recommend the use of call numbers (e.g. Ms. N-123; Bdses-Sm 1884) in crafting citations.

If you consulted the microfilm edition of a collection, please cite the microfilm edition rather than the original manuscripts in your citations. For the suggested format, see Microfilm Editions below.

Sample Citations

Artifacts

Surgeon’s kit belonging to William Swift, M.D., United States Navy, War of 1812, artifact number 0057, Massachusetts Historical Society.

Bound Volumes

William M. Bell orderly book, 14 July 1779, William M. Bell Orderly Book, Massachusetts Historical Society.

Correspondence

Charles Wiley to Richard Henry Dana, Sr., 29 May 1821, Dana Family Papers, Massachusetts Historical Society.

Electronic Editions

John Adams to Abigail Adams, 14 January 1797 [electronic edition], Adams Family Papers: An Electronic Archive, Massachusetts Historical Society, http://www.masshist.org/digitaladams.

Microfilm Editions

Caroline Wells Healey Dall journal, 9 October 1867, volume J27, Caroline Wells Healey Dall Papers, microfilm edition, 45 reels (Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 1981), reel 36.

Photographs

“The Branded Hand of Captain Jonathan Walker,” daguerreotype by Southworth & Hawes, 1845, Daguerreotype Collection, photograph number 1.373, Massachusetts Historical Society.

Titled Documents

“Dedicatory Address of President Lincoln,” [unpublished manuscript] by unknown author, [November 1863], Edward Everett Papers, Massachusetts Historical Society.

Untitled Documents

Inventory of books received by Thomas Jefferson from the George Wythe estate, circa September 1806, page 1, Coolidge Collection of Thomas Jefferson Manuscripts, Massachusetts Historical Society.

Works of Art

Elizabeth “Mumbet” Freeman, watercolor on ivory by Susan Anne Livingston Ridley Sedgwick, 1811, Massachusetts Historical Society.

Upcoming Events

Modern American Society and Culture Seminar

Creepy Crawling in Los Angeles: The Manson Family and Cultural Mixing as Apocalypse

24Apr 5:15PM 2018

Charles Manson made national news in 1969 when several “Family” members were arrested for murder, but by then he was well-established in Los Angeles. This ...

Conversation; This Land is Your Land

This Land is Your Land Series: Public Land

25Apr 6:00PM 2018
There will be a pre-talk reception at 5:30.

Massachusetts has undertaken large scale preservation of open space by government entities. The Boston Public Garden, the Emerald Necklace, the first American public ...

Early American History Seminar

The Time of Anarchy: the Susquehannock Scattering and the Crisis of English Colonialism, 1675-1685

1May 5:15PM 2018

Part of a larger book project, this paper argues that the seemingly distinct conflicts across the English colonies in the 1670s were actually connected by the political ...

From our Blog

Barbara Hillard Smith’s Diary, April 1918

Today we return to the 1918 diary of Newton teenager Barbara Hillard Smith. You may read our introduction to the diary, and Barbara’s January, February, and March entries, here: January | ...

This Week @ MHS

As preparations for our upcoming exhibit continue, it is a pretty quiet week at the Society as far as programs go. Here is what we have on tap: - Tuesday, 24 April, 5:15PM : The seminar this week is ...

Read more from our blog

Have you seen?