The MHS library is open by appointment! However, the galleries remain closed. Learn more about appointments, online offerings and latest updates.[[no-close]]
As of September 7, 2021, the library is open on a by-appointment basis*, and the Reader Services staff is in the building to assist with your questions.
Here at our remote reference desk you will find a growing list of resources available digitally in a single, unified list. You can also find ways to contact the Reader Services staff if need additional assistance or cannot find what you are looking for her.
*See the Visiting the Library page for information about requesting an appointment.
The MHS library staff who can usually be found behind the reference desk at 1154 Boylston are also available to assist you with your remote research! Please don't hesitate to reach out for individualized assistance.
The MHS provides digital access to our collections in a variety of ways through thematic resources, digital publication projects, digital content linked to collection guides, digitized public domain materials, and subscription databases. We will be updating this section regularly as we work to make resources available during the MHS closure period.
Many catalog records for single items contain links to digital versions of those items. A search in our online catalog ABIGAIL for the phrase "Click here to view this item" in quotation marks using the Keyword Anywhere search option will return over 950 items that have digital versions linked to their catalog entries.
In recent years, the MHS has piloted full or partial digitization of manuscript and visual material collections using the online collection guides as a delivery system. Look for the blue digital content indicator next to the collection guide link and/or collection guide subsection as you browse in order to locate digital facsimiles.
The MHS has been publishing since 1791 and many of its pre-1930 (public domain) publications are available full-text online.
Visit our Online Resources portal to find a full slate of thematic resources range in type from interactive displays of entire collections to digital companion sites for past exhibitions.
The MHS offers digital editions of several documentary publications projects:
The MHS collections can be found in subscription databases that may be available through other research libraries. Catalog records in ABIGAIL indicate whether a specific collection has been included in a subscription database. Evans and Shaw-Shoemaker call numbers indicate whether a print item may be found in the Early American Imprints series I and II. Below is a list of the subscription databases that contain MHS materials.
For an itemized list of all MHS collections represented in these databases (with the exception of Early American Imprints) click here.