The Historical Society of Old
Yarmouth collects objects and items of all types that pertain to Yarmouth’s
history. The Society maintains three separate collections: museum
collection, library and archives, and photographs. Access to the collection
is provided to scholars and researchers by appointment. The Society is
always anxious to learn about items pertaining to Yarmouth’s history and
gratefully accepts donations of Yarmouth materials. If you have information
regarding a Yarmouth object or would like more information on donating items
to the Historical Society, please contact us at 508.362.3021 or email
Museum Collection consists of objects, domestic furnishings, artwork,
costumes, textiles, maritime-related artifacts, and other items.
Highlights of the collection are kitchen-related items from the
18th and 19th centuries; 19th century clothing; 19th century children’s
toys; Native American stone artifacts from Cape Cod; and maritime
artifacts and artwork. A
portion of the museum’s collection is on display within the context of
the Captain Bangs Hallet House Museum, while the remainder is stored and
utilized as needed for special exhibitions and displays.
Each year, HSOY sponsors a special theme tour and exhibition within
the Captain Bangs Hallet House drawing from our own collections, as well
as the collections of private individuals and neighboring institutions.
maintains a collection of historical and current photographs.
The historical photograph collection includes nearly 3000 images of
Yarmouth Port, South Yarmouth and West Yarmouth.
Among these images are those from the outstanding Matthews C.
Hallet Collection and several photographs taken by the noted photographer
Edwin Hale Lincoln. All of the
Society’s images are individually stored and cataloged and an extensive
index is available for locating particular subjects, people and places.
The collection also includes hundreds of current photographs of
Yarmouth’s historical buildings and homes, outbuildings, scenic vistas,
markers and monuments. These
current photographs have all been taken within the last five years and
help not only in the identification of old photographs, but also document
Yarmouth around the year 2000 for the use of future historians.
For more on using or obtaining copies from the HSOY Photograph
Collection, please see the Photograph Use Policy.
The Library and Archives
Collection of the Historical Society of Old Yarmouth is constantly
growing. The library features
books relating to Yarmouth’s history and the history of Cape Cod and the
Plymouth Colony, maritime history, general reference books on history and
antiques, and a genealogy section that includes more than 1,000 completed
family group sheets on Yarmouth families.
The library also contains a vertical file and a pamphlet file.
A recent addition to our library is the “Yarmouth Houses” file,
which has files on most of the older homes in the town of Yarmouth
including information compiled for the National Register.
Additionally, the Society has copies of historical maps from 1795,
1830, 1858 and 1880 and a Map Book containing copies of maps for each
village from the oldest maps up to the present day.
controlled archival storage at the Gorham Cobbler Shop contains
correspondence, business records, marine logs and ledgers, family papers and
various other manuscripts. Document collections include: Berry Family
Collection; Cyrus Sears Collection, 1861-1882; Lucy Davis Collection,
1853-1904; Bray Family Collection, 1713-1961; Caroline R. Siebens
Collection; Thacher Family Collection; Thacher-Perera Collection; Bangs
Hallet Collection; Annette Kelley Collection; E. Lawrence Jenkins
Collection; Matthews Family Collection; Dorothy Howes Anderson Collection;
350th Anniversary Collection; Brevet Major General Joseph Eldridge Hamblin
Collection; Elkanah and Sturgis Crowell Collection; Daniel Wing Collection;
Rufus White Collection; Kenneth Baxter Crowell Collection; and the Calvin
Tilden Collection. Other significant collections include the maritime
documents of the shipping firm of Howes and Crowell, as well as numerous
ship logs, ledgers, charts, and other shipping documents. Various copies of
the Yarmouth Register and Barnstable Patriot are available from the 1830s to
the 1880s. Also, certain Yarmouth Town Records prior to 1860 are available
on microfilm. For more on using the HSOY Library and Archives, please see
copyright ©2001 - 2008, all
The Historical Society of Old Yarmouth, PO Box 11, Yarmouth Port, MA 02675