Events and Programs

NEHGS events in and around Boston

Learn with NEHGS experts and partner organizations at dozens of lectures, seminars, workshops, and other events, offered each year at the NEHGS research library and in the greater Boston area. Recent seminar topics have included Irish research, digital preservation, identifying family photographs, organizing your family history, writing and publishing your family history, and many more.

| May | June | Special Exhibits | Online Events |

May

May 24 - Mapping the Genome of Black and White Photography
In partnership with the Ticknor Society
Presented by Paul Messier
NEHGS, 99-101 Newbury Street, Boston
6:00 PM– Reception, 6:30-7:30 PM- Lecture; Cost: FREE

Join the Ticknor Society and New England Historic Genealogical Society for a special discussion on "the genetic makeup" of black and white photography. In the late 1990s, Paul Messier, now head of the Lens Media Lab (LML) at Yale University, began a collection of historic photographic papers with the aim of providing a baseline to date and authenticate photographic prints. Nearly twenty years and 5,000 samples later, this is possibly the largest collection of its kind in the world. Paul will discuss his work, the diversity and language of the medium, and how meaning and measurements can be drawn from it. Register for free today.

May 25 - Treacherous Beauty: A Scene of Sabotage and Deceit at America’s Founding
with author Stephen H. Case and playwright Patrick Gabridge
NEHGS, 99-101 Newbury Street, Boston
6:00–7:30 PM Cost: $30

Histories of the Revolutionary War have long honored heroines such as Betsy Ross, Abigail Adams, and Molly Pitcher. Yet few people know about one of the war’s most remarkable women, a beautiful Philadelphia society girl named Peggy Shippen. While war was raging between England and its rebellious colonists, Peggy befriended a suave British officer and then married a crippled revolutionary general twice her age. She brought the two men together in a treasonous plot that nearly turned George Washington into a prisoner and changed the course of the war. Peggy Shippen was Mrs. Benedict Arnold. The story of Peggy Shippen from the popular biography Treacherous Beauty has been adapted into a movie script. Join Stephen Case, co-author of Treacherous Beauty and playwright Patrick Gabridge, for a special evening featuring a conversation with the writers and a first look at scenes from this dramatic retelling. Register today.

June

June 3 - Driving America's Story: Plymouth 400 Commemorative License Plate Auction
In partnership with Plymouth 400
NEHGS, 99-101 Newbury Street, Boston
6:00–7:00 PM Cocktail hour and silent auction; 7:00 PM live auction Cost: FREE

Now’s your chance to secure a coveted low-numbered license plate! Or perhaps you’re interested in Plymouth 400 License Plate number 1620 or 2020? Massachusetts drivers have the opportunity to bid on numbers 1 through 99 of the Plymouth 400 License Plate, plus ten additional numbers representing historically significant dates; 1620, 1621, 1623, 1627, 1820, 1824, 1863, 1920, 1957, and 2020. Bidding culminates on June 3rd at a live auction event at the New England Historic Genealogical Society. Bidding may take place online, via telephone, or absentee ballot. Visit MyPlymouthPlate.org for more information. Registration for the live auction is required. Register today!

June 7 - New Visitor Tour
NEHGS, 99-101 Newbury Street, Boston
10:00 AM–11:00 AM Cost: FREE

This free orientation and tour introduces you to the resources available at the NEHGS research facility. Founded in 1845, NEHGS is the country's oldest and largest nonprofit genealogy library and archive. With more than 15 million artifacts, books, manuscripts, microfilms, journals, photographs, and records—and expert staff to help you navigate it all—NEHGS provides the access you need to research your family history. You do not have to be a member to participate. Tour attendees are welcome to use our resources following the tour. No registration necessary.

June 10 - NEHGS is coming to Washington! - Researching Early New England Ancestors
Registration includes five lectures, lunch, and an evening reception
Bellevue Club, 11200 Southeast Sixth Street, Bellevue, WA
9:00 AM - 6:30 PM Cost: $125

Spend the day with NEHGS and learn how to trace your early New England ancestors. Discover essential resources for 17th-c. New England research, understand early settlement and migration patterns, learn how to research your patriot ancestors, and more. Beyond lectures you will have the opportunity to chat with our genealogists and visiting staff, enter to win door prizes, take advantage of NEHGS membership specials, browse select publications, and enjoy a meal and special reception with fellow family historians. Further your study of genealogy with the experts in family history! View a full agenda and register today.

June 10 - Irish Study Group
NEHGS, 99-101 Newbury Street, Boston
9:30 AM-12:00 PM Cost: FREE

This Irish Genealogy Study Group gathers each month to talk about research problems and share solutions. Everyone is welcome and attendees are invited to stay and use the library resources afterwards. Contact Mary Ellen Grogan at megrogan@ix.netcom.com for more information. No registration necessary.

June 10, 17, and 24 - Building Your Genealogical Skills - Three-Session Course
Presented by Ann Lawthers, Genealogist
NEHGS, 99-101 Newbury Street, Boston
2:00 PM-4:00 PM Cost: $50

Take your research skills to the next level! With the sheer number of online resources at your fingertips, it's easy to dive in to your family history research without any formal training as a genealogist. Certainly you'll learn along the way, and devise your own methods, but it's also easy to become overwhelmed and form bad habits. Whether you are new to genealogy, want to refresh your skills, or learn best practices, this course will set you on the right path to getting the most out of your family history research. Topics include: how to record your findings, strategies for analyzing records, online research, and more. Each class includes skill-building exercises to help students apply their new found knowledge. Register today!

June 24 - New Visitor Tour
NEHGS, 99-101 Newbury Street, Boston
10:00 AM–11:00 AM Cost: FREE

This free orientation and tour introduces you to the resources available at the NEHGS research facility. Founded in 1845, NEHGS is the country's oldest and largest nonprofit genealogy library and archive. With more than 15 million artifacts, books, manuscripts, microfilms, journals, photographs, and records—and expert staff to help you navigate it all—NEHGS provides the access you need to research your family history. You do not have to be a member to participate. Tour attendees are welcome to use our resources following the tour. No registration necessary.

June 24 - NEHGS Art & Architecture Tour
NEHGS, 99-101 Newbury Street, Boston
2:00 PM–3:00 PM Cost: FREE

NEHGS has been collecting unique items of Americana and fine art since its founding in 1845. Learn the story behind items that illustrate life in early America. Tour attendees are welcome to use our resources following the tour. No registration necessary.

Special Exhibit

April 18 – October 31, 2017 – Voices of War: Americans in World War I, 1917-1918
Presented by NEHGS Special Collections, Jewish Heritage Center, and Historic Newton
NEHGS, 99-101 Newbury Street, Boston
Tuesday – Saturday 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Cost: Free and open to the public

One hundred years ago, America entered into a worldwide conflict unlike any it had known before. It was the Great War, the First World War, the War to End All Wars. Using letters, diaries, photographs, ephemera, and other special items from the collections of NEHGS, the Jewish Heritage Center, and Historic Newton, this exhibit brings to life the story of two American soldiers: Charles Judd Farley and Bernard Louis Gorfinkle. Farley was an ambulance driver with the American Expeditionary Forces and the United States Motor Transport Corps; Gorfinkle a Judge Advocate with the American Expeditionary Forces, 26th Yankee Division. Farley volunteered to serve with France in 1916; Gorfinkle traveled to France with his Division in 1917. Throughout the building, visitors will learn about the War through the experiences of these two men. Richly illustrated panels also tell of the American Red Cross, the role of women on the front lines, the Jewish American experience in the US military, and more. The exhibit is self-guided. If you would like to arrange for a guided tour or a group visit, please contact education@nehgs.org or call 617-226-1226.