The mission of the Local History Room is to collect and preserve materials with historic significance concerning the inhabitants, government, institutions and environments of the Town of Billerica and its surrounding towns, as well as supporting materials throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and elsewhere. The Local History Room collection is intended to answer as many research questions on Billerica genealogy and history as possible.
The collection includes, but is not limited to, books, broadsides, manuscripts, maps, memorabilia, microfilm, newspapers, pamphlets, photographs, postcards, serials, town government documents, audio cassettes, videocassettes, CDs, DVDs and other electronic formats. The major emphasis of the collection is material of historical significance to Billerica as well as materials by and about the people of Billerica. Genealogies of families whose members have lived in Billerica and materials that may assist with genealogical research are included. Town committee minutes, town annual reports, local high school yearbooks, street lists, maps, phone books, voter registration lists, vital records of Massachusetts’ towns, local cemetery catalogs, and microfilm of Billerica newspapers are some specific examples of the collection.
All patrons are encouraged to visit the Local History Room to perform historical or genealogical research. The collection shall serve as an educational resource not only to teachers and students in the community but also to residents and visitors, thereby promoting greater appreciation of Billerica’s rich history. Because many of the items in the collection are fragile or irreplaceable, care and consideration must be used. With this in mind, the following procedures must be followed:
- The Local History Room is open to the public during regular library hours.
- Patrons using the Local History Room must sign in and out at the Reference Desk, where they must leave identification.
- Only pencils are permitted for taking notes when using Local History Room resources.
- No food or drink is permitted in the Local History Room.
- Patrons are asked to leave the materials they have used on the table in the Local History Room so that staff members can re-shelve items in the proper place and keep track of the number of items used.
- Photocopying of some of the local history collection is permitted as long as the copying is in compliance with federal copyright laws. In some cases, we have supplied a “use” copy of the original document. Researchers should ask before photocopying anything from the Local History collection.
The Library microfilm/microfiche reader is located behind the Reference Desk. This reader is available for public use. If requested, basic instructions for use will be given. Reels must be rewound and returned to the correct box after use. Patrons with their own reels of census data, etc. are allowed to use the microfilm reader.