Local History Resources

Photograph of a hand-stitched sampler picturing the Main Street of Williamsburg Mass. made in 1821 by Lucinda T. Hitchcock .1910 photograph of Main Street in Williamsburg, Mass. looking northwest. Trolley tracks and watering trough are shown.

Early views of the center of Williamsburg.

The Meekins Library holds a small collection of books, manuscripts, photographs, maps, illustrations and objects relating to the town of Williamsburg, Mass., all its villages, and local Pioneer Valley communities.  Materials chronicle the lives of the people and the community, document major events in the history of the town, and chronicle its evolution since its founding in 1771.
All collections are available for use in the Meekins Library.

Some materials are available virtually, through the Williamsburg Libraries website.

Some great sources for Williamsburg Local History are:

MassMoments provides insights into Massachusetts' history on a daily basis.

The Hampshire Room for Local History and Special Collections at the Forbes Library in Northampton offers information in person and online.

Preservation of Historic Materials

  • Digital Commonwealth - provides access to thousands of images, documents, and sound recordings that have been digitized by member institutions so that they may be available to researchers, students, and the general public. The contents of the former Digital Treasures Project has merged with the Digital Commonweath. 
  • Northeast Document Conservation Center - "Founded in 1973, NEDCC was the first independent conservation laboratory in the nation to specialize exclusively in treating collections made of paper or parchment, such as works of art, photographs, books, documents, maps, and manuscripts. Today, the Center offers conservation treatment, digital imaging, and audio preservation services, as well as preservation training, assessments and consultations, and disaster advice on collections. NEDCC is a trusted resource worldwide for information on the preservation of paper-based collections."

    Book ConservationPaper ConservationPhotograph ConservationImaging ServicesAudio PreservationPreservation Training

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    Digital Preservation Assessment Handbook

    A handbook that provides a framework and templates for all components of a digital preservation assessment. Intended for use by cultural heritage consultants and professionals who provide preservation assessment services, this resource was launched in 2019 as one of the products of a Preservation and Access Education and Training grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. View Online Version or download the accompanying templates: Assessment One-PagerPre-Visit Questionnaire, and Assessment Report.

    Digital Preservation Peer Assessment

    A workbook that guides two or more institutions in a conversation about digital preservation--successes, obstacles to growth, and next steps for improved long-term access to digital collections. This resource was launched in 2019 as one of the products of a Preservation and Access Education and Training grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. View Online Version

    SPANISH VERSION of the Digital Preservation Peer Assessment publication now available!
    Evaluación por pares para la preservación digital

    Spanish translation of NEDCC’s Digital Preservation Peer Assessment. View Online Version


    In December 2016, NEDCC received a National Endowment for the Humanities Preservation and Access Education and Training grant to prepare and present a collaborative Digital Preservation Assessment training program. This program approached digital preservation assessment and training through case-study assessments, shadowing opportunities, workshops, a training institute, and a final symposium. The products of the grant project are freely available online under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International license.

FREE Preservation resources:

  • National Archives - Family Papers - How to Preserve Family Archives (papers and photographs) "Maybe a relative sent you old letters, certificates, and family photographs and you are not sure what to do. Maybe you’re wondering how to save your child’s pictures and other mementos. These simple tips will help you preserve your family papers and photographs for the next generation. Preventing damage is the key to preserving your items." 
  • Northeast Document Conservation Center - Free Services