My blog has been changed to make it more appealing for those who have New England ancestors and want to see the area through photos. Things I’ll include are typical white New England churches, libraries showing their genealogical collection, historical societies, cemeteries, war memorials, in general, anything to do with history.

For four years I’ve blogged mostly about my personal genealogy in New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire), New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada. I still will, can’t forget my own roots.

Please check out the labels on the right side for articles. The header tabs at the top are a work in progress.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Watertown Free Library, Watertown, Massachusetts. -- Remember When it was in the News?

Watertown, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts
Great Library website for doing Watertown genealogy.
This library is my 16th in my series of showing the genealogy collections at some New England libraries. I went to this one soon after the genealogy community, especially those on facebook, got wind that this library was going to "remove certain historical titles from the library's history room". There were a lot of unpleasant remarks from people who would never use this library, nor did they know the entire story. My photos illustrate that there is no room for more books, and in addition, take a peek at libraries in ConcordLittleton and LynnfieldMassachusetts.
The Watertown Free Library (original building, built in 1884 and the new addition) is one of the nicest libraries I've ever been in. The old and new merge beautifully.

Above and below are in the old section. The staircase was closed to patrons.

More of the old section, here I am facing the history and genealogy room behind the doors.
On a Saturday afternoon, we were the only ones there. The genealogy section was packed with books, and has very little, if any free space for additional items.


John D. Tew said...

What a beautiful library! Do you know if this was one of the 2,500+ libraries (1,689 in the U.S.) built between 1883 and 1929 with money donated by Andrew Carnegie? The old section reminds me of some Carnegie libraries I have seen elsewhere.

I fear that so-called brick and mortar libraries like these are going to find it harder and harder to stay open as the electronic age pushes forward and oh what a loss that will be!

Barbara Poole said...

Hi John, I just looked at the list of the Carnegie libraries, and this was not one of them. Since I saw this library, I've visited 3 other very impressive old libraries. Thanks for telling me about Andrew's libraries...gotta love that man.

Jana Last said...


I want to let you know that your blog post is listed in today's Fab Finds post at

Have a great weekend!

Barbara Poole said...

Jana, Thank you so much. I know reading a lot of blogs and then notifying the writer about making your list takes a chunk of time, so I am very appreciative.

Nancy said...

Hi, Barbara-- I came over from feedly to see the Acton Library which I think is absolutely gorgeous, but it seems like you must have unposted it.

This library is beautiful, too. The stones, the arches, all of it is wonderful. I'm trying to imagine living in a place with so much history! (And I can't quite do it.)

Barbara Poole said...

Nancy, it seems you were the 2nd person to see the Acton Library posted. I took it down because it was dated for 9/11, not appropriate for that date.

I had never been to this library, and was blown away by the architecture and beauty. Very hard to leave. The reference librarian was off, and we had the room to ourselves! Thank you for your nice words.