Resources Documenting Dorchester History

Alpabetical by title, books first

Hanna, William F. Abraham among the Yankees. (Taunton: The Old Colony Historical Society, 1983) Includes Abraham Lincoln’s visit to Dorchester.

“Ancient Paper Hangings in Dorchester, Massachusetts.” New England Historical and Genealogical Register. 19 (1865), 170.

Clapp, David. The Ancient Proprietors of Jones Hill, Dorchester … (Boston, 1883)

Blake, James. Annals of the Town of Dorchester. Collections of the Dorchester Antiquarian and Historical Society. (Boston: D. Clapp, Jr., 1846)

Harris, B.W. Annexation Question. Closing Argument of B.W. Harris, Esq., for the Remonstrants against the Annexation of Dorchester. (Boston, 1869)

Boston, Mass. Cemetery Department. Annual Report of the Cemetery Department of the City of Boson for the fiscal year 1904-1905. (Boston, 1905).  Includes section on Dorchester North Cemetery

Stark, James Henry. Antique Views of Ye Towne of Boston. (Boston, 1882) and later editions. Contains illustrations of Dorchester scenes and houses.

Tucci, Douglas Shand. Ashmont: An Historical Guide to Peabody Square, Carruths Hill, and Ashmont Hill and the architecture … (Dorchester: Dorchester Historical Society, 1991)

Merrick, Lizabeth S. Levy. Be There Then: A Guide to Exploring Greater Boston’s Historic House Museums. – includes Dorchester

Ryan, Dennis P. Beyond the Ballot Box: A Social History of the Boston Irish, 1845-1917. (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1983). Brief references to Dorchester with one page devoted to Dorchester resident Margaret Foley who became a social activist.

Richardson, Joan. A Bibliography on Dorchester History. (Boston: Dorchester/Mattapan Preservation Survey, 1977). 28 p.

Massachusetts. Senate. Senate Bill May 6, 1869 to annex Dorchester to Boston.

Blue Book of Dorchester. 1885-1886, 1892, 1894, 1900, 1902, 1904, 1908, 1910, 1913, 1915.

Dorchester Medical Club. Book of the Dorchester Medical Club. (1898)

Boston Directories – many available online at Boston Athaeneum – the directory has entries for people who lived or worked in Boston, so there are entries for people who lived in Dorchester  even before annexation in 1870 if they worked in Boston.

Cheney, Frank and Anthony Sammarco. Boston in Motion. (Charleston, SC : Arcadia Publishing, 1999)

Cheney, Frank. Boston’s Red Line, Bridging the Charles from Alewife to Braintree. (Charleston, SC, Arcadia, 2002)

A Brief History of the Dorchester Conversation Club: Given before its Past and Present Members at the Residence of Thomas J. Allen, on Nov. 14, 1878, its thirtieth anniversary by Ebenezer Clapp. (Boston, 1878)

Tucci, Douglas Shand. Built in Boston: City and Suburb, 1800-2000. (Boston, 1999)

A Catholic Stronghold and Its making: a History of St. Peter’s Parish, Dorchester, Massachusetts and of its first rector, The Rev. Peter Ronan by S.L. Emery. (Boston, 1910)

Hentoff, Nat. Boston Boy. (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1986). Technically, he seems to have lived in Roxbury but took part in the life of Grove Hall.

Bacon, Edwin M., ed. Boston of Today. (Boston: Post Publishing Co., 1892).  Has a section on Dorchester

“Celebrating the Neponset.” Boston Globe. July 7, 2001.

The centennial anniversary of the birth of Edward Everett / celebrated by the Dorchester Historical Society, April 11, 1894.  (Boston, 1895)

Harris, Thaddeus M. Chronological and Topographical Account of Dorchester. (Boston, 1803)

Train, Charles R. Closing Argument in Behalf of the Petitioners for the Annexation of Dorchester to Boston. (Boston, 1869)

Walczak, William. Codman Square. See website

[Front Street Corporation]. Collection of Facts and Documents Relative to the Project of a Bridge from South Street in Boston to Dorchester Neck, and the Annexation of That Peninsula to the Town of Boston. (Boston: E. Lincoln,, 1805)

Russell, Francis. “The Coming of the Jews.” Antioch Review 15 (1955-1956) 19-38.

Lukas, J. Anthony. Common Ground. (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1985). A study of racial strife in Boston in 1960s and 1970s with scattered references to Dorchester plus p. 511-535 telling the story of a Black family’s pain and suffering as a result of living in Codman Square in a home east of Washington Street in the 1970s.

Humphrey, Thomas J. 1992. A Condensed History of the Dorchester and Milton Branch Railroad. Unpublished. footnoted in More Than One River, UMass Amherst dissertations 2009.

Trumbull, James Hammond. “Conference of the Elders of Massachusetts with the Reverend Robert Lenthal of Weymouth, Held at Dorchester, December 10, 1639.” Congregational Quarterly (1887) 232-248.

Breault, R.F., M.G. Cooke, and M. Merrill. 2004a. Data on sediment quality and concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls from the Lower Neponset River, Massachusetts, 2002–03. U.S. Geological

Survey Open-File Report 2004-1280.

Levine, Hillel and Lawrence Harmon. Death of an American Jewish Community. A Tragedy of Good Intentions. (New York, 1992).

Greene, Jeremiah Everts. Debt of Massachusetts to Dorchester: Town Meeting and Free School. Address in Pilgrim Church, Dorchester, January 27, 1894. (Worcester, 1894)

A Decent Place to Live by Jane Roessner. (Boston, 2000)

Pierce, John. A Discourse Delivered at Dorchester, on June 17th,1830, to Commemorate the Completion of the Second Century from Its Settlement by Our Pilgrim Fathers. (Boston, 1830)

Sammarco, Anthony Mitchell. Dorchester. Images of America. (Charleston, SC, Arcadia, 1995)

Boston 200 Dorchester. Neighborhood History Series. (Boston, 1976)
pdf version available at

Sammarco, Anthony Mitchell. Dorchester Volume II. Images of America. (Charleston, SC, Arcadia, 2000)

Sammarco, Anthony Mitchell. Dorchester Then & Now. Images of America. (Charleston, SC, Arcadia, 2005)

Adams, George. Dorchester and Milton Business Directory. (Boston, 1850)

Dorchester and Quincy Directory, 1868-9. Boston, 1868.

Bolstis, Edith R. “Dorchester Before Annexation.” Our Boston, 1 (April, 1926).

Barrows, Samuel J. “Dorchester in the Colonial Period”, chapter in vol. 1 of Memorial History of Boston.Justin Winsor, ed.  (Boston, 1880)   pdf available at

Barrows, Samuel J. “Dorchester in the Provincial Period,” chapter in vol. 2 of Memorial History of Boston. Justin Winsor, ed.  (Boston, 1881)
pdf available at

Barrows, Samuel J. “Dorchester in the Last Hundred Years,” chapter in vol. 3 of Memorial History of Boston. Justin Winsor, ed.  (Boston, 1881)  pdf available at

Dorchester’s 350th Anniversary Calendar & Appointment Book by Dorchester 350th, Inc. Publication Date: [1979]

Dorchester, Past and Present : a Sermon Preached in the Second Church, Dorchester, December 26, 1869 by Rev. James H. Means. (Boston, 1870)

Salls, Timothy. “Dorchester Antiquarian and Historical Society Records [at the New England Historic Genealogical Society.]” in New England Ancestors 2 (Summer 2002): 52, 60. Reprinted in the Fall 2002 newsletter of the Dorchester Historical Society.

Bolster, Edith R. “Dorchester Before Annexation.” Our Boston, vol. 1, no. 5. April, 1926, (Boston: The Women’s Municipal League of Boston, 1926),  7-12.

Trask, William Blake. “Dorchester Christian Names.” New England Historical and Genealogical Register (1900) vol. 54 213.

The Dorchester-Columbia Point Task Force Report on the Iimpact of UMass in Dorchester / prepared with the technical assistance of Justin Gray Associates. Publication Date: [1973]

Dorchester Day: Celebration of the Two Hundred and Seventy-seventh Anniversary of the Settlement of Dorchester, June 8th, 1907, Including Also a Brief Description of the Origin of Dorchester Day and the Three Preceding Celebrations by Dorchester Historical Society and James Henry Stark.  (Boston, 1907)

Dorchester Day; Celebration of the Two Hundred and Seventy-ninth Anniversary of the Settlement of Dorchester, June 5, 1909 by Dorchester Historical Society and James Henry Stark. (Boston, 1909)

Richards, Eugene. Dorchester Days. (Wollaston, Mass: Many Voices Press, 1978)

Boston Redevelopment Authority. Dorchester/Fields Corner: District Profile and Proposed 1978-1980 Neighborhood Improvement Program 1977

Morgan, Ernest H. (ed.) Dorchester Gentlemens Driving Club Year Book. (1905)

Hansen, Ann Natalie. The Dorchester Group: Puritanism and Revolution. (Columbus, OH: At the Sign of the Cock, 1987)

Dorchester House Multi-Service Center: One Hundred Years of Community Service, 1887-1987 by Linda Genovese and Elizabeth Mock. Publication Date: 1987

Dorchester Book. Illustrated. (Boston, Branch Alliance of Christ Church, 1899). Attributed to Elizabeth W. Hazard.

The Dorchester illustrated almanac for 1878. (1878?)

Everett, Edward. Dorchester in 1630, 1776 and 1855. An Oration Delivered on the Fourth of July, 1855. (Boston: David Clapp, 1855)

Dorchester in the Old Bay Colony. (Dorchester: Tribune Publishing Company, 1972)

Dorchester Lower Mills. An Urban Village in the 1980s: A Revitalization Strategy. (Boston, 1979)

Sheehan, Robert Louis. A Dorchester Marines WWII. A Sequel to Dorchester Streets. (Boston: Dober Dan Press, 2002.)

Dorchester North Burying Ground by Rosalind Pollan, report preparation and Ellen Lipsey, project manager. Publication Date: 1986

Dorchester Old and New, 1630-1930. Dorchester Tercentenary Committee. (Dorchester, 1930)

Means, James Howard. Dorchester, Past and Present: A Sermon Preached in the Second Church, Dorchester, December 26, 1869. (Boston: Moses H. Sargent, 1870)

Taylor, Earl. Dorchester Postcards. Postcard History Series. (Charleston, SC., Arcadia, 2005)

A Dorchester Religious Society of Young Men by Albert Matthews. (Boston, 1905 or 1906)

Matthews, Albert. “A Dorchester Religious Society of Young Men.” New England Historical and Genealogical Register 60 (1906) 30-40.

Sheehan, Robert Louis. Dorchester Streets. The Story of the Sheehan Family in Dorchester, 1921-1943. (Boston: Dober Dan Press, 1999).

Ferguson, Faith I.T.  Dorchester’s Collections: Illustrating a Community, 1630-1930.  (Dorchester: Dorchester Historical Society, 2011)

For a Guide to the Town of Dorchester records, see the following from the city archives

Dorchester Town Records Fourth Report of the Record Commissioners of the City Boston. 2nd edition, 1883. (Boston: Rockwell and Churchill, 1883).  (includes entries from 1630s to late 1600s)
pdf available at

Dorchester. Dorchester Births, Marriages and Deaths to the End of 1825. (Boston, 1924) pdf available at

Dorchester. Vital Records of the Town of Dorchester from 1826 to 1849. (Boston, 1905) pdf avaiable at

Dorchester town reports, 1853-1866 / printed by order of the town. Publication Date: 1853-1866

Dorchester, Town of. Annual Report Receipts and Expenditures 1839-1869. digital versions are available at

Dorchester, Town of. The Taxable Valuation of the Polls and Estates of the Inhabitants of the Town of Dorchester for 1849, 1850, 1853, 1855, 1861, 1865, 1869. (Boston, 1849-1869)

Dorchester, Town of. School Committee.  Annual Reports 1848, 1851, 1852, 1853, 1855, 1858, 1859, 1860, 1862, 1863, 1864, 1865, 1866, 1867, 1868, 1869  [these may refer to Town annual reports and not the school committee]

Dorchester, Town of. School Committee.  Regulations. 1847, 1856

Blake, Francis E.  Dorchester Neck. (Now South Boston.) The Raid of British Troops, February 13, 1776. Reprinted from the New-England Historical and Genealogical Register, April, 1899. With an Account of the First Settlements at the Neck. (Boston, 1899)

Boston Redevelopment Authority. Dorchester/Uphams Corner: District Profile and Proposed 1978-1980 Neighborhood Improvement Program (1977)  pdf version available at

Boston Redevelopment Authority. Dorchester/Uphams Corner: District Profile and Proposed 1978-1980 Neighborhood Improvement Program. (1979)pdf version available at

Whitman, Mrs. Bernard. “Early Dorchester” in New England Magazine, May, 1891.

Trask, William Blake. “Early Matters Relating to Dorchester.” New England Historical and Genealogical Register. 40:253

Littlefield, George Emery. Early Schools and School-Books of New England. (New York: Russell & Russell, 1965). Dorchester’s Mather School is the descendant of the first school in Massachusetts supported by the public treasury

Drake, Samuel Adams. “Early Settlers of Dorchester, Mass.” New England Historical and Genealogical Register Vol 5 389, 465

Drake, Samuel Adams. “Edward Everett’s Birthplace, Dorchester.” Appletons Journal 9 (1873)

Johnson, Kenneth D. “The Enduring Black Church and Its Critics: A Book Review of Omar McRoberts s Streets of Glory.” Trotter Review, 15 issue 1 Religion and Civil Society (9-21-2003)

US Army Corps of Engineers. 2002. Environmental restoration report and environmental assessment Neponset River fish passage and habitat restoration project, including the Tileston and Hollingsworth Dam and the Walter Baker Dam, Neponset River basin, Milton and Boston, Massachusetts. Concord, MA: US Army Corps of Engineers, New England District.

Hansen, Ann Natalie. English Origins of the “Mary and John” Passengers. Columbus, OH: At the Sign of the Cock, 1985

James S. Doyle. Family Matters: A Boy’s Life in Depression-era Dorchester. (2015.)

Coffin, Nathaniel W. A Few Reasons in Favor of the Annexation of a Part of the Town of Dorchester to the City of Boston. (Boston, 1867)

A Few Reasons Why the Town of Dorchester Should Not Be Annexed to the City of Boston. bound with early matters relating to the town and first church of Dorchester NEHGS

Sultzman, Lee. 2006. First Nations histories: The Massachuset history.

Kilgore, Kathleen. “Four Terrific Neighborhoods.” Boston Magazine. (August, 1974) 66 no. 8, 35 in Bostonian Society scrapbook.

Heath, Richard. From Pear Orchard to Multi-Family Housing: A History of the Marshall P. Wilder Estate. (Jamaica Plain, 2003)

Edwin G. Heath. From “Round Marsh” to Public Garden. Pages 629-636 from Bostonian, a periodical ca. 1900. This article about the Public Garden mentions the citys greenhouses at Edward Everett Square with an illustration.

Chyet, Jacob Maruice. From Rovno to Dorchester.  Published in Lives and Voices: A Collection of 19th and 20th Century American Jewish Memoirs with Drawings of the Times edited by Stanley F. Chyet. (Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication Society of America, 1972)

Ghetto Memories Revisited. Dorchester, Roxbury & Mattapan As It Was As It Is Now by Norman Morris. 386 p.  Mr. Morris passed away in March 2015.  According to his obituary, “he interviewed former residents and old friends, collected photographs, posters, and school yearbooks, and incorporated his research in the book ‘Ghetto Memories,’ published in 2002.” With the tons of material he had, he completed this book as well.  Self-published book.

Good Old Dorchester. A Narrative history of the town, 1630-1893 by William Dana Orcutt. (Cambridge, 1893)

Rand McNally & Co.s Handy Guide to Boston and Environs. (1910). Two paragraphs about Dorchester give directions for reaching Dorchester by Trolley and refers to Dorchesters fine views and costly villas

Higher Education in the 1960’s: The Origins of the University of Massachusetts Boston by Diane D’Arrigo. (2004)

Danielle Kristina Schur. The Hill Versus the Field: A Case-Stuy Analysis of Sustained Gang Violence Between Two Boston Gangs.  Paper for B.A. in Sociology, Harvard University. (2020)

Historical and Archaeological Resources of the Boston Area. A Framework for Preservation Decisions. (Massachusetts Historical Commission, 1982, 1991 and pdf version 2007)

Barber, John Warner. Historical Collections, Being a General Collection of Interesting Facts, Traditions, Biographical Sketches, Anecdotes, &c. (Worcester: Dorr, Howland & Co., 1839)

Historical Data Relating to Counties, Cities and Towns in Massachusetts. (Boston: The New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1997). Lists all the towns that came out of Dorchester.

Means, James Howard. An Historical Discourse on Occasion of the Fiftieth Anniversary of the Gathering of the Second Church, Dorchester. Delivered January 3, 1858. (Boston, 1858.)

Means, James Howard. An Historical Discourse on Occasion of the Seventieth Anniversary of the Gathering of the Second Church, Dorchester. Delivered January 6, 1878. (Boston, 1878)

May, Henry Ashley. Historical Sketch of the First Burying Ground in Dorchester. (Boston, 1870). NEHGS

Stott, Peter H.   A History and Guide to the Restoration of Dorchester Shores. Cultural Resource Management Study Series No. t. Metropolitan District Commission, (1989)

History of Columbia Point by Nancy S. Seasholes Publication Date: 2014

Jackson, Robert Tracy. History of the Oliver, Vassall and Royall Houses. Dorchester, Cambridge and Medford. (Boston, 1907)

History of the T own of Dorchester, Massachusetts by Dorchester Antiquarian and Historical Society. (Boston, 1859)

Dale Stanten. The Hooker’s Daugher: A Boston Family’s Saga. (West Conshohocken, PA: Infinity Publishing, 2010)

Hoffman, Alexander von. House by House, Block by Block: The Rebirth of Americas Urban Neighborhoods. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2003)

Wilder, Marshall Pinckney. “The Horticulture of Boston and Vicinity” chapter in Vol. 4 of Memorial History of Boston. Justin Winsor, ed.

Fetcher, Grace Nies. In My Father’s House.  (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1955).  Preacher’s wife writing about their life.  They were  at the Stanton Avenue  Church for a time.

White, Theodore H. In Search of History: a Personal Adventure. (New York: Harper & Row, 1978)

Elizabeth Coachman.  Mary Jane Safford, M.D.: Indomitable Mite.  (2017)

Safford was a 19th century physician, writer, feminist, progressive reformer, and lecturer.

Ginsberg, Yona. Jews in a Changing Neighborhood. The Study of Mattapan. (New York: The Free Press, 1975)

The Jews of Boston: Essays on the Occasion of the Centenary (1895-1995) of the Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater Boston. Edited by Ellen Smith and Jonathan Sarna. (1995)

Jones Hill Study. Boston University, Fall 1977.

Mather, Richard. Journal of Richard Mather, 1635. His Life and Death, 1670. (Boston: David Clapp, 1850, 1874). Also published in Chronicles of the First Planters of the Colony of Massachusetts Bay. Boston, 1846.

Bossi, Karl R. Just Call Me Moose! Published by the Author. (2005).  About growing up in Dorchester.

Leading Businessmen of Back Bay, South End, Boston Highlands, Jamaica Plain and Dorchester. (Boston, 1888)

“Lenthal of Weymouth, held at Dorchester, December 10, 1693.” Congretational Quarterly (1877) 232-248.

Andrews, Agnes. “The Light of March 17, 1776. New England Magazine. 52 (1914-1915, 208-210. about the fortification of Dorchester Heights

Russell, Francis. “Living and Dying in Boston.” National Review 25 (1973) 1292-1296.

Living in Dorchester. Dorchester: Living in Dorchester, Inc., ca. 1980. Director: Patrick Cooke. Editor: Jerry Rosenswaike.Mayor’s Office of Program Development, Boston Landmarks Commission, and Boston Redevelopment Authority. 1978. Lower Mills: A Heritage State Park. (Boston, 1978).  Boston Public Library.

David J. Harding. Living the Drama: Community, Conflict, and Culture among Inner-City Boys. (2010)

Clarke, Eliot C. Main Drainage Works of the City of Boston. 2nd ed. (Boston: Rockwell and Churchill, City Printers. 1885).  About sewer from Boston through Columbia Point and pumping station

The Making of a Horse Shoe Nail by Putnam Nail Company. (c 1896)

Kuhns, Maude Pinney. The Mary and John: A Story of the Founding of Dorchester, Massachusetts, 1630. (Rutland, VT: Tuttle Publishing Company, 1943)

Anderson, Robert Charles.  “The Mary & John: developing objective critera for a synthetic passenger list. New England Historical and Genealogical Register. Vol. 147 (Apr. 1993)

MDC (Metropolitan District Commission). 1996. A master plan for the Lower Neponset River Reservation. (Boston, MA: MDC Planning Office)

Clap, Roger. Memoirs of Captain Roger Clap. Relating Some of Gods Remarkable Providences to him, in bringing him into New England. (Boston, W.T. Clap, 1807). Also published in Chronicles of the First Planters of the Colony of Massachusetts Bay. Boston, 1846

A memorial of Edward Everett, from the city of Boston by James M. Bugbee. (1865)

Memorial Sermon Preached in Honor of Deacon Laurin A. Bumpus; Preached in the Second Church, Dorchester, Mass., July 13th, 1902, with a Brief Sketch of His Life by Rev. Arthur Little, D.D., Pastor. (1902)

Ringer, R. James. “Missing for 304 years. The Failed Battle of October 1690 French vs. English at Quebec …” in National Geographic Magazine, August, 2000. The ship with the Dorchester men was lost but has been found at Baie-Trinite with muskets, silver, and other historical treasure

Perry, Simona Lee. More Than One River: Local, Place-Based Knowledge and the Political Ecology of Restoration and Remediation Along the Lower Neponset River, Massachusetts.   UMass Amherst Dissertations 2009

Charles W. Cheape. Moving the Masses: Urban Public Transit in New York, Boston, and Philadelphia, 1880-1912. (Cambridge, 1980)

EOEA (Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs)..2002. News release: Neponset marshes restoration project to begin, March 19. Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management, Wetlands Restoration Program.  MA Department of Environmental Management. 1996. Neponset River Estuary ACEC Resource Management Plan. Department of Conservation and Recreation, ACEC Program.

Milone & MacBroom, Inc. 2003. Neponset River fish passage and habitat restoration: Visualizing the alternatives for fish passage. February 26, 2003 public presentation, prepared for Massachusetts Riverways Program, DFWELE.

DCR (Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation). 2006. Neponset River master plan phase II.

Neponset River Watershed Association, and Executive Office of Environmental Affairs. 1997. Neponset Riverwatershed basin-wide action plan. Boston, MA.

Neponset River Watershed Association. 2008. Neponset River restoration project: Historic resources.

Neponset River Watershed Association. 2006. Neponset River Watershed Association strategic plan, 2006-2011.

Hayward, John. New England Gazetteer: Containing Descriptions of All the States, Counties and Towns in New England. Fifth ed. (Boston & Concord, NH: Israel S. Boyd and William White, 1839)

Wood, William. New Englands Prospect. (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1977). Originally pub. in 1634. Includes a paragraph describing Dorchester.

Jenney, Charles Francis. Northerly Part of the Ancient Line between Dedham and Dorchester. Reprinted from the Dedham Historical Register 1 (1890) 41-48; 94-100.

Barrows, Charles M. “Old Dorchester.” Bay State Monthly. 3 (1885).

Rowe, Henrietta Gould. “Old Dorchester Burying Ground.” Putnams Historical Magazine. new series 3 (1895) 81-86.

“Old Dorchester, The Celebration of Its 250th Anniversary” Boston Daily Advertiser June 18, 1880 BPL no. 11 in 4452.34

Old Harbor Housing Project : a study of development of public housing policy, 1930-1938 by Milton Lewis Kerstein

McBride, M. A. “Old Houses in Dorchester.” New England Magazine (new series) 2:314

Michaela Casey. The Old Overholt and Other Stories. 2017. (fiction but featuring her father)

Stone, Elma A. “The Old Trescott House.” Historical Record Hyde Park Historical Society 3 (1903) 73-76.

One-to-Four Family Home Foreclosures in South Dorchester: The Role of the Secondary Mortgage Market by Sara Ellen Barcan.  MA Thesis Dpeartment of Urban Studies and Planning , Harvard University, 1994.

Blanchard, Hiram W. An Open Letter to the Second Congregational Church of Dorchester, Massachusetts. Boston: Printed by Warren Richardson, 1880.

Frothingham, Richard. Oration Delivered before the City Government and Citizens of Boston, July 4, 1874. Music Hall. Boston, 1894. Appendix: The Action of Boston, Charlestown, Dorchester and Roxbury on the Question of Independence.

Healy, Gerard. Originally from Dorchester: A Memoir.   2014

Fowle, John Allen. Paper on the Old Dorchester Burying Ground Read Before the Dorchester Historical Society, November 21, 1901. 2nd ed. Dorchester: Published by the Society, 1907.

Parish register of the Grove Hall Universalist Church, Dorchester, Massachusetts, and favorite recipes  compiled by the Quota Club. (1913)

Pathways of the Puritans. Compiled under the Direction of the Massachusetts Bay Colony Tercentenary Commission. Boston, 1931. references to Dorchester

A People’s History of the New Boston by Jim Vrabel. (2014)

The Perfection of Christian Life in Heaven ; a Discourse Occasioned by the Death of Rev. John Codman, D.D., Delivered in the Village Church, Dorchester, January 2, 1848 by David Dyer. (1848)

Stark, James Henry. Places in Dorchester to Visit During Old Home Week. (Boston: Dorchester Historical Society, 1907)

Population & Housing profile, U. S. census STF1, 1990 : Boston and Its Neighborhoods by Rolf Goetze, Mark R. Johnson, Boston Redevelopment Authority Policy Development & Research Dept. ; State Data Center, Massachusetts Institute for Social and Economic Research. (1991)

Fletcher, Grace Nies.  Preacher’s Kids.  New York, 1958.  Preacher’s wife writing about the family.  They were at the Stanton Avenue Church for a while.

Proceedings of the Dedication of the Fountain on Eaton Square, Ward 24, October 24, 1885 , in Memory of Theodore Lyman, Jr., Mayor Boston in 1834-35. (Boston, 1886)

Proceedings of the two hundred and fiftieth anniversary of … the First Church and Parish of Dorchester, Mass., coincident with the settlement of the town; observed March 28 and June 17, 1880. (1880)

“A Reawakening of Savin Hill.” Boston Globe Sept. 23, 2001

Lawrence J. Vale.  Reclaiming Public Housing: A Half Century of Struggle in Three Public Neighborhoods. (Cambridge : Harvard University Press, 2002).  One of the three neighborhoods is the Franklin Field development iin Dorchester, a district that underwent rapid racial and class transition in the 1960s and 1970s, resulting in widespread poverty and housing abandonment.

Stebbins, O. B.  A Record of the Fortification on Dorchester Neck, March, 1776, with Some of the Prominent Events in the Siege of Boston. NEHGS

Records of the First Church at Dorchester, in New England, 1636-1734. (1891)  also available at:

Recovery of Some Materials for the Early History of Dorchester, General and Particular. Prepared for the New England Historic-Genealogical Register by Samuel G. Drake. (Boston, 1851)

Boston. Report of the Commissioners on the Annexation of Dorchester. (Boston, 1869)

Massachusetts. Department of Conservation and Recreation. Remediation and Reuse of the Former Shaffer Paper Site.

Reports in relation to the annexation of Dorchester to Boston : and the act of the Legislature to unite said town and city by Commissioners on the Annexation of Dorchester to Boston. (1869)

Warner, Sam B., Jr. Residential Development of Roxbury, West Roxbury and Dorchester … 1870-1900. Ph.D. Dissertation. Harvard University, 1959. (1981)

Breault, Robert F., and Matthew G. Cooke. 2006. Restoring an Urban river: Polychlorinated Biphenyls and Other Contaminants in Bottom Sediment of the Lower Neponset River, Massachusetts. In Contaminated soils,sediments and water: Successes and challenges, part VIII, ed. Edward J. Calabrese, Paul T. Kostecki, and James Dragun, 345-357. Springer US.

The Rich Men of Massachusetts … second edition.  (Boston, 1852).   Includes many Dorchester men.

Tucci, Douglas Shand. The Second Settlement: A Case Study in the Development of Victorian Boston. (Boston, 1974)

Breault, R.F., M.G. Cooke, and Michael Merrill. 2004b. Sediment Quality and Polychlorinated Biphenyls in the Lower Neponset River, Massachusetts, and Implications for Urban River Restoration. U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2004-5109.

Sermon and addresses commemorative of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the ordination of Rev. James H. Means as pastor of the Second Church, Dorchester : July 13th and 14th, 1873.  (Dorchester, 1873)

Zurawski, Carol and Lynn Whitney. Seventeenth Century Survey of Dorchester. (Boston, Boston University, 1979)

The Sexton’s Monitor and Dorchester Cemetery Memorial by Daniel Davenport.  (1826)

Davenport, Daniel. The Sexton’s Monitor and Dorchester Cemetery Memorial. 3rd edition. (Boston, 1845)

Swan, Robert Thaxter. “Some Dorchester Matters.” New England Historical and Genealogical Register. April 1895 153-165. Marriages solemnized by William Holden, births recorded by Dr. Phineas Holden 1793-1804.

Some Industries of New England: Their Origin, Development and Accomplishments, Illustrated by Many Old and Interesting Views. (Boston: State Street Trust Company, 1923).  Includes Tileston & Hollingsworth Company and Walter Baker & Co.

South Boston and Dorchester Formerly ye Peninsular of Mattapannock and ye Towne of Mattapan. (Boston, 1900)

Dezenski, Lauren. “State to Start Work on Port Norfolk Park.” Dorchester Reporter Volume 33, Issue 19, Thursday, May 7, 2015.

Clarke, Lois W. “Story of Dorchester Heights.” New England Magazine (new series) 18:221

Clarke, Thomas William. Story of Dorchester Heights. Freeport, NY: Books for Libraries Press, 1971.

The Story of Saint Mark’s Episcopal Church, Dorchester, Mass. (1909)

The Story of the Suffolk Resolves. (Milton: Milton Historical Society, 1973.)

“Strangers in Dorchester, Massachusetts.” New England Historical and Genealogical Register. 1906 vol. 60, 387-392; vol. 61 42-46.

Warner, Sam B., Jr. Streetcar Suburbs: the Process of Growth in Boston, 1870-1900. (Cambridge, 1962). Includes North Dorchester as one of the three streetcar suburbs explored in the book.

McRoberts, Omar M. Streets of Glory: Church and Community in a Black Urban Neighborhood. (Chicago: University of Chicago, 2003)

Subsidized Multi-family Rental Housing in the Boston Metropolitan Area: Analysis and Prognosis by Boston Redevelopment Authority and Boston Urban Observatory. (1973)

Sweet History: Dorchester and the Chocolate Factory. (Boston: Bostonian Society, 2005)

Heath, Richard. The Synagogues of Dorchester. (September, 2004).

Three-deckers of Dorchester : an architectural historical survey by Arthur J. Krim.  (Bostoon, 1977)

Towards a Healthy Neighborhood: Recommendations for Health Assessments of Future Development in Upham’s Corner by Luc Figueiredo Miller (2015)

 MA Department of Public Health. 2007. Updated Public Health Consumption Advisory: Neponset River. Bureau of Environmental Health. – December 2007.

Upham’s Corner Preservation Priorities Report. (Boston Preservation Alliance, 2011)

Urban Consumption in Late 19th-Century Dorchester by Jennifer Poulsen (2011)

Gamm, Gerald. Urban Exodus: Why the Jews Left Boston and the Catholics Stayed. (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1999).

Walton, Susan S. The View from Dorchester: Colonel Samuel Pierce, Farmer & Patriot, 1739-19815. Revised. (Boston: Historic New England, 2006)

Virginia-Monadnock Area Conservation Plan, Dorchester, Boston.  Urban Planning for Historic Perservation, Boston University, 1977.

Vital records of the town of Dorchester from 1826 to 1849. Boston, 1905)

WalkBoston. Walking Tours of Bostons Unique Neighborhoods. (Boston: Appalachian Mountain Club Books, 2003). Includes a walk from Central Avenue trolley stop through Lower Mills along the Neponset River to Port Norfolk and back along Ashmont Street to Ashmont Station. Includes a walk for Savin Hill. Other walks touch Dorchester, such as the South Bay walk with stops at Edward Everett Square, and the South Boston/Dorchester Bay walk that starts at JFK/UMass.

Wasn’t That a Time: A Corcoran Family Memoir, 1925-1950. By Joseph E. Corcoran. (Boston, 2008)

Wegman, Jacob. What Happened to the Three-Decker?  Master’s Thesis, Real Estate Development and City Planning, MIT, 2006.

Working Class Housing: a Study of Triple-deckers in Boston by Boston Redevelopment Authority and Boston Urban Observatory. (1975)

Warner, Sam B., Jr. The Zone of Emergence. (Cambridge, 1962). Article and introduction on Dorchester by Robert A. Woods and Alert J. Kennedy.

Search the Healey Library’s catalog for books about Dorchester. Also try searching for related keywords like “Ashmont,” “Columbia Point,” and “Savin Hill.”


Digitized Publications

The Boston Plan: proposal for a new neighborhood, 1977

Columbia Point, a New Vision – Boston Society Of Architects

Columbia Point, a Visual and Social Study – Terri Gordon Simmers

Columbia Point: Composite Development Plan – Columbia Point Peninsula Planning Committee, 1977

Columbia Point Developer Selection Kit – Boston Housing Authority, 1981

Columbia Point Development Study, Harvard-Columbia Point Planning Workshop – Harvard University. Graduate School Of Design, 1974

Columbia Point Peninsula, Request for Developer Proposals – Boston Redevelopment Authority, 1982

Columbia Point Peninsula: A Proposal for the Revitalization of Columbia Point Peninsula – Columbia Associates, 1982

Columbia Point Peninsula Proposal – Corcoran Mullins, Jennison, Inc, 1983

Columbia Point Peninsula Revitalization Program: Impact Assessment of Proposed Street Improvements – Boston Redevelopment Authority, 1985

Columbia Point Proposal – Housing Innovations Inc, 1983

Columbia Point Redevelopment Plan – Boston Redevelopment Authority, 1980

Harbor Point (redevelopment of the Columbia Point Housing Project): Final Environmental Impact Report – Boston Redevelopment Authority

The Impact on Housing of the Opening of the Columbia Point Campus of the University of Massachusetts – Dorchester-Columbia Point Task Force, 1973

Tamis, Laurie P.  Ripe for Investment: Refocusing the food Desert Debate on Smaller Stores, Wholesale Markets and Regional Distribution Systems.  Thesis, City Planning, MIT, 2009

Urban Development Action Grant Application, Columbia Point Peninsula Revitalization Program – Boston Redevelopment Authority, 1982

Urban Partnership Application for Columbia Point Peninsula – Boston Redevelopment Authority, 1978

These publications are held at the Boston Public Library, and the digitized items are available through the Internet Archive. To locate additional digitized publications about Dorchester, search the Internet Archive for keywords such as “Dorchester,” “Columbia Point,” and “Savin Hill.”


Boston Globe (current) 1983-present

Full text coverage of the newspaper.

Mass Media

Current UMass Boston student newspaper

Newspaper Archive

NewspaperARCHIVE is the world’s best resource for historical and genealogical information. Our unique archive spans more than 400 years of family history, small-town events, world news and more.

Boston Public Library: Massachusetts Newspapers on Microfilm

The Boston Public Library holds local Massachusetts newspapers on microfilm. Contact the BPL’s Microtext Department at 617-859-2018 for assistance with accessing these newspapers.

Dorchester Newspapers on Microfilm   – Boston Public Library

AN2.M4D532  Curbstone                                Monthly           Jul 29, 1989-Dec 1991, Sep 18,1975-Dec. 31, 1979

AN2.M4D535  Dorchester Argus-Citizen         Monthly           Jan, 1980+

An2.M4D54    Dorchester Beacon (aka Boston Beacon, Dorchester News, Dorchester News Gatherer

Weekly                        Sep 27, 1873-Dec. 29, 1960

An2.M4D545  Dorchester community News   Bi-Weekly, Monthly    Jan 1974-Feb 10, 2007

An2.M4D55    Dorchester Record (Dorchester-Roxbury Record, Suburban Record

Weekly                        Feb 27, 1941-May5, 1969;

[1941-43]; [1946-49]

An2.M4D56    Reporter/Dorchester reporter   Weekly                        Sep 1983+

AN2.M4D565  Mercury                                   Weekly                        Sep 8, 1855-Aug 16, 1856

AN2.M4S641  South Boston Gazetter and Dorchester Chronicle

Weekly                        May 10, 1851-Sep 25, 1852

AN2.M4M38   Mattapan Tribune                    Weekly                        Sep 18, 1975-Dec 31, 1979

N2.M4M52      Milton-Mattapan New (aka Mattapan-Milton News)

Search and browse all of the Healey Library’s newspaper databases

The Dorchester New-gatherer was mentioned by David Clapp in The Ancient Proprietors of Jones Hill.  at least for 1881 and 1882

Social Media sites


Dorchester Historical Society


Dorchester Connect

Dorchester! The Old & the New

Dorchester High School Friends

Anthony Sammarco Lost Boston

Digital Collections

City of Boston Archives          includes many of Dorchester


Dorchester, Mass. Memories Road Show

Dorchester (Codman Academy), Mass. Memories Road Show

Dorchester (Codman Square), Mass. Memories Road Show

Dorchester (Codman Square Great Hall), Mass. Memories Road Show

Dorchester (Fields Corner), Mass. Memories Road Show

Dorchester (Lower Mills), Mass. Memories Road Show

“Remembering Home: Memories of Boston Public Housing,” Mass. Memories Road Show

UMass Boston 50th Anniversary, Mass. Memories Road Show

University of Massachusetts Boston Historic Photographs




Black Perspectives: Columbia Point

Down the Project: The Crisis of Public Housing

Audio and Video Databases

Search these databases for “Dorchester” and related keywords.

Academic Video Online: Premium

Academic Video Online: Premium is Alexander Street’s newest comprehensive video subscription. Launched in 2013, this expansive resource comprises the full content of dozens of video collections and bonus discipline clusters, and grows by 7,000 titles each year. Collections include Education in Video; Latin America in Video; Theatre in Video; Counseling and Therapy in Video Vols 1-3 and many more collections

Alexander Street Press Streaming Video Collection

The video cross-search interface lets you search all the Alexander Street video in your library—both VAST and other individual discipline collections.

Kanopy Streaming Video

Online educational videos

Contains Media Education Foundation collection which produces and distributes documentary films and other educational resources to inspire critical thinking about the social, political, and cultural impact of American mass media.

WGBH Open Vault

Open Vault is the home of WGBH Media Library and Archives, providing online access to unique and historically important content produced by the public television and radio station WGBH. The ever-expanding site contains video, audio, images, searchable transcripts, and resource management tools, all of which are available for individual and classroom learning. Visitors can become a “member” (free) of Open Vault: to access records and save findings.


Dorchester’s Blue Hill Avenue



Posted on

December 2, 2021

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