Local History / Archives Collection

About Our Collection

The Athol Public Library strives to collect, preserve, and disseminate information relating to the histories of Athol and the surrounding communities. The collection provides access to a variety of information on many of the people and events pertinent to Athol’s rich history.

The collection is housed in the Local History / Archives Room and is open to the public during regular library hours. Visitors are asked to sign-in at the Adult Circulation Desk. While the collection contains an assortment of facts and data, our genealogy specific resources are limited. We are, however, often able to assist with locating birth, death, and marriage records. If you need assistance, please contact the library, or you can make an appointment by calling 978-249-9515. Requests for assistance can also be submitted online. Click the Online Request button for access to our easy to use form.

Research fees start at $5.00 for a basic request to a maximum of $15.00 depending on the time spent and level of research involved. Documents can be saved digitally and emailed or printed for a fee. All charges for local history research support the Friends of the Library.

A microfilm / microfiche reader printer, located in the Carnegie section of the library, is available for use by the public during regular library hours. No library card is required. Documents can be printed for a fee or saved to your personal flash drive.

Popular Resources

Local Newspapers available on microfilm:
Athol Daily News (1936 - present)
Athol Transcript (1871 - 1935)
Athol Chronicle (1924 - 1934)
Worcester West Chronicle (1866 - 1924)

Athol Cemetery Burial Card Records available on microfilm:
Chestnut Hill Cemetery (early 1800 - mid 1900)
Doe Valley/Ellinwood Cemetery (late 1800 - late 1900)
Mt. Pleasant Cemetery (mid 1700 - mid 1990)
New Sherborn/Stratton Cemetery (mid 1800 - early 1900)
Highland Cemetery (mid 1800 - late 1900)
Silver Lake Cemetery (mid 1800 - present)
Veterans Graves Registration - various cemeteries (beginning with Revolutionary War)
Click the Athol Cemeteries button for more information on local cemeteries.

Vital Records (through 1849):
More than 174 towns in Massachusetts are included in this collection of hardbound volumes from the Systematic History Fund published by Franklin P. Rice in 1910. The list of town births, marriages, and deaths compiled includes all that were found in the Town Books covering the period from the earliest date there recorded to the end of the year 1849. Marriages and intentions of marriage are printed under the names of both parties, but the full information concerning each person is given only under his or her name. An asterisk after a marriage indicates that the intention is not found recorded, and in many cases this is accounted for by the fact that neither party belonged in the town, and consequently were recorded elsewhere.

Vital Records (1700 - present):
Copies of birth, marriage, and death certificates (including certified copies for a fee) can be requested online. Click on the Vital Records button for more information.

Additional Reference Materials

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