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The New England Historic Genealogical Society

Contact The New England Historic Genealogical Society
101 Newbury Street
Boston, MA 02116-3007
Telephone: (617) 536-5740
Web site:
Hours Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (closed on Saturdays that fall before Monday holidays)
Wednesday and Thursday: 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

The New England Historic Genealogical Society is the oldest and largest genealogical society in the United States. With the membership count currently at 16,500, and with 200 new members each month, they are also one of the fastest-growing! Here's why:

The Library

The New England Historic Genealogical Society was founded in 1845 to collect, preserve, and publish family and local histories, mainly from New England. The collection has now grown to more than 180,000 books and microforms, and encompasses genealogies and local histories from the United States, Canada, and European and other countries throughout the world. In addition to their non-circulating collection, they also offer a circulating library of 20,000 volumes and an unparalleled collection of manuscripts.

The collection of the New England Historic Genealogical Society concentrates on New England. They have censuses, vital records, town histories, and church records for most New England States, and especially for Massachusetts. In addition, they have selected records for the remainder of the United States, as well as Canada, England, Ireland, and parts of Europe.

Members of the New England Historic Genealogical Society enjoy free use of the non-circulating library and manuscripts and non-members must pay daily fees to use the library. The manuscript collection is closed to non-members. A modest fee is charged for requests from the circulating library.

Educational Programs and Tours

The New England Historic Genealogical Society also sponsors a variety of activities for their members, both in Boston and several locations across the United States. Topics of recent educational programs include beginners' courses, migration patterns, use of court records, and techniques for determining maiden names. They also lead yearly research tours to Salt Lake City, Washington, D.C., Canada, and the United Kingdom.

Member Publications

Members receive The New England Historical and Genealogical Register and Nexus, free of charge. The New England Historical and Genealogical Register is a quarterly journal that includes a variety of information, such as genealogies of New England families, transcripts of never-before printed records, book reviews, and notes about recent library acquisitions. Nexus is a genealogical magazine that's published 5 times each year. Regular features include a queries section, articles about genealogical research, information about upcoming events, and advertisements from professional genealogists and research firms. Other publications include the Great Migration Newsletter and The New England Computer Genealogist.

Research Services

When you have difficulties with your research, the Enquiries Service may be able to help you out. Requests are taken in writing — contact the New England Historic Genealogical Society for details about what information they need from you and for prices.


Members benefit from a variety of discounts, including reduced membership fees in the New England Computer Genealogists group, reduced prices on NEHGS publications, and reduced hourly rates for research services.

The New England Historic Genealogical Society offers a wealth of genealogical information for family history enthusiasts. They invite you to become a member of the society today!

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