Historical Research Concord

Historical Research Concord, Massachusetts:
There are a few ways to approach your academic studies. First and best would be taking the time to walk around and familiarize yourself with the topology. This way you get a feel for the inter-relationships of the famous authors (Alcott, Emerson, Fuller, Hawthorne, Thoreau et al) and how close they all lived together which could be a whole field of study in itself. There are many tours offered by professionals that take the history of Concord very seriously and would be more than happy to answer any questions.

You may have an interest in Concord from an overall historical perspective or may have a niche focus, as I, on family that immigrated to Concord in the late 1890s and early 1900’s. My grandfather immigrated from Cromarty Scotland to Concord, MA around 1913. I could not understand why he came to Concord then discovered he had an uncle that was already here with an established business. His name was Alexander Urquhart (My great-great uncle) who started a bakery on Main Street and built (1898) the building that now houses “Helen’s Restaurant”. He had two sons that he sent to MIT and owned a house on Walden Street that was number 38 in its day. It still stands although structurally modified. Around 1968 Concord changed the numbering system of their streets. Can you guess what number it is today? Note the photo below of Alexander in his Main Street bakery. “Concord Domestic Bakery”. He apprenticed in Scotland under a master baker starting at age 15. He started the business in Concord in 1898 and ran it to about 1927. Photo of him at his Main Street location is estimated to have been taken around 1906 to 1909. It was a post card mailed to the family in Scotland.

Essay in the Works – We (myself and cousins in Glasgow – We are all related to Alexander) are working on an essay about Alexander Urquhart to share with the public. Drop us a line if you have an interest.

Concord Domestic Bakery
Concord Domestic Bakery ~ 1900

Back to Research:
Go to each point of interest such as the Alcott Orchard House and take the tour. The guides are very knowledgeable at all the locations. Then buy a book from their gift store on the subject matter. See the Day Tripper link below or in the mobile menu to plan your itinerary.

Book Stores – Another option is to visit the book stores. The owners are well read to say the least and can guide you to the most pertinent material to read. They have sections within the store dedicated to just Concord! Checkout – The Concord Bookshop and Barrow Bookstore.

Special Collections – Another option is to visit the William Munroe Special Collections at the Concord Library. The collection is extensive. I spent years there researching various family members. Having access to maps dating to the 1800’s, street directories, poll tax directories and assessor ledgers makes building timelines easy and factually correct.

Cemeteries are a Rich Source of Information – The Friends of Sleepy Hollow Cemetery are citizens who comprise a non-profit community organization with a mission to further enhance and promote the preservation, beautification, and appreciation of the public burial grounds in the Town of Concord. Those burial grounds include Sleepy Hollow Cemetery (1823), Old Hill Burying Ground (1670), and South Burying Place (1690). Visit their website.

Concord Museum A newly renovated facility with professional staff well versed in Concord history – Click Here

Town Clerk’s Office – From the Town Clerk’s office you can get death and marriage certificates. I find death certificates have some of the most important information that there is to have on a person. Visit the Town’s Website.

Online Databases – Also try Ancestry.com. They have scanned in millions of newspapers, census data, burial data, military data, death and marriage certificates.

Concord, MA is a Literary Powerhouse – There is so much to discover and a lot of good people willing to help you get to the level you want. You could spend years doing research. But what is so different about Concord is that there are so many points of interest that are walkable from the center of town and inter-fused with classy boutiques, antique shops and a strong culinary scene. Makes for many great day-trips!

Hope you enjoy this spin on Historic Concord Massachusetts. My name is Don Campbell. Feel free to drop a line or call at 978-273-5616 or email to info@theconcordexperience.com