More than 1,000 videos from Mass. Memories Road Show at UMass Boston now online

Videographer Jack Clancy records an interview with Max Manadee at the Nahant Mass. Memories Road Show, April 1, 2017. The photographs, stories, and videos collected in Nahant will be online soon. Photo courtesy Dalia Shilas.

For over a decade, the Mass. Memories Road Show has celebrated and documented the stories that connect people in Massachusetts to their communities. In this period, the program has come a long way. With the help of volunteers and community partners, the Mass. Memories Road Show has collected over 8,000 images and more than 1,000 video interviews. The Mass. Memories Road Show collection includes contributions from nearly 40 communities and University Archives & Special Collections at UMass Boston continues to work toward representing all 351 towns in the Commonwealth.

“We began collecting video interviews at one of the Dorchester Mass. Memories Road Shows in 2006,” recalls Joanne Riley, University Archivist and Curator of Special Collections. Riley enlisted a UMass Boston undergraduate student to record the first interviews, and the Video Station soon became a standard feature of all Mass. Memories Road Show events. The Road Show team met Liz Clancy Lerner at the Quincy Mass. Memories Road Show in 2007 and the following year began working with her and her father Jack Clancy, of Best Dog Ever Films, to record and edit the videos in a consistent manner.

“Contributors are excited to describe their photographs,” explained Road Show program coordinator Carolyn Goldstein, “and many of them choose to sit for a video interview to share ‘the stories behind their photos’ or other memories.”

“Throughout the years I have laughed and cried at the stories I’ve recorded,” recalls Liz Clancy Lerner. “I’ve been thrilled at the enthusiasm I see for history in the communities I’ve visited. This is a special project that records what’s often seen as ordinary family stories, but when you dig a little deeper, and really hear how they impact individual families, you see how much these images and anecdotes truly are the beating heart of these Massachusetts communities. I can’t wait to hear more!”

All of the video interviews collected at the Mass. Memories Road Shows from 2006 through 2016 are available online now for research. Some of the newest additions to the collection are the video recordings from early Road Shows held in Dorchester, Quincy, Reading, Stoneham, and Duxbury. Interviews from more recent Mass. Memories Road Show events in Martha’s Vineyard, Spencer, and Hyde Park are also available.

Mary Doherty Manseau at the Dorchester Mass. Memories Road Show: Video Interview from UMass Boston Archives on Vimeo.

These videos preserve the family histories, childhood memories, activities, and experiences that together help tell the complex personal history of Massachusetts.

Explore the Mass. Memories Road Show video collection here.

Caroline Littlewood is a graduate assistant in University Archives & Special Collections and a graduate student in History (Public History Track) at UMass Boston.


The Mass. Memories Road Show is a statewide digital history project that documents people, places and events in Massachusetts history through family photographs and stories. In partnership with teams of local volunteers, we organize public events to scan family and community photographs and videotape “the stories behind the photos.” The images and videos are indexed and incorporated into an online educational database. Since its launch, the project has gathered more than 9,000 photographs and stories from across the state. It is supported in part by the Patricia C. Flaherty ’81 Endowed Fund at UMass Boston.

University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston was established in 1981 as a repository to collect archival material in subject areas of interest to the university, as well as the records of the university itself. The mission and history of UMass Boston guide the collection policies of University Archives & Special Collections, with the university’s urban mission and strong support of community service reflected in the records of and related to urban planning, social welfare, social action, alternative movements, community organizations, war and social consequence, and local history related to neighboring communities. To learn more, visit blogs.umb.edu/archives.

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Mass. Memories Road Show heads to Eastham on Sunday, May 7

When: Sunday, May 7, 2017 | 10:00 am – 3:00 pm

Location: Eastham Public Library | 190 Samoset Road | Eastham, Mass. | Click here for directions.

Do you have a connection to Eastham, Massachusetts? Do you live or work in Eastham? Are your roots in Eastham? Share your memories and take your place in Massachusetts history at this free, public event.

Please bring 2-3 photographs in their original format (digital or print photographs) and your stories to be recorded. We will scan unframed pictures and copy digital images and return the pictures back to you. All images will be added to the online collection at openarchives.umb.edu.

Local support for the Eastham Mass. Memories Road Show is provided by the Eastham Public Library.

For more information about the Eastham Mass. Memories Road Show, contact Debra DeJonker-Berry at ddejonkerberry@clamsnet.org or by calling 508-240-5950 (ext. 3137).

The Mass. Memories Road Show is a statewide digital history project that documents people, places, and events in Massachusetts history through family photographs and stories. It is produced by the Joseph P. Healey Library at the University of Massachusetts Boston and is co-sponsored by the Patricia C. Flaherty ’81 Endowed Fund.

Download the flyer for the Eastham Mass. Memories Road Show and remember to share it with your friends and family members!

Questions? Email carolyn.goldstein@umb.edu.

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Mass. Memories Road Show heads to Nahant on Saturday, April 1

When: Saturday, April 1, 2017 | 10:00 am – 3:00 pm

Location: Nahant Town Hall | 334 Nahant Road | Nahant, Mass. | Click here for directions.

Do you have a connection to the Nahant, Massachusetts? Do you live or work in Nahant? Are your roots in Nahant? Share your memories and take your place in Massachusetts history at this free, public event.

Please bring 2-3 photographs in their original format (digital or print photographs) and your stories to be recorded. We will scan unframed pictures and copy digital images and return the images back to you. All images will be added to the online collection at openarchives.umb.edu.

Local support for the Nahant Memories Road Show is provided by the Nahant Public Library, 01908, Nahant Council on Aging, Nahant Historical Society, Nahant Public Schools, Nahant S.W.I.M. Inc., and Northeastern University Marine Science Center, with funding from the Friends of Nahant Public Library and Nahant Cultural Council.

The Mass. Memories Road Show is a statewide digital history project that documents people, places, and events in Massachusetts history through family photographs and stories. It is produced by the Joseph P. Healey Library at the University of Massachusetts Boston and is co-sponsored by the Patricia C. Flaherty ’81 Endowed Fund.

Download the flyer for the Nahant Mass. Memories Road Show here and remember to share it with your friends and family members!

Questions? Email carolyn.goldstein@umb.edu.

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Announcing Mass. Memories Road Show events for 2017

Join us on the road!

University Archives & Special Collections at UMass Boston is excited to announce that the Mass. Memories Road Show will be visiting four communities in Massachusetts in 2017 to collect family photographs and stories from individuals in those communities.

  • Nahant              Nahant Town Hall                           Saturday, April 1
  • Eastham           Eastham Public Library                 Sunday, May 7
  • Wilmington    Wilmington High School               Saturday, September 30
  • Marshfield      Ventress Memorial Library           Saturday, October 28
2016-11-01-mmrs-poster-and-handout-final

Click the image to download a copy of this flyer.

Keep visiting blogs.umb.edu/archives for updates about these events.

Browse the Mass. Memories Road Show collection here.


The Mass. Memories Road Show is a statewide digital history project that documents people, places and events in Massachusetts history through family photographs and stories. In partnership with teams of local volunteers, we organize public events to scan family and community photographs and videotape “the stories behind the photos.” The images and videos are indexed and incorporated into an online educational database. Since its launch, the project has gathered more than 9,000 photographs and stories from across the state. It is supported in part by the Patricia C. Flaherty ’81 Endowed Fund at UMass Boston.

University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston was established in 1981 as a repository to collect archival material in subject areas of interest to the university, as well as the records of the university itself. The mission and history of UMass Boston guide the collection policies of University Archives & Special Collections, with the university’s urban mission and strong support of community service reflected in the records of and related to urban planning, social welfare, social action, alternative movements, community organizations, war and social consequence, and local history related to neighboring communities. To learn more, visit blogs.umb.edu/archives.

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Hyde Park Mass. Memories Road Show photographs and stories now online

The photographs, stories, and videos gathered at the Hyde Park Mass. Memories Road Show are available online now for research.

"When my aunt and my mom get together it is awesome to see their different ways of being and yet so much alike. They feed off each other and are the ties that bind our family together. My aunt loves to talk and my mother not as much and yet it’s the ying and yang that makes the rest of us smile. The love and life lessons run through us all. Much love Aunt Bonnie and mom. Pictured, from left to right: Boonie Booker and Carolyn Harrell. Contributor: Antoinette. Harrell.

The matriarchs, April 2016. “When my aunt and my mom get together it is awesome to see their different ways of being and yet so much alike. They feed off each other and are the ties that bind our family together. My aunt loves to talk and my mother not as much and yet it’s the ying and yang that makes the rest of us smile.” Pictured, from left to right: Boonie Booker and Carolyn Harrell. Contributor: Antoinette Harrell.

Held at the Hyde Park Municipal Building, or “Muni,” on May 14, 2016, the event was organized by the Friends of the Hyde Park Library and sponsored by the Boston Centers for Youth and Families (BCYF) Hyde Park Community Center and Spin350 Creative. Over twenty local volunteers collaborated with a team of UMass Boston staff members and public history graduate students, as well as “Roadies” from past Mass. Memories Road Show events, to welcome more than 100 adults and children with connections to the Boston neighborhood.

Grandfather did the cooking (he's wearing the apron) and he is pouring his homebrew. Pictured, from left to right: my uncle Joe Whalen, my aunt Francis Whalen, my father's father John, uncle John, Darlene Vance, uncle Bob Voss, Jim Hennessey, my grandmother Anna Vance, my aunt Pauline Kominski, my aunt Sophie Sarno, and my father's cousin John Sarno. Location: Williams Avenue. Contributor: Robert Vance.

The party never stops–three-family gathering on Williams Avenue, 1950s. “Grandfather did the cooking (he’s wearing the apron) and he is pouring his home-brew. Pictured, from left to right: my uncle Joe Whalen, my aunt Francis Whalen, my father’s father John, uncle John, Darlene Vance, uncle Bob Voss, Jim Hennessey, my grandmother Anna Vance, my aunt Pauline Kominski, my aunt Sophie Sarno, and my father’s cousin John Sarno.” Contributor: Robert Vance.

Participants shared images of informal family gatherings such as birthday parties, weddings, and holiday celebrations. Community life in Hyde Park over the years is also well documented in the collection. Many individuals contributed photographs of themselves as students attending Most Precious Blood, Hyde Park High School, and other local schools. Others remembered coming together to play with neighbors and to participate in sports competitions, parades, and the creative arts.

New England Tel. "Working on Harvard Street switchboard in Hyde Park. Pictured, from left to right: teacher Mary Miles, Mary Hannon, Mary Lou Leary, and unidentified woman. Contributor: Mary Lou Greene.

New England Tel., 1949. “Working on Harvard Street switchboard in Hyde Park. Pictured, from left to right: teacher Mary Miles, Mary Hannon, Mary Lou Leary, and unidentified woman. Contributor: Mary Lou Greene.

Several photographs document men and women at work in local restaurants, banks, bakeries, convenience stores, and other family enterprises in the neighborhood.

We were asked to be the first family in Hyde Park to receive a single stream recycling bin. Liam was the first to use it. Pictured, from left to right: Rob Consalvo, Janice Kenney, Larry Kenney, Mayor Thomas M. Menino, Ryleigh Kenney, and Liam Kenney. Contributor: Janice Kenney.

“In 2007, we were asked to be the first family in Hyde Park to receive a single stream recycling bin. Liam was the first to use it. Pictured, from left to right: Rob Consalvo, Janice Kenney, Larry Kenney, Mayor Thomas M. Menino, Ryleigh Kenney, and Liam Kenney.” Contributor: Janice Kenney.

A number of individuals chose to preserve memories of their involvement in politics and community activism. Photographs document neighborhood residents running for elected office, saving the local public library, and cleaning up the Neponset River. Many people shared photographs of themselves taken with the late Mayor Thomas M. Menino, who was born in Hyde Park in the 1940s and lived there until his death in 2014.

Browse the Hyde Park Mass. Memories Road Show collection.


The Mass. Memories Road Show is a statewide digital history project that documents people, places and events in Massachusetts history through family photographs and stories. In partnership with teams of local volunteers, we organize public events to scan family and community photographs and videotape “the stories behind the photos.” The images and videos are indexed and incorporated into an online educational database. Since its launch, the project has gathered more than 9,000 photographs and stories from across the state. It is supported in part by the Patricia C. Flaherty ’81 Endowed Fund at UMass Boston.

University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston was established in 1981 as a repository to collect archival material in subject areas of interest to the university, as well as the records of the university itself. The mission and history of UMass Boston guide the collection policies of University Archives & Special Collections, with the university’s urban mission and strong support of community service reflected in the records of and related to urban planning, social welfare, social action, alternative movements, community organizations, war and social consequence, and local history related to neighboring communities. To learn more, visit blogs.umb.edu/archives.

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