Interested in the history of Columbia Point?

See page 21 of the presentation by historian Nancy Seasholes and find out how the pictured configuration of land became the Columbia Point of today. (Image courtesy University Archives and Special Collections, UMass Boston)

See page 21 of the presentation by Nancy Seasholes and find out how this pictured configuration of land became the Columbia Point of today. (Image courtesy University Archives and Special Collections, UMass Boston)

Columbia Point has been the home of the University of Massachusetts Boston since 1974 (you can learn more about that move and about the site selection process in our archival collections), but this peninsula in Dorchester Bay has a documented history of use that goes back for centuries.

University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston recently posted a presentation by historian Nancy S. Seasholes to our digital collections site about the history of Columbia Point. The presentation, which explains and shows Columbia Point in its many configurations over the years, is based on a lecture given at UMass Boston by Nancy Seasholes as part of Geography Awareness Week. The lecture was sponsored by the Earth and Geographic Sciences Club, which was advised by Professor Richard Gelpke. The lecture and presentation draw from Dr. Seasholes’s highly regarded book Gaining Ground: A History of Landmaking in Boston (MIT Press, 2003).

Click here to view the presentation and to learn about the surprisingly long and varied history of Columbia Point.


University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston collects materials related to the university’s history, as well as materials that reflect the institution’s urban mission and strong support of community service, notably in collections of records of urban planning, social welfare, social action, alternative movements, community organizations, and local history related to neighboring communities.

University Archives & Special Collections welcomes inquiries from individuals, organizations, and businesses interested in donating materials of an archival nature that that fit within our collecting policy. These include manuscripts, documents, organizational archives, collections of photographs, unique publications, and audio and video media. For more information about donating to University Archives & Special Collections, click here or email library.archives@umb.edu.

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