Useful sources for researching the strike and strikers.
Some subscription sites are available for in-library use. Check your local library for free access to these resources.
- Boston Public Library “E-CARD” for Massachusetts Residents. Allows access to dozens of high-quality online resources including many of those listed on this page.
- FamilySearch.org. Free. For census records and vital records.
- Ancestry.com. Subscription. Many libraries offer in-library use. Includes census, vital records, Draft Registration cards.
- Mass. Catholic Order of Foresters. Free. life insurance policy applications for approximately 30,000 individuals, most of Irish birth or ancestry, most in Massachusetts. At least some of the strikers would have belonged to this fraternal organization. There is typically a $10 reproduction fee for copies of Foresters records. That fee will be waived for any registered researcher working on this project.
- American Ancestors. Subscription. MA Vital records and other e-books and records.
- Newspaper Archive. Subscription. Searchable newspaper database.
- Findagrave.com. Free. Searchable online database of gravestones.
City of Boston and Boston Police Department Resources
- “Map of the City of Boston.” Free. This is a detailed ward map for the year 1920.
- Boston Directories. Free. Complete listing of Boston City Directories available at Internet Archive, Tufts Digital Library, and Boston Athenaeum Digital Collections. Directories available for the years 1875-1900, 1905, 1916, and 1925.
- “The Officers and Men… of the Boston Police”: 1901 Yearbook. Free. Includes photographs of all officers who were with the Boston Police as of 1901.
- 1919 Boston Municipal Employee Directory – Police Department Only. Free. (The full directory is available online through the Internet Archive. We have reduced the directory to just the Police Department entries for the convenience of BPStrike Project researchers.)
- Boston Police Records at Internet Archive. Free. Office of the Police Commissioner. Vol. 56. Jan. 1, 1919 to Dec. 31, 1919; this links to the pages for September, 1919 (pp.1171-1422). This is the official record of all police business that occurred on each day of the the month of September in 1919. Entries include all general police orders and specific information concerning police personnel,including appointments of special police officers and payroll. This report also includes information relating to various City licenses including: handgun, amusement, hackney carriage, wagon, collective musician (i.e. parade), private detective, junk collector, and more. Location of original: Boston Police Department Records Center & Archives.
- Annual Report of the Police Commissioner for the City of Boston for the year ending November 30, 1919 at Internet Archive. Free.
- The Annual Report of the Board of the Police (1885-1905) and the Annual Report of the Office of the Police Commissioner (1906-1930) on the Boston Public Library website. Free.
- Boston Social Club Register. Free. Minutes of the meetings of this fraternal police organization, 1939 – 1970. May include information about death dates for strikers who died within that time frame.
- Boston Police Department Divisions, 2016 (current – these may not match the 1919 divisions. Stay tuned for a list of the divisions in 1919)
- “My Most Thrilling Experience” series, Boston Traveler, 1916. Daily feature that ran in the Boston Traveler from February 14, 1916 to November 9, 1916. Each segment includes a 400-word narrative of a Boston policeman’s favorite “exciting moment” on the job, complete with cartoon illustration of the moment and a portrait of the officer. Over 100 profiles feature future strikers. This newspaper is held on microfilm at the Boston Public Library.
- Browse digital images of Massachusetts tax records for Boston, 1822-1918, provided by the Boston City Archives, in FamilySearch. Records are organized by year and ward.
- Boston Election Department Resident Lists, provided by the Boston Public Library, at Internet Archive.
For more materials, see the research guide
Selected Resources Documenting the 1919 Boston Police Strike