This research guide includes and supplements content from the original Harvard in the 17th and 18th Centuries guide, described below. The guide was part of a project to enhance descriptions and digitize 17th and 18th century collections in the Harvard University Archives. The current research guide provides links to online finding aids in the tool HOLLIS for Archival Discovery, the online catalog for exploring collection guides, finding aids, and inventories to locate unique materials in Harvard's special collections and archives. If online finding aids do not exist, the research guide provides links to records in HOLLIS, the online library catalog of the Harvard Library.
"Harvard in the 17th and 18th Centuries is an online guide to thousands of items—diaries, commonplace books, correspondence, legal documents, University records, drawings, maps, student notebooks, scientific observations, and lecture notes—that form the documentary history of Harvard and serve as one of the great social history collections on the evolving United States. Together, these materials provide insight into the material culture of colonial life, the legal and social concerns of citizens, the costs of goods and services, the books that influenced thought and education, and myriad other aspects of the material and intellectual life in New England.
From the cost of food and drink to the impact of the American Revolution, from a unique record of earthquakes in New England to smallpox outbreaks in Boston, Cambridge, and beyond, scholars with a wide range of interests will discover that the Harvard University Archives offers a wealth of 17th- and 18th-century resources. In addition to detailed records on these holdings, researchers will find that more than 13,000 pages from these holdings have been digitized and are available online.
Harvard in the 17th and 18th Centuries was made possible with generous support from Arcadia and from the Sidney Verba Fund.
See also Worlds of Change: Material from the 17th and 18th century North America for online access to 17th and 18th century collections held by the Harvard University Archives as well as the other special collections and archives at Harvard.