Collections

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Collections

Guide to The Library

The Dyer’s collection consists of approximately 14,000 books, including general U.S. history books, a notable collection of Civil War monographs, Massachusetts town histories, Massachusetts business directories from 1867-1919, biographies and an extensive collection of genealogy books.

Sam Dyer Room

Rotating exhibits are found in the Sam Dyer Room as well as biography cases for Moses Arnold and Reverend Jesse Jones. The Old Abington Commemorative Quilt celebrating the 275th anniversary of the founding of Abington hangs in this room.

Marietta Dyer Room

General history books and biographies and books by local authors are located in the Marietta Dyer Room.

~ Subject Files ~

One of the gems in the Dyer's vast collection are the Subject Files. These document people, institutions and topics related to the towns of Abington, Rockland and Whitman, MA and other events that occurred in the area.

The Biography Files are filled with tid-bit treasures about the daily lives of those who lived in Abington, Rockland and Whitman. Most often collected from newspaper clippings, you will learn the stories about the wealthy and famous to regular people. There are stories about shoe factory owners sponsoring town-wide events to small notices about neighbors enjoying coffee and a game of whist, and so much more!

Col. Joseph Murphy Room

Most of the genealogy books and resources in the Dyer's collection are shelved in the Murphy Room. The following is a taste of the vast number of resources found here.

Massachusetts Town and City histories are shelved in alphabetical order, from Abington to Wrentham & Cape Cod Town Histories. You will also find county histories for Middlesex, Bristol, Essex, Hampden, Hampshire, Plymouth, Norfolk, Barnstable, and Worcester and a history of the Connecticut Valley.

The Dyer Library Collection

Documents

The collection is a primary resource for the study of Old Abington from the Colonial period to modern day, including diaries, letters, business account books, genealogies and early Old Abington documents.

Martha Campbell - Correspondence   

Maps

The map collection of the library consists of local maps for the town of Abington, Rockland, and Whitman — illustrating the history and development of these towns. Highlights include,

Military History

Information about residents of Old Abington (Abington, Rockland, and Whitman) who served or were involved in the military from Colonial times through World War II. The Dyer is actively working to increase its collection regarding those who served from WW II to the present.

Highlights from our Military History collection include,

William Buckley - GAR Personal War Sketch    Union and Confederate Navies in The War of The Rebellion

Honor Roll

The names of individuals from Old Abington (Abington, Rockland, and Whitman) who made the ultimate sacrifice from the French and Indian War through World War II. Names are continuing to be added to the Honor Roll as we gather information from collections.

Honor Roll »

Newspapers

Our collection consists of local newspapers including the Abington Standard, Rockland Standard, and Whitman Times.

The local news columns in 19th and early 20th century papers will often include details that range from announcing a family's visiting relatives and mentioning the town in which they live, to social events with the names of all who attended. They may also mention where a family moved. Since the middle 20th century, there have been fewer personal details found in newspapers, although a thorough search of all issues is still suggested because of this unpredictability.

The Dyer Memorial Library has a collection of printed newspapers — many uncataloged — available for use. Some of our holdings are missing issues or are incomplete.

Rockland Standard Newspaper

Photographs & Postcards

The photographic archives at the library consist of local area images of Abington, Rockland and Whitman including glass plate negatives, cartes-de-visite, cabinet cards and images produced through modern photographic processes. The subjects include people, street scenes, places, businesses, and schools. The library also has a large postcard collection for the three towns

Abington Depot    

Artifacts

The artifacts in our collection are primarily of local and antiquarian interest. The range of artifacts encompasses examples of house wares, furniture, apothecary, fire, clocks, tools, textiles, and military ephemera. Of special interest are items belonging to General Benjamin Lincoln, John L. Sullivan, and the Dyer family. Also in our collection are examples of pottery made by John Benner, objects from the shoe making trade, and Sandwich glass.

Firefighter Hats     Spectacles