Monday, December 3rd

WMHS Auditorium 7:00 PM

Author and lecturer Anthony Sammarco will take a nostalgic look back at Christmas in Boston.

In 1659, the Massachusetts Bay Colony banned the celebration of Christmas, deeming it a period of seasonal excess without Biblical authority. It would not be until 1856 that Christmas Day became a state holiday. By the mid-nineteenth century a German immigrant named Charles Follen introduced the Christmas tree to Boston, and shortly thereafter Louis Prang introduced his colorful Christmas cards, the first in Boston. During the next century, Boston would see caroling and hand bell ringing on Beacon Hill, traditional New England displays on Boston Common and in the city’s many department stores. Christmas Traditions in Boston revisits the memories of the past and brings together the shared tradition of how Bostonians celebrated the holiday season. The book will be for sale at the talk.

Referred to as the "Balzac of Boston History" by the Boston Globe, Anthony Sammarco is a noted historian and author of over seventy books on the history and development of Boston, and he lectures widely on the history of his native city.

DVDs  of  "Voices from Vietnam" are now available for on-line purchase

DVDs are $15 plus $3 shipping each

This exhibit is on-going during our open hours - Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays from 10:00 am to Noon.

Monday, April 9, 2018 at 7:00 PM


Kathleen Kaldis, Genealogist, is a member in the Daughters of the American Revolution, MDAR, and the Lexington DAR Chapter. She has served in many leadership positions within the Society at the national, state and chapter levels. During her tenure as Chapter Registrar in the Lexington Chapter, she volunteered her time actively researching lineages, gathering proof, and doing whatever it took to complete prospective member’s applications. Through her efforts and research contributions, the Lexington Chapter gained over a hundred members. She passed the DAR Genealogical Education Programs I, II, and III, and carries the title of NSDAR Volunteer Genealogist. She volunteers as a DAR Balcony Volunteer at the DAR Library every June for the DAR Continental Congress. In 2013 & 2016, she was MDAR’s Outstanding Volunteer Genealogist of the Year. She has conducted and participated in many genealogy workshops throughout the state for both prospective members of the DAR, and for the general public wishing to learn about their lineages.


In addition to the DAR, Kathleen is very active within the genealogy community. She serves on the board of the Massachusetts Genealogical Council as their Newsletter Director. She represented the MGC at the PBS Genealogy Roadshow in Boston, Providence, and Houston, TX. She is a member of the Harriman Family Association, and has served on their board as their Family Researcher and Reunion Coordinator. In 2010, as a part of the HFA’s Annual Reunion in Bath, she presented a genealogy program detailing the genealogical resources of coastal Maine. Kathleen is also the family historian for the MA branch of the McPherson Family, descendants of William and Ann Campbell (Cape Breton, NS). Kathleen successfully completed the Genealogical Research Program offered by Boston University’s Center for Professional Education in 2016. Current Genealogical Society Memberships: NEHGS, DAR, MSOG, NEAPG, CCGS, MGS, HFA, DCCI.


Join us for a PowerPoint Presentation on the history of the James L. McKeown Boys and Girls Club of Woburn. Sue Ellen-Holland and Sheila McElhiney will show many pictures from the early years to the newly rebuilt club that just reopened this past September. There will also be a brief video tour of the new club and all the upgrades and ammnities! Presentation begins at 7:00 PM and there will be light refreshements following the show. This show is free and open to the public.

Monday, February 5th, 2018

ALAN EARLS - Guest Speaker




From sports to politics, food to finance, aviation to engineering, to bitter disputes over simple boundaries themselves, New England’s feuds have peppered the region’s life for centuries. They’ve been raw and rowdy, sometimes high minded and humorous, and in a place renowned for its deep sense of history, often long-running and legendary. There are even some that will undoubtedly outlast the region’s ancient low stonewalls. 

 Ted Reinstein, a native New Englander and local writer, offers us fascinating stories, some known, others not so much, from the history of New England in this fun, accessible book. Bringing to life many of the fights, spats, and arguments that have, in many ways, shaped the area itself, Reinstein demonstrates what it really means to be Wicked Pissed.

About the author:  Ted Reinstein has been a reporter for “Chronicle,” WCVB-TV/Boston’s award-winning…and America’s longest-running, locally-produced…nightly news magazine since 1997. In addition, he is a regular contributor for the station’s political roundtable show and writes a weekly opinion column. He lives just west of Boston with his wife and two daughters. He is also the author of New England Notebook and the newly released New England’s General Stores: Exploring an American Classic.

Saturday, July 22, 2017 - Library Field

The City of Woburn’s 375th Anniversary Committee has a great day of summertime baseball family fun and a vintage baseball tournament planned for Saturday, July 22, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at Library Field. Admission is free of charge.

The day kicks off at 10 a.m. with Red Sox baseball and Fenway Park right here in Woburn, courtesy of the traveling Red Sox Showcase.  The traveling showcase truck is making a stop here in Woburn, complete with batting cages, pitching stations, a Steal 2nd Challenge, and virtual reality experience.

In addition, the Red Sox are also bringing the World Series Trophy (10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.) and Wally the Green Monster (11 a.m. to 12 p.m.).  Stop by and catch some Red Sox fever!  All children must be accompanied by an adult. Save time by going online to complete release forms before you arrive at

Woburn’s summer baseball fever continues at noon with an “1867 rematch” of two top-notch area semi-professional vintage league baseball teams. The winner of the vintage rematch will face a team of local celebrities including Former New England Patriot Garin Veris (now athletic director at Mass Maritime Academy), Mayor Scott Galvin, Woburn High School Varsity Softball Coach Courtney (Nelson) Sigsbury and players, Woburn High School Varsity Baseball Coach Joe Wells and players, Woburn Little League Directors Mark Cavicchi and Tom Skeffington, Woburn Recreation Director Rory Lindstrom, City Council President Rich Haggerty, and State Rep James Dwyer.

The games will feature fun play-by-play coverage by local sports announcer Nick Perenick.  Lord Hobo will be on hand for the vintage games with a selection of its cold fresh brews for the adults in the crowd.  Proper ID required.

The 19th century-styled games will feature top-notch area vintage league players and 1864 rules that include pitching the ball underhand from 45 feet away (not the 60 feet of today) and no fielding gloves (just bare hands).  Add to that some rules such as the allowance of leading and stealing, and you’ve got a great, fast-paced game—just as it was played in the 1800s.

We will also have members of the Woburn Moose Club and Woburn Youth Soccer on hand to cook plenty of hamburgers, hot dogs, sausages and peppers, and soft refreshments, as well as a visitor photo booth.  The City is grateful to all of our 375th Anniversary sponsors and volunteers for their support in bringing this event to the Community free of charge. For more information about our sponsors and the yearlong 375th Anniversary Celebration go to

Saturday, June 17th, 2017  10:00 AM to 1:00 PM

Historical Art and Essay Program and Ceremony on Woburn Common

About 2,500 students involved. Kindergarten through Middle School history art lesson, and High School historical essay contest. Contest is run during the school year, culminating in placement of winning art banners around Woburn Common and Woburn Center; and ribbon winners in the City Hall Rotunda. Celebration ceremony with students, parents on Woburn Common, with a collation in City Hall parking lot, featuring a variety of food and beverage vendors.


Monday ~ May 22, 2017





The First Burial Ground has been in need of repair for generations and a project has begun to restore these hallowed grounds that house the final resting place of Woburn’s early settlers, military heroes, church leaders and oldest families. You can watch the award winning brief film by Plasma Films below of the GPR (ground penetrating radar) performed on both the First and Second Burial Grounds in June of 2016 where 431 unmarked graves in First Burial Ground and 198 unmarked graves in the Second Burial were discovered and documented.


Preserving Woburn's Past Using Ground Penetrating Radar from Brian Ouellette on Vimeo.

April 10, 2017


by Brian Sheehy

This presentation by Brian Sheehy on 19th century Base Ball was a prelude to the upcoming vintage Base Ball game at Library Field on July 22nd, 2017. Sponsored by Liberty Bay Credit Union.

Have you ever heard of the Lowell Base Ball Club or the Tri Mountains?  Did you know after the Civil War, base ball (two words back then) teams were springing up all over the country... including Woburn?  


To help get you in the mood for the baseball season, what better way than to learn about the history of baseball! Please join us for an evening with guest speaker and 16-year veteran vintage base ball player Brian Sheehy. Brian is also a baseball historian and captain of the Essex Base Ball Organization. This lecture will look at the development of baseball in the 1860’s both nationally and in Massachusetts.  Brian will also look at some of the clubs that were formed in Woburn including the Mishawum Base Ball Club.


So come learn about the rules and vintage uniforms and equipment used to prepare you for Woburn 375th  anniversary's Vintage/Old Time Baseball Tournament on July 22, 2017 at Library Field.

Monday, March 13th, 2017 at 7:00 PM

This Plasma Films production directed by Brian Ouellette  chronicles Coach "Rocky" Nelson's final season as Woburn Tanner head football coach.  He worked for 17 years as an assistant coach before he got the head coach position in 1986.  He spent the next 31 years doing what he loved - coaching the Woburn Tanners!  The film focuses on Coach Rocky's final season all the way up to the last game on Thanksgiving Day, 2016 where two rival 5 and 5 teams, Woburn & Winchester were fighting for a winning season and with the Tanners determined to send Coach Rocky off with a win!


February 11th and 12th

Winter Family Festival and Ice Hockey Classic at Woburn’s Leland Park, featuring sleigh rides, ice skating, ice sculptures, s’mores and hot chocolate by local Boy Scouts, ice skating, vendors offering food and refreshments, and fireworks.

 On Sunday, January 8th, the Woburn 375th anniversary kickoff featured an Interfaith Ceremony and History with keynote speaker Senator Ed Markey at the First Congregational Church.

Thanks to all who participated, attended and helped organize the Historic Interfaith ceremony that officially kicked off the Woburn 375th Anniversary celebrations for 2017!  Stay tuned for more events all year including the ice hockey tournament and Family Winter Carnival at Leland Park on Saturday, February 11th. 

THE "GELLY" - 97 Years of Atlantic Gelatin

"Gelly" DVDs can now be ordered online with a credit card.

The Third Grade Trolley Tour

Here are some pictures from this years tour thanks to Ellen Hamilton Photography



Saturday, June 20th ~ Woburn Common

Woburn celebrates 375th anniversary of settlement

To see additional pictures click here: Ellen Hamilton Photography


Open Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays 10 am to noon at the BURDETT MANSION, 7 MISHAWUM ROAD, WOBURN

There will be another open house on June 27th from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.  All are welcome to attend.  There will be light refreshments served.

Photo: Brian Ouellette

The exhibit honors the 100th anniversary of the beginning of WWI in 1914. The US joined the war in 1917 when over 1,400 men and women from Woburn served as part of the American Expeditionary Forces (AEF) and on the homefront. On display are US, German, French, Italian and Canadian artifacts.


This is a great educational opportunity for young and old alike to learn about the Great War and the sacrifices of our Woburn men and women.


The exhibit will be available for viewing Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 12 noon through the end of June.




Monday, April 6th at 7:00 PM in the Flaherty Auditorium at Woburn Memorial High School

THE HARVARD KROKODILOES - The WMHS a cappella group also performed.

From Cambridge to Cape Town to Carnegie Hall, the Harvard Krokodiloes have delighted audiences worldwide with their unique blend of a cappella harmony and humor. Founded back in 1946 at the historic Hasty Pudding Club, the Krokodiloes are Harvard University’s oldest and finest a cappella singing group, now performing for audiences all over the Greater Boston area, the United States, and the world. Having derived their name from the ancient Greek word for crocodile, the group now consists of twelve tuxedo-clad male undergraduates, singing music from the Great American Songbook and beyond.
The Krokodiloes present a polished, professional product, fine tuned in the course of performing over 200 concerts every year. In addition to the more than 100 concerts that the group performs stateside during the school year, each summer for the past 33 years the Krokodiloes have embarked on a 10 week, 6 continent world tour. During that time the Krokodiloes have spread their musical goodwill to over 100 countries and performed for kings, presidents, princes, and ambassadors in all corners of the globe. The Kroks have also made Bermuda their Spring Break home for over 40 years, entertaining at the finest hotels and restaurants. In their almost 7 decade history, the Kroks have also recorded over 30 albums and performed in the finest concert halls across the world including the Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, and the Sydney Opera House.

Monday, March 23rd - 7:00 pm in the Flaherty Auditorium at Woburn Memorial High School:

Silent Film Fest

Richard Hughes transported us back 100 years showing three vintage silent comedy films while providing live authentic piano accompaniment. A cartoon and Movie Tone news reel was also shown.  

Sponsored by: Robert Maguire.

Merry Minstrels

Sunday, March 15th at 4:00 pm at Spence Farm

The Merry Minstrels performed a St. Patricks Day program that was uplifitng and fun for all.

Beantown Swing Orchestra

Monday, December 15th, 2014

An Evening of Swing

Featuring the Beantown Swing Orchestra and

American Idol Finalist John Stevens


The Beantown Swing Orchestra performed vintage swing era classics as well as popular and original custom songs. The 21-piece orchestra featured the extraordinary vocal talent of John Stevens, an American Idol finalist and Frank Sinatra crooner and Cara Campinelli.    Please visit to listen to clips of their music.

All proceeds from the holiday concert will support Woburn Historical Society’s Partners in Education Program for Woburn Students, specifically the upcoming 2015 Third Grade Trolley Tour.

November 17, 2014

Howard Johnson's

Anthony Sammarco

Author Anthony Sammarco  spoke about the history of Howard Johnson’s, the orange-roofed ice cream restaurant that began as one store in Quincy, MA during the Great Depression and grew to a nationwide empire that delighted generations of families with 28 famous ice cream flavors.

October 20th, 2014

"OLD IRONSIDES" - Our National Treasure

We  premiered a film depicting USS Constitution's role and Woburn's participation in the War of 1812.  The film featured an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of the ship arranged by Woburn resident, Petty Officer Mark Comeiro who recently completed a four- year assignment aboard USS Constitution and retired from the US Navy.

The film was created by the award winning team of Kathy Lucero, Bob Maguire and Brian Ouellette. 

Woburn Historical Society Hosts WGA Art Exhibit

The Woburn Historical Society is pleased to host the Woburn Guild of Artists (WGA) art exhibit currently on display at the Society’s office located at 7 Mishawum Road, Woburn.  The exhibit is open for public viewing on Monday, Wednesday, and Saturdays, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon, until October 29th. 

The exhibit features original works of art including oil and watercolor paintings, pastels, drawings, and photography presented by the talented members of the WGA.

Please come view the beautiful art pieces displayed in one of Woburn’s grand historic homes known locally as the Burdett Mansion.

For information about upcoming and previous Woburn Historical Society programs and exhibits, please visit

Monday, June 16, 2014 at 7:00 pm



Monday, June 16th in the Flaherty Auditorium at Woburn Memorial High School was the premiere of "Striking a Blow for Freedom — Woburn Patriots," a film that depicts the rich and patriotic history of Woburn’s founding fathers and the traditions that carried through to Woburn’s patriots who fought for freedom in the Revolutionary War. The film was created by the award-winning team of Kathy Lucero, Bob Maguire and Brian Ouellette.


Monday, May 19, 2014


Bob Martin

Sue Ellen Holland presented a PowerPoint program illustrating her father, Bob Martin's memoir.  The announcement of the attack on Pearl Harbor would have a direct and personal impact on him.  In his book, Bob gives his first-hand account of what he witnessed, felt, lost and gained from his 18th birthday and enlistment with the United States Marine Corps to the point at which the US dropped the atomic bombs on Nagasaki and Hiroshima.  The presentation also included recollections of Woburn and several of its soldiers during WWII and its aftermath.

Marines in Okinawa


John S. True Home 1885

 The exhibit features over 200 pictures of homes from the mid-17th century through the late 19th century, showing Woburn’s diverse historic homes from all parts of the city and the beautiful architecture of the day. Included in the exhibit is Woburn’s oldest house, the Loammi Baldwin Mansion, a Federal style house built in 1661. Many homes are still standing today as shown in their corresponding “today” pictures, and many homes have been torn down.


 For further information, please visit the society’s website or call 781-933-5002.


Thursday, March 6th, 2014

Hosted in collaboration with the Friends of the Woburn Public LibraryAnthony Amore, director of security at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and author of Stealing Rembrandts, recounted notorious art thefts from around the world, including the infamous 1990 heist where a pair of thieves disguised as Boston police officers entered the Gardner Museum and stole thirteen priceless works of art.

Wednesday July 3rd, 2013

Re-dedication of USS Maine Cowl on Woburn common. 100th anniversary (1913-2013) from Brian Ouellette on Vimeo.

Monday, May 13th, 2013

"From the Wilderness Came Courage, Faith and Community: The History of Churches in Woburn"

Swedish Evangelical Church, Montvale Ave., 1945

The Woburn Historical Society premiered their lastest film titled “From the Wilderness Came Courage, Faith and Community: The History of Churches in Woburn,” The film looked at the early history and founding of 18 Woburn churches and their religious and social contributions to the Woburn community.   A presentation by the award winning team of Kathy Lucero and Bob Maguire and produced by Brian Ouellette of Plasma Films, the film included significant contributions from church pastors and members.  A copy of the film can be pre-ordered by clicking on the link below. You can print out the order form and send to PO box listed.  The film will ship next week.  

DVD order form
DVD order form newsletter 5-13-13 WITH S[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [128.4 KB]



Billed as Boston's answer to Disneyland, Pleasure Island opened on June 22, 1959.  William Hawkes, president of Childlife Magazine, and executives at Cabot, Cabot and Forbes collaborated with Marco Engineering of Los Angeles to build what was called the "Disneyland of the East."  Pleasure Island rose from the wetlands off of Route 128 into an 80-acre theme park.  Through photographs, Pleasure Island recalls memories of boat rides to Pirate Cove, searching for the great white whale, driving a Jenny car, getting dizzy in the Slanty Shanty, and taking a ride on Old Smoky.  At Pleasure Island, children and children at heart entered into a world that traditional amusement parks could not provide, where character actors continually put on a show and the entire park was the stage. 


Robert McLaughlin is a Wakefield resident with an interest in local history.  He has been researching Pleasure Island since 2000 and is cofounder of the Friends of Pleasure Island, which was established to collect images, film, oral history, and artifacts relating to the park.  He has selected images from private collections and the Friends of Pleasure Island's archives to tell the story of Wakefield's own Disneyland of the East.  The Images of America series celebrates the history of neighborhoods, towns, and cities across the country.  Using archival photographs, each title represents the distinctive stories from the past that shape the character of the community today.  Arcadia is proud to play a part in the preservation of local heritage, making history available to all. 



Moby Dick Hunt at Pleasure Island



Plasma Films production entitled: "IN THE CAUSE OF LIBERTY; WOBURN IN THE CIVIL WAR" showed lives of Woburn soldiers and the battles they were in; Gettysburg, Weldon Railroad, Petersburg, etc.  This production was made in collaboration with the Trustees and contributions of the Woburn Public Library, with additional historic contributions by Leon Basile.


The DVD will be available for sale for $25 and will include a supplement containing many pictures of Woburn Civil War soldiers.




A capacity crowd of 700 were on hand to enjoy this amazing performance.


A special thank you to John and Kathy Flaherty for their generous donation making this program possible.



Dr. Tynan was available post performance for a "meet and greet" where his CDs and books were on sale for purchase and fro autographs. 





Woburn Historical Society's Farm Film wins two Telly Awards!

Photo by Ellen Hamilton

We are happy to announce that our 2011 film on the farming industry in Woburn titled Woburn: A Farming Community has been awarded two Telly Awards!  Click on the picture above for more information


Woburn: A Farming Community from Brian Ouellette on Vimeo.

(More details to follow)