Books on Boxborough History
During the 241 years of Boxborough’s existence, there have been two books written about the Town’s history.
Late in the nineteenth century, a comprehensive history of Middlesex County was published by Samual Adams Drake, titled “History of Middlesex County, Massachusetts containing carefully prepared histories of every city and town in the county.” Encouraged by this work and by her friends, Lucie Caroline Hager felt “that a history of Boxborough printed in a small volume separately…would be favorably received” and set to work to write one.
Lucie was born in Littleton and moved to Boxborough when she married in 1882. She was a school teacher, bookkeeper, and a writer of prose and poetry. “Boxborough: A New England Town and its People,” the product of her efforts, was published in 1891.
As indicated by its title, the book is divided into two sections. The first half tells the history of the town for its roughly first 100 years. The second half presents biographical sketches of the prominent families who lived in town during that period. A biography of Lucie and a selection of her poems are included in the section on the Hager family.
Boxborough celebrated its Bicentennial in 1983. As part of that commemoration, four residents, Janet Calhoun, Susan DeStefano, Katherine Talmadge, and Elizabeth West, spent 18 months working with others to create “Boxborough: A Portrait of a Town: 1783-1983”.
As its introduction states, “Portrait” is a combination of thousands of pages of written records with hundreds of hours of oral interviews documenting the memories of people living in town. This sprightly written, copiously illustrated volume is organized by topic rather than chronology, e.g., “Government,” “Schools,” “Library.” It brings to life Boxborough’s history as a small farming town up until the 1960’s, and documents the changes in Boxborough as it grew rapidly through the 1970’s and early 1980s.
There are multiple copies of each book at Boxborough’s Sargent Memorial Library. Copies can also be purchased at the Boxborough Museum or by emailing the Boxborough Historical Society at BoxboroughHistoricalSociety@gmail.com.