Local History Resources

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Digitized Historical Belmont Newspapers – New as of Spring 2017!

We are very pleased to announce that thanks to our Community Preservation Act Grant, our collection of local historical newspapers has now been digitized.

From within the library, you may access our entire collection of Historical Belmont Newspapers, 1889-2015.  From outside the library you may access Historical Belmont Newspapers, 1889-1962.

View our online guide to Getting Started With Digitized Newspapers.


Historical Belmont Newspapers (on microfilm)

The Belmont Bulletin, Belmont Tribune, Belmont Courier, Belmont Citizen, Belmont Citizen Herald are still available on microfilm in the library.  This collection includes:

  • Belmont Bulletin Mar. 8, 1890 – Feb. 26, 1898
  • Belmont Tribune Nov.14, 1902 – Apr. 14, 1916
  • Belmont Courier Jan. 2, 1889 – Dec. 1, 1917
  • Belmont Citizen Mar. 29, 1919 – Mar. 31, 1988
  • Belmont Herald Jan. 5, 1945 – April 1, 1988
  • Belmont Citizen Herald April 7, 1988 – present

More Digitized Collections

Thanks to our membership in the Digital Commonweath, the Massachusetts’ hub of the Digital Public Library of America, we are able to have selected portions of the library’s historical collection digitized.

Belmont Residents Lists from 1911-2009 are available in the Internet Archive.  Note that Residents Lists for some years were missing, or deemed too fragile to digitize. If you wish to view a year that is not digitized, please call the Belmont Historical Society at 617-489-2000 ext. 2878 to determine if a print copy is available in the Claflin Room.

Belmont High School Yearbooks from 1922 to 2016 can be viewed in the Internet Archive.  Note that most, but not all years, were available to be digitized.  Print copies of BHS yearbooks are held in the Claflin room.


Claflin Room

The Claflin Room, (formerly the Belmont Room), houses important items of local history. The Belmont Historical Society oversees the care and maintenance of the room, and has volunteers who open the room to library patrons during the hours noted on their website.  The Belmont Historical Society can be reached at [email protected] or by phone, 617-489-2000 ext.2878.

Learn More


Books About Belmont

Peruse a list of books about the history of Belmont.


Obituary Research in Belmont

Find the date on which an obituary appeared in the Belmont Herald, using our Belmont Herald Obituary Index,  January 1, 1945 – April 1, 1988.

Obituary Index, Organized by “Known as” Name

Obituary Index, Organized by “Former” or “Maiden” Name

The dates indexed begin with January 1, 1945, the first issue of The Belmont Herald newspaper, and end with April 1, 1988, the last issue before it merged with The Belmont Citizen newspaper.  You can search for the actual obituary using our newspaper microfilm collection at the library.

Please ask a member of our Reference team (617-993-2870 or Ask a Librarian)  if you would like help searching the Obituary Index. If you do not find the name you are looking for in the Belmont Herald Index, see “Vital Records” below.

The Belmont Library thanks the many library volunteers who spent hours scrolling through reels of microfilm looking at pages of newspapers for death notices. The project began in 2007 and ended in 2015.


Vital Records (Births, Deaths, & Marriages)

The City Clerk’s Office keeps records of births if the parents were Belmont residents, deaths of Belmont residents, and marriages if they filed their intentions in Belmont. Staff will give simple information over the phone; or a certified document ($20.00) must be requested in writing. These records will give a date of death which then will help pinpoint in which issue of the Belmont Herald or Belmont Citizen to look for an obituary.

Ellen O’Brien Cushman, Town Clerk
Town Hall
455 Concord Avenue
Belmont, MA 02478

[email protected]

Hours: Monday – Friday, 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Telephone: 617-993-2600; FAX: 617-993-2601

Visit the Belmont Town Clerk’s Website for more information.

Cemeteries in Belmont

The Belmont Cemetery and Highland Meadow Cemetery (Dedicated October 20, 2007) are the two cemeteries in Belmont.  The Belmont Cemetery is located at the intersection of Grove Street and Huron Avenue.  Highland Meadow Cemetery is located at #700 Concord Avenue.  Going up Concord Avenue from the Police Station/Town Hall, the cemetery land begins on your left. The entrance is opposite Somerset Street.

Cemetery records are kept by the Cemetery division of the Department of Public Works.

Staff will give burial information over the phone. There is a fee for written genealogical requests – $10.00 (up to 5 people).

Belmont Cemetery Division
121 Grove Street
Belmont, MA 02478

Hours: Monday – Friday; 7:00 A.M. – 3:30 P.M.
Telephone: (617) 993-2710 FAX: (617) 489-0344

Visit the Town’s Parks and Cemetery Division Website for more information.


Narrated Slideshow

Belmont, the Town of Farms Created and narrated by Jane Sherwin for One Book, One Belmont 2009. July, 2009.


Oral History Recordings

The Belmont Story Project (BSP) is a local, oral-history recording project, modeled after NPR’s StoryCorps. BSP encourages Belmont resident’s to share their stories, preserving them for future generations.  To find out more, or schedule an appointment, contact Nancy McColm at 617-993-2870.

Listen to BSP Recordings

The Belmont Story Project is a collaboration of the Belmont Council on Aging, Belmont Historical Society, Belmont Media Center, the Belmont Citizen-Herald, and the Belmont Public Library.


For assistance with local history questions, contact Nancy McColm at [email protected] or 617-993-2870.