Holocaust Memorial at the Mandell JCC in West Hartford and plaster model of same sculpture. Elbert Weinberg collection, Hartford History Center, Hartford Public Library.


Remembering the Hartford Circus Fire 70 years later

Even after 70 years, the tragedy of the Hartford Circus Fire haunts the city still. Having raged through the July 6, 1944, performance of...
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Hartford Circus Fire Project

The Hartford History Center at Hartford Public Library has begun collecting memorabilia, personal recollections, drawings and other reflections of the July 6, 1944 Hartford Circus Fire and its aftermath.
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Collection Spotlight: Photographs

Many people come to the History Center hoping to get a glimpse of Hartford in years past. We have several photograph collections that can help them do just that. To make it easier for patrons to browse our collections, most of the photographs have been photocopied.
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Visiting the Hartford History Center, Part IV

This is the final installment in our special series for American Archives Month. We welcome any further questions you may have. Please email or call us (860.695.6297) anytime. We will respond during our open hours, Tuesday – Saturday, 1-5PM.
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Visiting the Hartford History Center, Part III

Everyone is welcome to research in the History Center, regardless of whether you have a clearly defined topic when you first visit. Many times, if you tell us about your interests, we can point you to a collection likely to spark some ideas. Another way to formulate your ideas is to browse our subject files. Housed in the black file cabinets to the side of the entry door, the subject files have information on a variety of Hartford people, places, and ideas. Most of the information will be secondary sources, such as magazine articles about the topic.
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Collection Spotlight: City Directories

One of our favorite sources of information is the Hartford city directory. The History Center holds a complete run, from the 1820s (not published annually at that point) to 1979.
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Visiting the Hartford History Center, Part II

Now that you've taken care of the paperwork, you are ready to start researching. Some people arrive knowing exactly what they want to study, others need some guidance. Either - or somewhere in between - is perfectly fine! Our staff is ready and willing to help you no matter where you are in the research process.
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Collection Spotlight: The Ladies’ Scrap-Book

In the 19th century, Hartford was a major publishing center. Many of the books published during this time are held by the Hartford History Center. They cover a variety of topics, from Homer's The Odyssey, and volumes about the Campaign to Russia, to Hartford and Connecticut topics.
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Visiting the Hartford History Center, Part I

As you may already know, the Hartford History Center is located on the third floor of the downtown Hartford Library. Our room is in the front of the building, toward the ArtWalk (the Youth and Family Services department is on the opposite end of the floor).
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Collection spotlight: 1767 Almanac

One of the strengths of the Hartford History Center is our collection of pamphlets. This almanac from 1767 is among the earliest pieces in the collection. While the primary function of an almanac was as a calendar,
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Explore Our Catalog

Hartford Public Library's online catalog:

Explore Our Digital Repository

Hours and Locations

Hartford History Center, located on the third floor of the Downtown Hartford Public Library, is open Tuesday through Saturday, 1:00-5:00 p.m., and by appointment.