The Merriam-Gilbert Public Library’s local history and genealogy collection includes:

  • The Archie Jay Collection

Local Historian, Archie Jay spent many years collecting, cataloging, organizing field trips and sharing his knowledge about the towns that make up what was the original Quaboag Plantation.  He had a special interest in West Brookfield and devoted time to several projects including the conservation of the Old Methodist Cemetery located on Lyon Road in town. A collection of Archie’s historical work has been donated to the Merriam-Gilbert Public Library and is housed in the Local History Alcove on the second floor.

  • History of West Brookfield including maps
  • Vital records from many towns throughout the Commonwealth dating back to 1800s
  • Town Annual Reports from 1849-present
  • “A History of West Brookfield” by Jeffrey Fiske is available to borrow and sold by the Historical Commission in the Library.  This is a thoroughly researched book on the history of West Brookfield
  • Volumes of Great Events by Famous Historians through 1919, Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors of the Revolutionary and Civil Wars
  • War Records of Servicemen from WWI, WWII, and the Korean War
  • Information on Rice Fountain, Salem Cross Inn, Rock House, Famous Families and more

The materials in the Local History/Genealogy section do not circulate; however, photocopies may be made on the first floor of the library.  Please ask the librarian when you arrive for more details.

TIP: When searching in the C/W Mars library catalog, do a keyword search for “West Brookfield Historical Papers” to find more.

If you are looking for more specific information regarding the Archie Jay Collection, please contact the West Brookfield Historical Commission and West Brookfield Historical Society.

Other Local History Resources


West Brookfield Historical Commission
Contact Person: Richard Rossman, Chairman

Quaboag Historical Society
Contact People: Amy Dugas and Bill Jankins

Brookfields Research

Robert Wilder Maps