Boxes for Books

If you’re a member of the Historical Society, or if you’ve visited our headquarters recently, you may have heard of our “Boxes for Books” fundraiser.  The idea is simple: with a $10 donation, we can purchase a custom made box for one of our many rare books.  The Historical Society of Montgomery County has about 300 books published prior to 1850 in its collection.  All kinds of genres are included: religious works, novels, military science, history, medicine, children’s books, school books, and books printed in Montgomery County.

Since its beginning a year ago, the Boxes for Books drive has collected over $1000!  Last week the first shipment of boxes arrived at the headquarters.

The box of boxes

The box of boxes

Each flat box gets matched to its book, then it gets assembled.

That's me assembling a box

That’s me assembling a box

The acid free box will protect the book from light, temperature fluctuations, bugs, and other forms of environmental damage for a century.


Finally, the book is labeled with the name(s) of the donor and often a credit line in memory or in honor of a loved one.


If you’d like to make a contribution to Boxes for Books, come on down to our headquarters or give us a call at 610-272-0297.

Norristown – Then and Now

E Main St

Currently, the Historical Society of Montgomery County is working on a project to scan the thousands of historic photographs in our collection.  While scanning this afternoon, I came across a couple of nice photographs of nineteenth-century Norristown, and I thought it would be interesting to see how these spots look today.  This image is identified as 452, 454, and 456 E. Main St.  The gentleman in the picture is a Dr. Bradley.

Here is the street view of the same houses from Google Maps:

500 main

This picture shows something we don’t see too  much of anymore – a harness shop, once located at 113 E. Main St.

Fulton Harness

And here’s the same spot today from Google Maps Street View:

113 main

This block didn’t survive as well as the 500 block did, but it’s fun to see how things change around us.  We should have more interesting historic pictures as the scanning project continues.

Veteran’s Day

On November 11, 1918 the guns fell silent as the Great War came to an end.  The Paris edition of the New York Herald covered the armistice this way:


The Historical Society’s headquarters will be closed on November 11th in honor of Veteran’s Day.  Everyone at the Historical Society of Montgomery County is grateful for the many sacrifices of the men and women in our armed forces.

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” John Fitzgerald Kennedy