Welcome to The Military Historical Society of Massachusetts

The Military Historical Society of Massachusetts, founded in 1876 by John Codman Ropes, is the nation's oldest incorporated military history society. The original membership lists boast legendary names from Civil War history, including Gen. William T. Sherman U.S. Army, and Lt. Gen James Longstreet, Confederate States Army. A future admiral, who catapulted to fame in the Spanish-American War, Commander George Dewey, enhanced the rolls, along with others whose names are found elsewhere on this site. The Society's purpose is to encourage studies of United States military history and that of other countries, the maintenance of social meetings for lectures and discussion of the history and cooperation with organizations with similar goals and purposes. Read more about our history and purpose.


The Society presently consists of approximately one hundred-fifty members, most of whom are resident in the Greater Boston area. The society is governed by a board of directors and officers. The Society sponsors two types of meetings in addition to the annual and semiannual business meetings. Four or five social meetings are held annually. The usual format is a social hour followed by dinner and then a presentation by a guest lecturer or member.

View additional information on officers | directors | events

2014 Contest Winner Announced

2014 Essay Competition Photo L to R:
Mr. Gresh Lattimore, Cadet James Kiefner,
and LCDR David W. Graham (President, MHSM)

Archives and Library

A listing of past activities, summaries of speaker presentations and photographs are available.

In the1890's, one of the stated purposes of the Society was "the establishment of a reading room and library devoted to" military history. This was accomplished when the Cadet Armory was built (as is described under the origins and background of the Society. The reading room and library were maintained until the Armory was sold in the 1960's. The library collection is now on permanent loan to the Mugar Library at Boston University. Read more about the collection | Visit the Mugar Library website.


2014 Essay Contest Winner: James Kiefner.

Read winning essay!

Upcoming Events

"The Battle of Savo Island during WW-II and the loss of the USS Quincy (CA-39)".
Friday noon, September 12, 2014. (Registration : Topic Summary) <events>

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