About the Fall River Room

Archives & Special Collections

The Fall River Public Library preserves and provides access to materials that document the history of Fall River. The Fall River Room is our dedicated space for local history materials, including city archival records, books on Fall River and New England history, works on genealogy, postcards, and special collections such as the Lizzie Borden Collection and Estes Collection (books by local authors).

Some local history collections, such as maps, newspapers, and yearbooks, have been digitized and can be viewed free online. Visit the Digital Collection on our Local History page.

Materials from the collection do not circulate, and some items require an appointment to view. Need more information or interested in setting up an appointment?

Email frweb@sailsinc.org or call the Reference Department: 508-324-2700, ext. 3.

Fall River textile workers


Lizzie Borden Collection

The Lizzie Borden Collection consists of biographies, nonfiction accounts of the murders and trial, fictionalized retellings of the story, plays, bibliographies, and news articles related to Lizzie Borden, her trial, and the Borden murders. These materials must be used in the library.

The Fall River Historical Society has photographs and artifacts relating to the murders. Images and information can also be found at the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast and the Lizzie Andrew Borden Virtual Museum and Library.

Lizzie Borden

Microfilm Collection

Fall River newspapers from the 19th through 21st century are available on microfilm in the Reference Room. Here is a list of Newspapers on Microfilm.

Early census records, vital records before 1889, and Fall River City Directories from 1853-1967 are available on microfilm. Later city directories are available in print. Many can also be accessed online.

Digital Collection

Our digital collection of local history resources is growing!

City Directories and historical maps can be found online in our Community History Archive, along with select local newspapers.

Additional digitized Fall River newspapers are available from 1859-1923, 1924-1965, 1998-2000, and a text-only version of the Fall River Herald News from 1999-current

Items in our digital collection, including Catholic school yearbooks and local postcards, may be found on the Internet Archive and Digital Commonwealth

The B.M.C. Durfee High School’s Keeley Library has a collection of local history materials, including a substantial yearbook collection.