historic imagesHistoric Images of the Town of Wakefield
A random sampling of photos and other historic images of the Town
of Wakefield, Massachusetts.

wakefield postcardsWakefield Postcards
A collection of postcards of Wakefield, Massachusetts, from the collections of Mr. William Walsh.

More Postcards from Wakefield’s Past
Postcards that depict classic as well as not-so-familiar Wakefield scenes from various eras.

wakefield churchesWakefield Churches
Wakefield is home to houses of worship reflecting a variety of
religious faiths. These photographs depict Wakefield’s churches,
past and present.

rattan-wickerWakefield’s Rattan/Wicker Furniture Industry
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Wakefield was home to a burgeoning rattan/wicker furniture industry, led by the Heywood-Wakefield Companies, founded by Cyrus Wakefield, for whom the
town is named.

pleasure islandPostcards from Pleasure Island
From 1959 to 1969, the town of Wakefield was host to the legendary theme/amusement park, “Pleasure Island.” These
postcards offer a flavor of the park that was called “The Disneyland of the East.”

payroImages from the Payro Collection
Joseph Payro was a local photographer, artist and photo
collector whose images of the community spanned decades.

curtisCamp Curtis Guild
Camp Curtis Guild, located on the Wakefield-Reading line, has been part of the military history of the region since the early 20th century. It is still used by the Massachusetts National Guard.

contemporaryContemporary Wakefield
Current and recent images of the town of Wakefield, Massachusetts.

VolpeJohn A. Volpe
John A. Volpe, a native of Wakefield, Massachusetts, was born
on December 8, 1908 in the Water Street home of his Italian immigrant parents. A Republican, Volpe was elected Governor of Massachusetts in 1960, 1964 and 1966. In 1968 he accepted the position of Secretary of Transportation in the administration of President Richard Nixon. In 1972, he became the first Italian-American to hold the position of US Ambassador to Italy. He served until 1977.

uphamElizabeth V. Upham
Born in Wakefield, Massachusetts on November 8, 1912, Elizabeth
V. Upham graduated from Wakefield High School in 1930. She graduated from Tufts University in 1934 and received her Masters Degree in Education two years later. In a career that began in 1936 and spanned more than 40 years at WHS, she was a beloved teacher, administrator and Dean of Girls. Dr. Upham was also a major benefactor of the Lucius Beebe Memorial Library in Wakefield, Massachusetts, leaving a substantial portion of her estate in a trust “to be used for the purchase of books and materials, particularly in history, literature and the social sciences.”

beebe farmThe Beebe Farm & Beebe Family Photos The Beebe Farm in Wakefield Massachusetts, circa 1890-1900. Once owned by Lucius Beebe and the Beebe Family, the property at 142 Main Street is presently owned by Richard A. Martino, who was kind enough to provide these photos.


mapsBeebe Library’s collection of historic maps of Wakefield and surrounding towns is now available online thanks to a grant administered by the Boston Public Library and federally funded with LSTA funds through the Mass. Board of Library Commissioners. The maps have been digitally scanned and are now part of Boston Public Library’s Norman B. Leventhal Map Collection, a superb online resource that includes more than 3,700 digitized maps from around the world, dating from the 15th century to the present. The collection is particularly strong in maps and atlases from the New England region, American Revolutionary War period, nautical charts, and world urban centers. Wakefield’s maps are also included in our local library catalog, with links to the online versions. Wakefield was the first public library in Massachusetts to add its historic maps to the Leventhal collection, and we are pleased to make them more widely available for browsing and research.

You can view the maps with a special built-in viewer, allowing you to zoom in closely to see fine detail. You can also download or print maps if you wish. All maps are also available in hard copy in the library’s Local History Room. Please ask at the Reference Desk if you would like to view a hard copy of a particular map.

calendarsThe Wakefield Municipal Gas and Light Department has produced a calendar of historic images of Wakefield for its customers each year since 1987. Research and photographs are provided with volunteer assistance by the Wakefield Historical Commission, the Wakefield Historical Society, the Wakefield Daily Item, and other individuals and organizations.

Beebe Library has scanned the images and transcribed the text for all of the calendars, allowing you to view them online. The calendar entries are available in our online catalog, where you can also search the full text by keyword. Below are links allowing you to see the entries for any particular year. All calendars are also available in hard copy in the library’s Archives Room. Please ask at the Reference Desk if you would like to view the hard copy of a particular calendar.