Essential NON-Genealogy Books about New England

Yesterday on my Facebook wall I asked my friends what they considered essential non-genealogy books about New England.  The list they provided was diverse and fascinating.  Some of the books I have already in my personal library.  Others I had heard of but never read.  And still other were completely new to me.  The list was so good I'm sharing it here with Roots & Rambles readers.  Maybe you'll be inspired to read one or two of these before the summer ends.

Thanks to all my friends for contributing to this list!

Essential Non-Genealogy Books about New England

Atwater, Edward Elias. History of the Colony of New Haven to its Absorption into Connecticut.

Beston, Henry. The Outermost House.

Boorstin, Daniel. The Americans: The Colonial Experience.

Cronon, William. Changes in the Land: Indians, Colonists, and the Ecology of New England.

Deetz, James. In Small Things Forgotten.

Deetz, James. The Times of Their Lives: Life, Love, and Death in Plymouth Colony.

Ferrero, Pat and Elain Hedges, Julie Silber. Hearts & Hands, The Influence of Women & Quilts on American Society.

Fischer, David Hackett. Paul Revere's Ride.

Fischer, David Hackett. Albion's Seed.

Gross, Robert A. The Minutemen and their World.

Hoftadter, Richard. America at 1750.

Kurlansky, Mark. Cod: A Biography of the Fish that Changed the World.

Lepore, Jill. The Name of War.

Ludwig, Allan I. Graven images: New England Stonecarving and its Symbols, 1650-1815.

Morgan, Edmund S. The Puritan Family.

Nutt, Charles. History of Worcester and its People. (available for viewing on Google Books)

Philbrick, Nathaniel. Mayflower.

Puleo, Stephen. Dark Tide: The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919.

Russell, Howard S. A Long, Deep Furrow: Three Centuries of Farming in New England.

Schultz, Eric B. and Michael J. Tougias. King Philip's War: The History and Legacy of America's Forgotten Conflict.

Smith, Wynifred Staples. Pines and Pioneers.

Thorson, Robert. Stone by Stone: The Magnificent History in New England's Stone Walls.

Ulrich, Laurel Thatcher. The Age of Homespun: Objects and Stories in the Creation of an American Myth. (2001).

Ulrich, Laurel Thatcher. A Midwife’s Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard based on her Diary, 1785–1812. (1990).

Ulrich, Laurel Thatcher. Good Wives: Image and Reality in the Lives of Women in Northern New England, 1650-1750. (1982).

Wagner, David. The Poorhouse: America's Forgotten Institution.

Watters, David. The Encyclopedia of New England.

Wilson, Donald A. Logging and Lumbering in Maine.


  1. Fantastic list, Marian! You may want to add:

    Sherman, MIchael, Gene Sessions and P. Jeffrey Potash, Freedom and Unity: A History of Vermont.

    Thanks for creating this list.

  2. Thank Cathi! I was hoping that people would continue to make suggestions in the comments. I'm glad to learn about that one.

  3. I have read parts of "Albion's Seed" dealing with New England. I have also read "The History Of King Philips War: Also Expeditions Against The French And Indians In The Eastern Parts Of New England In The Years ...." by Thomas Church and Samuel Drake. For information about the Dover, NH area, I have read "Hatevil Nutter of Dover, New Hampshire And His Descendants" by Frederick Boyle. For a more recent look at Boston, I recently obtained Twelve Walking Tours, Victorian Boston Today" edited by Mary M. Petronella and walked two of the tours (one followed streets that my sister travels daily and the other was in the area of my grandfather's home on Commonwealth Avenue).


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