Browse Exhibits (3 total)
Local history books give credit for the industrial success of Chicopee to the men who established and invested in the various manufacturing companies in the city. Boston financiers were key to the development of Chicopee from an agricultural village into an industrial city with worldwide recognition as a manufacturing Mecca. Yet, the importance of the workers who made up the backbone of the industry’s workforce, especially the role of the female cotton factory workers is often overlooked. This section is meant to draw attention to The Factory Girls of Chicopee, Massachusetts in the early-mid 19th century.
The Library is currently displaying a 10 case exhibit commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg. The display focuses on Chicopee's substantial role in the Civil War as one of "Lincoln's Arsenals". The men and women of Chicopee contributed to the Union's cause both on the battlefield and in the factories. On display are numerous swords forged by the Ames Manufacturing Company, leather accoutrements made by the Gaylord Manufacturing Company, and various memorabilia from the Civil War era. The exhibit is the result of a collaboration between the Chicopee Historical Society and the Chicopee Public Library with the intention of educating our community about Chicopee's rich local history and its citizens important contributions to one of the most substantial wars ever fought in North America. The exhibit will be on display through September 18th. Please come by during the library's open hours for viewing.
The library recently acquired a set of 4 photograph postcards documenting the 1922 Willimansett flood in which two dams burst, releasing 20 million gallons of water into Willimansett. No lives were lost, but the damages were estimated at $500,000.