The Society's collection of microforms is housed together with several microform readers in the Nathaniel Cohen Microform Room, located off the reading room. Many of the microforms shelved there are series that were edited at AAS, including, on microfiche, the AAS-Readex Microprint Corporation's Early American Imprints 1639-1800: First Series (Evans), and Early American Imprints 1801-1819: Second Series (Shaw-Shoemaker). The two series taken together provide readers with access to most of the materials (excluding newspapers and periodicals) published in the United States before 1820, whether the original item is held by AAS or not. Cataloging records for the Evans and Shaw-Shoemaker series are available through RLIN and the Society's online catalog.
Other microform collections include the geographically organized AAS-Readex series Early American Newspapers 1704-1820, on microfilm and microcard; University Microfilms International's American Periodical Series 1741-1835 (APS), on microfilm; and Readex's Early American Periodical Index 1743-1850, on microcard. The non-Readex newspapers at AAS, arranged geographically and available on microfilm, include some Canadian and West Indian titles. The Society also possesses scattered microform titles of non-APS periodicals, arranged by title. These titles include Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, 1855-1922; Godey's Magazine, 1830-1878; and Harper's Weekly, 1857-1876. Available also is Research Publications, Inc.'s collection of American Directories, on microfiche, which includes all the directories published in the United States to 1880 and was based on Dorothea N. Spear's Bibliography of American Directories Through 1860 (Worcester, 1961). Jay Mack Holbrook's Massachusetts Vital Records, on microfiche, includes the vital records of Massachusetts towns.
Microfilm copies of a number of AAS manuscript collections are also shelved in the microform room. These include three substantial series based on AAS collections entitled New England Women and Their Families in the 18th and 19th Centuries: Personal Papers, Letters, and Diaries published by University Publications of America. Availability on microform is noted by a rubber stamp on the collection description forms housed in the reading room and in the manuscripts department.
Readers for all microform formats held by AAS are available in the microform room. Also available are reader-printers for making paper copies from microfilm and microfiche. Researchers may retrieve for themselves the items they need and can make their own copies for a nominal charge.
- Susan Motyka Anderson