About the Museum of Springfield History
The creation of a new Museum of Springfield History has been a long-term goal of the Springfield Museums. In 2005, just two months before his death at the age of 102, M. Allen Swift of West Hartford, Ct., donated $1 million for the purchase of the former Verizon office building adjacent to the Springfield Museums campus to create the new museum. Mr. Swift also donated his single-owner, Springfield-made Rolls-Royce for display in the museum.
Additional funding to complete the museum was raised through a combination of public and private sources, including city, state and federal grants, charitable foundations, corporate contributions, and private donations.
The 40,000-square-foot museum presents exhibits that interpret Springfield history in the larger context of American history in the 19th and 20th centuries. As a prosperous city growing out of the Industrial Revolution, Springfield reflects historical trends experienced by the United States as a whole.
Additional features of the museum include the Springfield History Library and Archives which contains 2.5 million manuscripts, 50,000 photographs, 30,000 books, thousands of reels of microfilm, and computer databases for researchers and family genealogists; and the Springfield History Theater, which shows historical documentaries and presents educational programs.
The museum interprets Springfield history in the larger context of American history in the 19th and 20th centuries.