These seals are used to authenticate official documents and all of them include the name of the city or town and the year it was incorporated. The majority also have, in the center space, a picture related to the city or town’s beginnings. A useful reference for understanding the significance of the depictions used for these seals is Town and City Seals of Massachusetts (State Street Trust Company, 1950-1951) which is available in the State Library.
This is a selection of seals used in Massachusetts since the 1600’s. Find the remainder of the collection at the State Library's Special Collections Department.
Kate Boutin, Special Collections Intern