Beginning in mid-March, several organizations in the Essex National Heritage Area took on the challenging but meaningful duty of collecting their communities responses to the coronavirus pandemic. Many communities have history & culture organizations that serve as repositories for local history, collecting a variety of archival materials including photographs, newspaper articles, journals, and other informative artifacts. 


“When the pandemic began to directly impact our local communities, Essex Heritage saw several organizations rise to the challenge of documenting history in real time,” said Annie C. Harris, Essex Heritage CEO. Essex Heritage annual photo contest even added a non-judged challenge category, Heritage at Home, for local photographers to capture their candid COVID-19 responses through images. 


“As we progress through this pandemic, we find comfort looking back in history to moments where our communities have overcome challenges and adversity. We are so blessed to be a part of a county rich in history & culture, but that is only possible because people who have come before us have chosen to document history. We can be those people today for future generations to utilize and appreciate. ”


Essex Heritage is encouraging all community members to participate in their local initiative. 


Below are several organizations in the heritage area that are collecting and archiving their community’s response to COVID-19.


Andover – Andover Center for History and Culture


Beverly – Historic Beverly


Lawrence – Lawrence History Center


Lynn  – Lynn Museum / LynnArts


Marblehead – Marblehead Museum


Nahant – Nahant Historical Society


North Andover – North Andover Historical Society


Topsfield – Topsfield Library


Salem – Salem State University Archives


If you do not see your community on the list but wish to share a story, image, or other artifact, please contact Essex Heritage to be directed to the appropriate organization.