Omohundro Institute of Early American History & Culture

Leading Early American Scholarship Since 1943


Doing History

What is the history of the American Revolution? The answer is not simple.

While season 1 looked at how historians work, the mission of season 2, Doing History: To the Revolution, is to ask how different historians interpret the events and people at the center of the American Revolution and to help listeners see the connections—and possible disconnects—between the different approaches.

play pause

Episode 75: Peter Drummey, How Archives Work

Historians research history in archives.

But how do you gain access to one? And how do you use an archive once you find that it likely contains the information you seek?

In this third episode of our “Doing History: How Historians Work” series, we investigate how archives work with Peter Drummey, an archivist and the Stephen T. Riley Librarian at the Massachusetts Historical Society.

Episodes and supplemental content available on

Supporting this series helps to meet one of the chief aims of the Lapidus Initiative: to make more transparent the intensive and collaborative processes of developing and producing high-quality scholarship. It also offers us a new and exciting opportunity for public outreach.