Known as the ARC, the Trustees Archives & Research Center in Sharon is the hub of our organization’s historical, curatorial, and institutional repositories.
The Trustees Archives & Research Center (ARC) cares for and curates Trustees’ history, providing researchers, Trustees staff, and the public access to thousands of historical documents, images, and artifacts. Our collection includes an ever-growing repository of research materials, from letters written during the Civil War to books inscribed by Ralph Waldo Emerson, from Trustees founder Charles Eliot’s scrapbook to ribbons for prize-winning pigs. The collections cover a range of contexts—from Colonial dairy practices to the China Trade to the origins of the land trust movement—revealing not just the history of our reservations and our role in the land trust movement, but the society and times in which they existed. Researchers are encouraged to review online property collection finding aids before scheduling an appointment.
On this property, the three existing buildings have ties to the former Sharon Sanatorium for Pulmonary Disease, which operated from 1891 until 1949. The largest is the ARC building, built in 1916, as the children’s pavilion of the Sharon Sanatorium, caring for youth afflicted with tuberculosis. The Kendall family purchased the property after the Sanatorium’s closing, and in 1956 opened the building as the Kendall Whaling Museum, which remained in operation until 2001 when its massive collection was merged with the New Bedford Whaling Museum.
The ARC opened in 2008 to safely store institutional history, Trustees governance records, property stewardship materials, as well as over 100 historical collections about the properties. There are 7,500 square feet of climate-controlled storage for archives and curatorial objects on the first floor, as well as 6,000 linear feet of high-density compact shelving.
A second building served as the Matrons’ Quarters for the sanatorium. Currently it is privately rented by The Trustees. And a third smaller, stone building, that was once the X-Ray Pavilion for the sanatorium, is now the Maps & Plans Center (MAPC). There are currently over 7,600 individually identified maps, plans, and aerials at MAPC.
Researchers are encouraged to email firstname.lastname@example.org any queries regarding the Trustees’ sizeable, and growing, repository. Selections from the ARC’s digital collections are available on our Collections page.
For more information about the Trustees’ wide variety of collections, including those open to the public at our historic houses, estates, and museums, visit our Collections page.
Note: the ARC property itself is not open for public visitation, and has no walking trails; the public may, however, make an appointment to perform specific research about a collection.
By appointment only.
Please call 781.784.8200 or email email@example.com to arrange your visit.
Please contact the ARC via email at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a research appointment. Upon confirmation, directions will be shared.
As reminder, all visitors must make an appointment before coming here.
The ARC property itself is not open for public visitation, and has no walking trails. The public may, however, make an appointment to perform specific research about a collection. Please email email@example.com regarding your query.
Our collections include some 50,000 objects, 95 cultural landscapes, 72 archaeological sites, seven “libraries” with more 6,000 books, and much more.
deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum and Fruitlands Museum provide dedicated exhibition venues in The Trustees' portfolio
The ARC building’s fascinating history began in 1916, as the children’s pavilion of the Sharon Sanatorium, caring for youth afflicted with tuberculosis. The Kendall family purchased the property after the Sanatorium’s closing, and in 1956 opened the building as the Kendall Whaling Museum, which remained in operation until 2001 when its massive collection was merged with the New Bedford Whaling Museum.
Joan Parker, Jane Bandini, and Maureen Pritzker of the Massachusetts Master Gardeners Association researching the gardens at Appleton Farms.
Rene Wendell (TTOR), Jonathan Pierce (Mass Audubon) and Thomas Tyning (Berkshire Community College) researching S. Waldo Bailey’s materials re: Bartholomew’s Cobble.
Alison Bassett (ARC Manager) and Sarah Hayes (Digital Archivist) review Charles Eliot’s scrapbook after it had been conserved by NEDCC.
ARC interior, stacks.
The Trustees Original Logo, 1891. The organization was known as The Trustees of Public Reservations until 1954.
"For the Purpose of Holding and Opening to the Public Beautiful and Historical Places in Massachusetts," August 1, 1892. From Charles Eliot's Scrapbook, conserved at the ARC.
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