On December 9, 1965, a nonprofit corporation was formed with the expressed purpose of preserving the extensive historical collections of Mrs. Eva Lutz Butler, a teacher, local historian and anthropologist. Our collections include manuscripts, out of print books, vintage maps and photographs, Indian artifacts, genealogical material and notebooks relating to the Southeastern New England Indian and Colonial period
After being hospitalized with a heart attack in April of 1965, Eva began to worry about the disposition of all her valuable source material which she spent decades compiling. A group led by Harry W. Nelson – poet, artist and retired teacher from Fitch High School in Groton, Conn. and Eva’s special friend Mary Virginia Goodman – also a retired teacher, historian and author; decided to take action to preserve her life’s work and make it available to the public
From the Town of Stonington, they obtained the unused 1856 brick building in the center of Old Mystic that originally housed the Mystic Bank and set to work creating the Indian and Colonial Research Center.
Eva’s extensive collection of research papers became the nucleus of the
I C R C collection and many decades of organizing and cataloging have
proven rewarding to both our volunteers and historical researchers.
The original officers of the corporation included : Harry Nelson, Mary Virginia Goodman, Phillip Perkins, Jessie Kohl and Carol Kimball. During the past 50 years, many fine people have served in various capacities on a volunteer basis to keep the doors open, add to and improve our resources and facilities, help and educate our patrons and even clean up after occasional floods. Most notable was Joan Cohn, who devoted 28 years to ICRC before retiring in 2015. Now we look forward to another 50 years and the new people that will come to join us as members and volunteers