History

The MSPCA: One of the nation’s oldest voices for animals

George Thorndike Angell

George Thorndike Angell

One of the first humane organizations in America, founded shortly after the Civil War, the MSPCA-Angell has seen vast changes in society, the environment, and the roles of animals in our lives. It has helped make laws and set standards that have fundamentally shaped our sense of kindness and care for animals – and for one another.

Today, the MSPCA-Angell continues to rescue, shelter, protect, heal, and advocate for more animals than any other American humane organization, giving hands-on care to many thousands of animals each year. We also provide emergency assistance and strategic-planning help for animal-protection groups across the country and around the globe. Through our legislative work, humane-education efforts, and community-based assistance initiatives, we help create lasting change for animals and people.

George Thorndike Angell

One of the brightest torchbearers of the early humane movement was George Thorndike Angell.

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Historical Timeline

We’ve come a long way. From 1868 to the present day, here are the major events in the history of the MSPCA.

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Archive Project

The Archives are an irreplaceable source of information about the history of the humane movement, the city of Boston, the state of Massachusetts, and society at large.

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Be Kind Exhibit

The MSPCA’s Archive collection contains unique, one-of-a-kind publications, letters, and artifacts that chronicle the history of advocating for animals. We are pleased that numerous items from the collection are exhibited in the National Museum of Animals and Society.

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