James O'Toole

James M. O'Toole, University Historian

Representative Publications

The Faithful: A History of Catholics in America (2008)

Boston's Histories: Essays in Honor of Thomas H. O'Connor, co-edited with David Quigley (2004)

Passing for White: Race, Religion, and the Healy Family, 1820-1920 (2002)

Militant and Triumphant: William Henry O'Connell and the Catholic Church in Boston, 1859-1944 (1992)

Understanding Archives and Manuscripts (1990)


  • A.B., Boston College
  • A.M., College of William and Mary
  • M.S., Simmons College
  • Ph.D., Boston College

For BC Students and Alumni:

Students at Boston College and BC Alumni make frequent use of the Office of the University Historian. Students conducting research projects dealing with various aspects of BC's history visit the office for information and consult with the University Historian for further suggestions and directions. Alumni contact the office with questions about their time as students at Boston College and occasionally offer documents and memorabilia relating to the history of the University. The office cooperates with the University Archivist in the appropriate disposition of such historical materials.


For Local and National Media Outlets:

The Office of the University Historian is also a direct source of information for both local and national media outlets — newspapers, radio, and television — concerning historical aspects of Boston College. In cases where the requisite information is not available in this office, inquiries can be directed to such other university agencies as the John J. Burns Library, the Office of Student Affairs, or the Athletic Association. Sometimes, members of the media are directed to the University Historian by the Office of University Communications; at other times the media contacts this office directly. In either case, the Historian serves as the spokesperson for the University in terms of the historical record.