The nucleus of the Northeast Branch of the American Society for Microbiology was the Boston Bacteriology or "Bug" Club. In 1948, some of these men (women were excluded from the Bug Club) formed the Branch and became its first officers. The membership was then, and is now, drawn from the many hospitals, medical schools, colleges, universities, state and public health departments, and industry in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont which have active programs in the constantly developing science of microbiology. The Northeast Branch is represented on the Council of the American Society for Microbiology and draws support from it, but functions independently.
The Branch currently serves over 200 active members in Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire and Rhode Island, and has three affiliated student chapters at the University of Maine at Orono, ME, the University of New Hampshire at Durham, NH, and the Boston Area Student Chapter located in Boston.
Northeast Branch territory includes all zip codes in the states of Maine and Vermont; New Hampshire zip code areas 03000-03399, 03500-03599, and 03800-03899; and Massachusetts zip code areas 01700-02799.