The hippocampus is critical for encoding declarative memory, our repository of knowledge of who, what, where, and when 1 . Mnemonic information is processed in the hippocampus through several parallel routes involving distinct subregions. In the classic trisynaptic pathway, information proceeds from entorhinal cortex (EC) to dentate gyrus (DG) to CA3 and then to CA1, the main hippocampal output 2 . Genetic lesions of EC 3 and hippocampal DG 4 , CA3 5 , and CA1 6 regions have revealed their distinct functions in learning and memory. In contrast, little is known about the role of CA2, a relatively small area interposed between CA3 and CA1 that forms the nexus of a powerful disynaptic circuit linking EC input with CA1 output 7 . Here, we report a novel transgenic mouse line that enabled us to selectively examine the synaptic connections and behavioral role of the CA2 region in adult mice. Genetically targeted inactivation of CA2 pyramidal neurons caused a pronounced loss of social memory, the ability of an animal to remember a conspecific, with no change in sociability or several other hippocampal-dependent behaviors, including spatial and contextual memory. These behavioral and anatomical results thus reveal CA2 as a critical hub of sociocognitive memory processing.