I wouldn’t say that it’s an easy task restoring the trim on a historic building dating back to the end of the 19th century. Patience and know-how are required, and it probably goes without saying that it also involves a significant investment in time. In this case the building to which I am referring is the Richards Free Library in Newport. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The Richards Free Library on the National Register of Historic Places
Located on Main Street in Newport, New Hampshire, the Seth Mason Richards Building was built as a home for, naturally, Seth Mason Richards in 1899. The Richards family was one of the wealthiest in town and apparently also quite altruistic, with the original library being founded by Dexter Richards in 1888.
In 1962, Dexter’s granddaughter, Louise Richards Rollins, donated the residence to be used as the Richards Free Library. Prior to that date the Richards Free Library was located in a different building in Newport that has since been replaced with a newer structure.
You may have noticed us working on the building this summer. While the siding is vinyl, all of the white trim was badly in need of restoration. Take a look the next time you visit, or make a special trip to visit even if the Richards Free Library isn’t your local library. Then go visit your library. While library services have changed over the years, they still offer many valuable resources and activities.
Earlier this season children’s librarian, Moriah Churchill-Calkins (Ms. Mo), was married at the library, taking advantage of its historic charm. Here are a few pictures that she shared, with credit to photographer Cheryl Barker.
I think I’m still working my list from 2017, or maybe even 2016, but if you’re still looking for some summer reading you might start here.