Sunday, February 20, 2011

Massachusetts Library Postcards

Of the 1700 total libraries in Massachusetts, there are 214 public library systems according to Wikipedia.  45 Carnegie Libraries were built according to NE Carnegies and 43 public, 5 academic according to Wikipedia.

Five library postcards in my collection are of Massachusetts libraries, two of them are Carnegies:
[Carnegie] Public Library, Leominster, Mass.
[unmailed, 1940 written in pencil on back side]

Leominster Public Library began in 1763 and had several temporary locations until the town voted to accept the gift of $27,500 from Andrew Carnegie in 1908.  The above building, designed by Hartwell, Richardson and Driver of Boston, was built in the Neo-Classical Revival Style and opened in 1910.

A 10,000 square foot, two-story addition was added to the rear and side in 1967.  In 2005, a renovation and expansion program began and was completed in 2007.  During that renovation the 1960s addition was demolished and a new addition was created, with a new entrance making the original building at the rear.  2009 pictures can be seen here.

Leominster "Pioneer Plastics City," settled in 1653 on the Nashua River, is located about 40 miles west of Boston and is known for its role in the plastics industry beginning in the late 1700s, peaking 1900-1920.

[Carnegie] The New Library, Springfield, Mass. 1912
[Mailed to Miss Harriett Rudman, Irondequoit NY from Mrs. G.A. Ashley, Springfield, postmarked 
Feb. 13, 1912.  Message: This is our new Carnegie Library that they have just moved into....)

Andrew Carnegie gave $260,000 to Springfield in 1905 for a central library and three branches according to the NE Carnegies website.  Pictured above, the Central Library was designed by Edward Lippincot Tilton, who specialized in the design of libraries (~100, many of them Carnegie) in the Italian Renaissance Revival Style.  This library was among the first to feature open shelving.  The steeple visible on the right is not part of the building.

The Springfield City Library was begun as the Springfield Library Company prior to 1796 and became a City Library in 1857.  A picture of the old library, built in 1871 is available here.   A 1998 grant enabled the restoration of the Rotunda.

Springfield, in south central part of the state on the Connecticut River, was settled in 1635 and was the first Springfield in the US, has several nicknames, including The Birthplace of Basketball.

Public Library, Boston, Mass. c1930
[Not a Carnegie, Mailed to HHUs from Catherine June 21, 2004]

Captioned: Designed after the style of the Italian Renaissance, the interior of the building is of great beauty and visitors come from all parts of the world to admire it.  Famous murals by Pierre Cecile Puvis de Chavannes, Edwin Austin Abbey, and John Singer Sargent will hold you spellbound.

Now known as the McKim Building, this building opened in Copley Square in 1895, designed by Charles Follen McKim.

I visited this library several times in the 1960-70s, the Court Yard being the most notable of my memories.

Public Library, Cambridge, Mass. [Not a Carnegie]
[Mailed to HHUs from Catherine July 29, 2004]

This historic building from 1888 is still part of the current library, part of a $90 million expansion and renovation completed in 2009.  A current picture can be found on the library's website.

Public Library, Lynn, Mass. [Not a Carnegie]
[mailed to Walter Morris, Livingston MT on April 2, 1941, message contains only name "Grace Smith."

A "Social Library" formed in Lynn in 1815 and became a free public library in 1862.  In 1893, Mrs. Elizabeth Shute gave a bequest to the city for a library building, pictured above, which opened in 1900.  According to the Library website, "George A. Moore, a nationally known architect, won the competition for the design of the building."

Although there were two Carnegie Libraries in Lynn, they were both built as branch libraries, Houghton Branch (vacant) and Haywood Branch (now Insurance/Realty office), both closed in the 1990s-early 2000s due to budget cuts and were sold.  One other branch was also sold and funds were to be used as seed money for the restoration and modernization of the main library.

Lynn was settled in 1629 and is an old industrial center about 7 miles north of Boston.

Carnegie Libraries in Massachusetts = 45
Catherine's collection = 2

Total blogged to date (ME and MA)
Carnegie Libraries = 66
Catherine's collection = 3

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