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Greenfield Public Library Cornice fragment

(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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This cornice was removed from the Greenfield,Massachusetts, Public Library, during renovations in 1978. The library was originally housed in the town hall. Its expanding collections, including a Polish-language section, were increasingly crowded into these tight quarters. After significant debate, the town voted to purchase the house owned for many years by Dr. George Hovey and his wife, a property vacated by her death in 1906. The core of the house had been designed and built in 1798 by Asher Benjamin (1773?-1845), publisher of the first book of American architecture, for Judge Jonathan Leavitt. The building was renovated for the library with an eye toward restoring its original form. A bay window added onto the original structure was removed and the wings of the house were rebuilt. The building today is an example of the emerging Federal style of architecture.


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