Babcock-Smith House Museum
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Addition to Carriage House Announced
An addition to the Carriage House has been proposed that would add 1000 square feet to the main floor as well as basement space and a second floor loft. There will be a meeting/exhibit/activity room, a second larger archival vault, an additional rest room, a small reception desk area and much needed storage facilities. Ground-breaking should take place in the spring of 2014.
Several years ago, following the broad public success of our granite endeavors, trustees approved the concept of an addition which would meet three major current needs.
First, it would establish a place to house a permanent Westerly granite industry exhibit to share our granite-related collection which grew considerably after publication of Built from Stone: The Westerly Granite Story.
Second, it would expand the existing educational collaboration with local school districts. For example, our visiting fifth graders currently have to use office space, and activities have to be carefully choreographed at the time of their visits.
Third, it would provide a new "home" for the Westerly Historical Society as well as additional space for our growing local history and genealogy research library. Currently, the Westerly Historical Society houses its local history records in the basement of the Westerly Public Library and there are extremely limited facilities for researchers. At the celebration of its 100th anniversary held at the Westerly Armory, the Historical Society voted to donate $25,000 to the Building Campaign.
The addition is estimated to cost $300,000. During the "quiet phase" of the campaign, more than $180,000 has been raised from trustees, docents, and several generous individuals and businesses. In addition, the Board has made several requests for grants which are pending. We are anticipating that the general public will respond positively to help us reach our goal.
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In the news...
Docent Wanda Butler and Trustee Jacke Brennan attended a three day workshop on textile preservation. We look to Jackie and Wanda to bring knowledge and enthusiasm to our efforts. Is there an exhibit in the future?
Docents and Trustees have worked together on 40 Candlelight Dinners.
The Babcock-Smith House Museum won a prestigious national award for its Westerly Granite Project which involved the contributions of more than 100 community members and thirteen different organizations. The AASLH cited the “vigor, scholarship, and imagination” of the project which encompassed a year-long newspaper series, the book Built from Stone: The Westerly Granite Story, both in-house and traveling programs, and a curriculum for Westerly schools. In addition, a long-term loan from the Westerly Public Library and contributions of artifacts, photographs, and biographical information from community members have helped centralize and preserve Westerly’s granite heritage.
The Albert B. Corey Award is the highest award given to an all volunteer organization and is believed to be the first to be awarded to a Rhode Island group in the history of the American Association of State and Local History. The award with monetary prize was presented at the AASHL annual meeting in Salt Lake City in October.
Calling all local Holiday Ornament Collectors! The Babcock-Smith House Museum invites you to participate in our "Celebration of Trees," a new fundraiser for the Museum.
Artificial Christmas trees of various sizes, each decorated with a different theme, will be displayed in the historic rooms of our 1734 mansion and will be open to the pubic. Individuals, non-profits, and businesses are invited to decorate a tree with a theme that is meaningful in some way to the decorator. Themes may be as varied as a tree constructed from used books to a tree decorated with White House ornaments to a tree with kitchen implements. Be creative! Each tree will have a story to tell, and we will be happy to give your business or non-profit visibility throughout the exhibit.
The event will run from Saturday, December 8 through Sunday, December 15, 2013.
If you would like to participate in some way, whether it is lending ornaments and/or an artificial tree, decorating, etc., please contact us at WoodyHillbandb@verizon.net.
"Built from Stone: The Westerly Granite Story"
Although both the majestic and the humble products made from Westerly granite will be around for generations to come, the number of people who have an intimate knowledge of the granite industry are quickly diminishing and, with them, records and artifacts. This full color, hard-bound edition of is an attempt to share bits and pieces of the Westerly granite story so that the present generation can take pride in Westerlys granite heritage.
Books are $44.95 plus $7.00 shipping and handling or may be purchased at the museum or The Other Tiger Bookstore at 90 High Street in Westerly.
To Submit Granite Information, Anecdotes, or Artifacts:
Email: Ellen Madison, email@example.com
Become a Member
There are seven levels of membership with benefits at all levels.
All levels include: free admission to the Museum, newsletters, and a ten percent discount at Joshua's Store.
$2,500 Preservationist (Use of Carriage House for one day plus Candlelight Dinner for 12)
© 2009 Babcock-Smith House Museum