2019 Exhibition & Program Series, 41.8219° N, 71.4171° W: “New Century, New Building: PPL Opens, 1900”

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As the 19th century drew to a close, Providence thrived as a manufacturing center, and immigrants seeking work fueled rapid population growth. PPL opened in 1878 in one rented room downtown; within a dozen years library trustees were drawing up plans for an aspirational and enduring building that would meet the needs of this booming city into the future. Join cultural historian Nancy Austin, Founding Principal 3sixØ Architecture/RISD Professor of Architecture Christopher Bardt, writer Taylor Polites, and RI Historical Society Deputy Executive Director for Collections and Interpretation Richard Ring for a conversation about how that building reflected the city’s cultural, economic, and geographical realities, and fit into the larger story of public libraries, at a time of great but precarious promise in Providence.

Free and open to the public; space is limited, reservations required at: https://provlib.libcal.com/event/5286828.