Ashland Documentary Film & Discussion Series: Why Save Historic Buildings?

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The Ashland Documentary Film & Discussion Series will present the PBS film, The Rise & Fall of Penn Station (60 min), 7 to 9 p.m., on Tuesday, Sept. 22, at the Ashland Library, Community Room, 66 Front St., Ashland, Mass. The film is sponsored by the Friends of the Ashland Library and is shown in partnership with the Ashland Historical Commission.

The Documentary Film Series invites residents of Metrowest to participate in a discussion about the value and preservation of its buildings and its history.

Mighty Penn Station fell in 1963 because New Yorkers did not understand the importance of saving their own cultural identity, their own architectural history. The 60s were very much an “out with the old, in with the new” mentality. What mattered was chasing modernity and implementing efficiency. No one will miss that cavernous marble and granite, those carved angels, those columns. Wrong!

The savage destruction of their one-of-a-kind architectural palace slapped New Yorkers awake. They united to form the Landmarks Preservation Commission, which triggered cities and town all over the United State to cherish their own historic buildings and led to the creation of the National Historic Preservation Act.

Local historic preservation is just as important as national historic preservation. Saving local architecture helps us save ourselves. Understanding our own history, seeing the places where local history took place, connects us to the place we call home.

The Ashland Documentary Film & Discussion Series meets every 2nd Thursday and 4th Tuesday of the month for an in-depth look at important topics of our day. The moderated discussions are often lively and thought provoking. All points of view are welcomed. For more information, call the library, 508-881-0134, or visit