47 College Street
William H. Gaylord, a much esteemed and civic-minded South Hadley
citizen, would be proud to see that the library he provided for town in
1904 still stands as a fitting memorial. The son of a farmer, Gaylord
rose to wealth and prominence through hard work and enterprise.
Recognizing the need for a public library in the town center, he
generously offered the money to build one on the site of the former
village cemetery, known as "God's Acre", on College Street. Across from
Mount Holyoke College's Mary Lyon Chapel, this cemetery had become
overgrown and was considered an eyesore.
Permission was given to move all of the graves to Evergreen Cemetery on
Hadley Street, except for the grave of John Preston, the original donor
of the land. The gravestone can still be found beneath a large spruce
tree behind the library.