Peace Dale Library

1057 Kingstown Road
South Kingstown, RI 02879

401-789-1555

History:

On October 9, 1891, Rowland Hazard and John Newbold Hazard gave to the town a living memorial "builded" in memory of their father Rowland Gibson Hazard. Designed by architect Frank W. Angell, the building is a massive Richardsonian Romanesque stone building with a hip-roof and large wood-shingled section at the rear with a louvered cupola. It has a large arched entry; a short conical tower at the right of the entry; a gabled section, with wood-shingled upper part left of the entrance; straight topped windows; several small gabled and eyebrow dormers; and two massive stone chimneys. In addition, there is a porte-cochere on the east side and a porch on the west side. The wood-shingled section was originally a large auditorium with a stage and was actively used in the early 20th century when the building was the center of village life. Above the former stage is a plaster frieze depicting musical activity, which is a reproduction of a work by Italian Renaissance sculptor Luca Della Robbia. The library originally occupied the large front room, which has a balcony that goes nearly around the room. This room as well as others is finished almost exclusively with cypress. Today the Hazard Memorial Building serves as the central library for the South Kingstown Public Library system. In November 1988, a major renovation to the building was undertaken and completed in March 1990. The renovation preserved the architectural integrity of the building and traditions of the past and incorporated them into providing a contemporary library facility for the entire community. A bronze sculpture, "The Weaver", by Daniel Chester French sits on the Library grounds. French's only work in Rhode Island, this 1920 piece was commissioned by Caroline Hazard in memory of her father and her two brothers.

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