Our collection of historic maps provides us with very different perspectives of early Newport, with each map influenced by the point of view of its creator. The map featured here, for example, is a military plan, drawn in August 1778 by Michel Capitaine du Chesnoy (1746-1804).
Eric Arthur Blair, known to readers as George Orwell, is widely known for his thought provoking titles such as Animal Farm, and 1984. Who was George Orwell, and what inspired him to write the stories that have inspired thought and questioning for many generations? This Reading List will sample some of Orwell's books, his personal writings, and provide an in-depth look into the life of the sometimes controversial author. Also, the writings and history of some contemporaries of George Orwell will be available to stimulate the mind as we peer into the world of dystopian stories.
Landscaping at the Redwood has been a process through several periods of war, recession, and renewal in Newport, culminating in the large landscaping project that began in 1934 and remains part of our grounds today.
On Saturday, June 10, The Redwood Library with host our Fourth Annual History Seminar titled Colonial Classics: The Redwood Library & American Architecture in the 18th Century. This year will see experts in colonial architecture discuss a wide range of topics that will include the Redwood Library as ‘Temple of the American Enlightenment,’ the anxiety of influence in Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, Giambattista Piranesi’s heroic vision of ancient Rome as an inspiration for American architecture, and the contingent influences of British public architecture on the built environment of colonial American cities. Even if you are unable to attend the event be sure to come into the Redwood and check out some of the fantastic works on architecture and preservation below on our display table and in the Pell-Chafee Architecture collection.
Some collections span across several generations of one family; such is the case with the Turner Family Papers. The oldest item in the collection dates back to 1797 and the last item is from 1846, marking the lives of many different Turners who were connected by their family ties, although just a fraction of them lived in Newport, Rhode Island.
In May of 1915, the acclaimed novelist Edith Wharton (1862-1937) was in Nancy, France, in the northeastern part of the country. After a year of war, its effects were visible on the homes and lives of the people of France who were attempting to continue through the destruction. On May 13, 1915, Wharton began writing her observations of Nancy, which were later published along with her other wartime observances in Fighting France: From Dunkerque to Belfort (1915).
This past week, Rhode Island celebrated its own “Independence Day” on the anniversary of when Rhode Island became the first colony to renounce its allegiance to the King of England on May 4, 1776 so today we explore the history of the celebration of these events in Rhode Island and what exactly this meant in terms of Rhode Island Independence.
We are all familiar with the old rhyme, "April Showers bring May flowers", and after this rainy and depressing April we all are looking forward to the brightly colored May flowers. Most of us have had at one point, or still do have a garden of some sort. Whether it be flowers or vegetibles, we put in the backbreaking effort to till and weed and propogate. Looking for some new ideas for a summer garden? Come in to the Redwood Library and check out our extensive collection of gardening books located in our Pell-Chafee preservation room, some of which are listed here.
After the Revolutionary War, Robert Rogers (1758-1835) became a proprietor of the Redwood Library and began a commitment to the company that he would honor throughout his life. He dedicated much of his time to serving the Redwood, and the greater Newport community.