Redwood Journal

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     On August 31, John Tschirch returns for the second part of his four part lecture series “The Great English House”.  His second talk “Baroque Drama: Castle Howard” will focus on the country estate of the Earls of Carlisle designed by Sir John Vanbrugh in the culmination of the English Baroque style. Begun in 1699, construction would take a little more than a century finally being completed around 1811.

 

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   Between 1454 and 1455, Johannes Gutenberg would complete a total of approximately 180 copies of his 42-line Bible that would come to bear his name today. The Gutenberg Bible would be the first example of mass produced moveable type in the Western World and would usher in the age of printed books into Europe. Since its publication there are about 49 copies, some incomplete, that are still in existence and even though none have been sold since the 1970’s it is still considered one of the most valuable books in the world.

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    Quite often here at the Redwood Library we stumble across an artifact in our vault that really knocks our socks off. Today we offer a letter written by Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson on behalf of President George Washington. It is a letter informing one William Channing Esq. that he has been appointed by the President as the First U. S. Attorney of the State of Rhode Island under the newly ratified Constitution of the United States.

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 An Engraving of King Philip by Paul Revere, illustration from the 1772 edition of Benjamin Church's The Entertaining History of King Philip's War

     

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     Starting  on Wednesday August 24, award winning architectural historian John Tschirch will begin his lecture series titled “The Great English House”. The series visits four remarkable homes famed for their design, collections, and legendary occupants. Each house is a time capsule of English history beginning with the Elizabethan Era.

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Between 1620 and 1636 colonists from England began settling the land of what would become the states of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut.  History books tell tales of these brave men and women coming to the New World with nothing more than their religious zeal or a sense of new business ventures. Their goal was to make a better life for themselves and their descendants and in that regard most were successful.

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The Redwood has been home to many readers, one of our most famous is poet Emma Lazaruz (1849-1887). The Lazarus family had a summer home here in Newport, "The Beeches" at 647 Bellevue Avenue. However, her family ties to Newport go much further, her great-great grandmother on her mother’s side, Grace Seixas Nathan, was the sister of famed Touro Synagogue leader,Seixas (known for his correspondence with Gen. Washington).  

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Did you know that the Redwood Library has not one, but two letters signed by Thomas Jefferson? Click here to read more.

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To celebrate our upcoming holiday weekend, and in order to reflect on the meaning and cost of American independence, we have chosen to feature some stanzas from “A Poem, on the Fourth of July, 1798” by John Miller Russell. Click here to read more.

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