1953: Improving Old Town Hall for the Future

In 1953 the Historical Society of Delaware looked to improve the conditions of Old Town Hall for their future needs. The Society looked to repair the facility, enhance the library space, and provide better conditions for researchers in the facility. The Society wanted to bring library “in line with what is now done in other libraries.” 1953 was a year of improvement.

2nd floor view of Old Town Hall, 1955

The committee purchased new furniture for the employees and other items for the library. For the first time in history of the Society the librarian and the assistant editor each had their own desk. The Society also invested in a new typewriter, a wooden reading stand designed to support large volumes of newspapers, and small table book racks. New coat racks were also purchased for the library (and also to be used for the annual meeting). Likewise, new desk lamps were purchased for the record room, after determining that overhead fluorescent lighting was too expensive. Improvements extended outside of the library. Old Town Hall received a minor facelift. The cupola was repaired, the gates and steps were fixed, and the outside woodwork was painted in 1953.

The repairs and maintenance of the property and new furniture was costly. The Historical Society of Delaware spent nearly $4,000 in 1952 on library equipment and supplies and on repairs maintenance of property. These necessary expenses, however, insured the modernization of the Society in the mid 20th century.


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