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Lenawee County Historical Society Museum (Adrian Public Library)

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Adrian Public Library
1907–1909, Paul O. Moratz. 110 E. Church St.

The Adrian Public Library was established in 1888 by the combined Ladies' Library Association and Central School and was housed in the city hall. When it owned over twenty thousand volumes, the library received an Andrew Carnegie grant and an appropriation from the City of Adrian that led to the construction of this Richardsonian Romanesque building. The library's board apparently ignored the preference for Beaux-Arts classical architecture then in vogue. Designed by Moratz of Bloomington, Illinois, who specialized in library design, the library was built by C. Fred Matthes of Adrian. The tan brick library, trimmed with red sandstone, juxtaposes a semicircular bay and an octagonal conical-roofed tower, intersecting shaped gables, and round-arched recessed entrances. The first-floor, Ionic-columned, semicircular rotunda contains the book delivery area and connects the east and north entrances to a semicircular reading room. A spacious, 125-seat auditorium is on the second floor. An oak leaf and acorn motif is carved in the sandstone of the entrance surround, the capitals of the piers supporting the entrance arch, and the oak newel post of the main interior staircase. The historical society museum moved into the building in 1979.

Writing Credits

Kathryn Bishop Eckert

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