For months people entering and departing the Library had noticed ever widening gaps between the fourteen foot long granite steps. Through a series of consultations the LibraryTrustees have learned that the steps are resting on brick-and-mortar supports on either end, with no support in the middle of the steps. The mortar in those supports is failing, leading to slipping bricks and therefore sliding granite. Repair is necessary!
To protect the public and the building we need to keep water, winter and weight off the granite until the steps can be repaired in 2018. Recognition of this led to the design and creation of the current temporary stairs and the structural covering of the historical steps. Leading the “Stairway to Heaven” team, and providing tens of hours of volunteer effort in designing and building the current access to the Library, has been Bob McGuire. Michael Jasmin, Joel McCarty, Chris McGuire , Anthony James, Mikey Gordon and Jayden Silva donated much time, talent and energy to the effort. Chris Hansen donated some materials. Michael Jasmin prepared the detailed Request for Proposals for the work to be done. The Library Trustees have provided oversight throughout the process.
The Library Trustees will be working with the Board of Selectmen to create a warrant article for the repair of the granite steps; this warrant article will come before the Town Meeting in 2018. The anticipated schedule, pending passage of the warrant article, is that the steps will be repaired by mid-June, 2018. It is critically important to the Library Trustees that the quality of work is commensurate with the quality of a building on the National Register of Historic Buildings.
The steps repair will be on the agenda of the Library Trustees on Thursday, November 9 (meeting begins at 6 pm) and on the agenda of the Board of Selectmen November 14 (meeting begins at 6:30 pm.) These meetings are always open to the public.
The Shedd-Porter Memorial Library was built in 1910 as a gift from John Graves Shedd and Mary Roenna Porter and was given in memory of their families to the citizens of Alstead and Langdon. Constructed in 1910, it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.