Laying of the Beebe Library cornerstone, March 17, 1922

  • Laying of the Beebe Library cornerstone, March 17, 1922
  • "In 1916, the townspeople purchased a lot at the corner of Main and Avon Streets for $16,000. That same year, Junius Beebe, son of Lucius Beebe, donated $60,000 toward the construction of a new library building to be built in memory of his parents, Lucius and Sylenda. Construction on the building was delayed by World War I, and several modifications and land purchases were made before work began and the cornerstone was laid on March 17, 1922. Because building costs rose after the war, Junius Beebe and his family increased their donation to $200,000. The cornerstone was laid in a ceremony at 3 p.m. on a cold and raw Friday afternoon 'in the presence of several hundred people.' School children were dismissed early and church bells were rung throughout the Town as a reminder of the important event. During the ceremony, Building Committee member Harris M. Dolbeare outlined the contents of the copper box which was placed beneath the cornerstone: photographs of Lucius Beebe and Junius Beebe, copies of newspaper articles about the Beebe family, copies of the Boston newspapers and the Wakefield Item, circulars and printed materials regarding the campaign to raise money for the site, photographs of public buildings in Wakefield, and a statement written by committee member Dr. Richard Dutton and read to students the day before the event. Speakers included Committee members Dolbeare and Dutton, and Winfield S. Ripley, Jr., Chairman of the Library Trustees. Lucia Beebe, daughter of Junius Beebe and granddaughter of Lucius Beebe, smoothed over the cement that workers placed on the cornerstone using a silver dowel [i.e. trowel] provided by the contractor, James E. Nelson Company. The engraved dowel [i.e. trowel] was found in a basement on Daniel Road and donated to the library in 2009. The building was dedicated on April 15, 1923."
  • Image from the Wakefield Municipal Gas and Light Department annual calendar, 2017
  • Photo courtesy of the Wakefield Historical Society.
  • 03-17-1922
  • Wakefield, Mass. : Wakefield Municipal Gas & Light Department


“Laying of the Beebe Library cornerstone, March 17, 1922,” Lucius Beebe Memorial Library, Wakefield, Mass., accessed April 21, 2021,


Please let us know if you have any corrections, additional information or questions about this item.