Expansion and Renovation

The expansion of Antiquarian Hall includes a 7,000-square-foot addition housing a learning lab and conservation studio.

The renovation includes a complete replacement and reconfiguration of the building’s obsolete heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems, parts of which (pictured to the right) are more than 100 years old.

WHY NOW?

Each generation of AAS leaders has made judicious decisions about its future. Now in its third century, the Society’s current stewards are undertaking a major project to expand Antiquarian Hall and provide new infrastructure in order to preserve its historic collections.

As AAS holdings grow at an ever-increasing rate, the building project supports the Society’s mission to collect and preserve the printed history of early America. Further, it will allow the Society to share its resources more broadly with the public by offering an even wider array of symposia, lectures, workshops, seminars, and conferences on topics of American history and culture.

The Antiquarian Hall addition, designed by Samuel Anderson Architects, features a stunning three-story glass and copper façade on Park Avenue, one of Worcester’s busiest thoroughfares. This transparent portal will invite the public to know more about the Antiquarian Society.

Beyond the benefits of a stable, protected collection, the end results of this project will be substantial, long-term, and quantifiable. They will include, among other outcomes:

  • A tripling in the amount of conservation space in Antiquarian Hall.
  • A threefold increase in the possible number of interns engaged to conserve the collections.
  • 50% greater capacity for programs through expanded and more welcoming spaces on-site.
  • An exponential increase in online availability in workshops, classes, lectures, and demonstrations in the learning lab.


Skylight in the original 1910 construction is repaired


Early 20th century boiler


New HVAC system

The new copper-paneled façade

A Call to Action Conservation Studio Learning Lab

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