Preservation and Restoration of Sandwich Town Hall

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

December 2010

 

The images above feature the recently restored Town Hall in Sandwich -- the oldest town on the Cape. Built in 1834 (for $4,138, according to town records), Sandwich Town Hall is one of the earliest Town Halls in the Commonwealth. Over $3 million in Community Preservation Funds aided in the restoration, and the project is a source of tremendous pride for town residents.

 

The building, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, has a well-documented and lively history. In the early 1900s, for instance, silent movies were shown for community viewing in the second floor Meeting Hall. The projectionist turned the film by a hand-crank, and movies were accompanied by local residents playing an upright piano.

 

The restoration took 15 months and was completed in October 2010. The historic preservation and restoration focused on retaining the historic, character-defining features of the Town Hall, and specifically on restoring:

      the linear first floor corridor and rear doorway

      the original Meeting Hall and 1870s stenciled ceiling

      1914 extension and stage

      historic exterior and original paint colors.

 

The upstairs Meeting Hall, originally the location for Sandwich Town Meeting, has been mostly vacant since the 1930s, when it became a storage room for records. It has now been completely restored and will once again serve as a community gathering spot for school performances, plays, movies, lectures, and other community activities. Other changes included updating the building to meet ADA and Building Code safety requirements, structural supports, and more.