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Thursday, June 2, 2016

“Let’s not be the ones who allowed the General Stanton Inn to disappear”

On June 6, Vote YES to save the General Stanton Inn
By Candy Adriance


Ms. Adriance has lived in Charlestown for 26 years, and is the widow of Robert Rohm, Chair of the Planning Commission from 2002-2008."

I am the president of the board of the Providence Athenaeum, a literary, cultural, educational and historic institution that has stood on the corners of Benefit and College Streets for the last 180 years.

Many of us have important institutions and buildings in our midst, but they tend to “disappear” into the landscape as we move though busy days.

It’s a natural inclination to take our surroundings for granted. I've found one of the best ways to focus people’s attention on the importance of The Athenaeum is to ask them how they'd feel if one day it weren't there.

We, the citizens of Charlestown, have a different but similarly iconic building in our midst, the 349-year-old General Stanton Inn.

Many of us pass by it at least once a week, on the way to the bank, the store, the post office.

Recently, because of the battle going on over the future of the General Stanton Inn, I've stopped taking for granted its place in the landscape and started asking myself:

What if one day it weren't here?

Rhode Islanders share a common pride in and dedication to preservation of our historic buildings.

Thoughtful preservation reflects in our citizens an awareness of the importance of our connection to the past, to our history and roots, to our humanity.

It acknowledges that we care, and it pushes against the inclination we so often have these days, to destroy or abandon what no longer seems relevant.

At a time when so much of our nation’s conversation and energies are driven by bottom lines, opportunity, pop culture, let’s accept responsibility for the General Stanton Inn.

Let’s show future generations that we had the intelligence not only to preserve our open spaces, but to protect our essential connections to our roots.

Let’s not be the ones who allowed the General Stanton Inn to disappear.