Richards Memorial Library
On August 26, 1893, the North Attleborough Board of Selectmen received a letter from Mrs. Anna L. Tweedy, Miss Harriet T. Richards and Mr. E Ira Richards offering the town land at the corner of Washington and Grove Streets "with the intention of placing thereon a stone building to be used as a public library forever, and as a memorial to our parents." On September 6, 1893, the town voted unanimously to accept the gift at a special town meeting.
The cornerstone was laid on June 16, 1894 and was inscribed to the memory of Edmund Ira Richards and Lucy M. Richards. A large group of state and local dignitaries attended the dedication, along with the public. The exterior of the library is in the Renaissance style, with the roof in the French style with two dormers. The details of the building are in the Italian style. The front oak door is original and still welcomes patrons today. The building, furnishings and landscaping cost $25,000 (an impressive sum in 1894 dollars), with the entire cost being paid for by the Richards family.
In 1929, at a cost of $30,000, an addition was built on the rear of the library which became the library's first children's room. In 1977, a "Friends of the Library" group was founded. Over the years the Friends have provided special services and have always championed the library's need for an adequate budget.
In the fall of 1990, the library expanded its lower level. Space became available for an auditorium meeting room, a staff room and a kitchen, along with an art display area and a technical service office. The total cost of the renovation was $750,000. With the advent of computer technology, the Richards Memorial Library was prepared for the challenges of the 21st century, while still maintaining the service that had been a hallmark of the facility since 1894.