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Taylor M. Polites

My Work in Providence and Rhode Island History

History has always been a touchstone for me. I have been so privileged to be able to find ways to share the stories of Providence's amazing past and connect with people in the community. Check out some of my work below and let me know what you think.

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West Side Walking Tour

The Rhode Island Council for the Humanities asked me to develop a tour of important sites in Providence's Federal Hill and West End. Through my research, the obvious focus of the tour became two important themes in Providence's history, activism and immigration. Please follow the link below to visit the tour.

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History of the Wedding Cake House

The Kendrick-Prentice-Tirrocchi house, also known as the Wedding Cake House, was purchased by the Dirt Palace, a feminist art collective supporting emerging artists from underrepresented communities. The renovation is aimed at restoring the house and making it a self-sustaining B&B and artist residency program. I was honored to be asked to give a talk about the history of the house by the Providence Preservation Society. Please find the link to the video of this talk below. Image courtesy of the Rhode Island Collection, Providence Public Library.

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The Cathedral Square of Yesteryear

This historic booklet considers the history of one of Providence's great urban spaces, today's little used Cathedral Square. Learn about the origins of the square to its heyday as an elite address and then a commercial and entertainment venue, and ultimately its decline with the economic fortunes of the city. This booklet was possible through a grant from the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities. Image courtesy of the Rhode Island Collection, Providence Public Library.

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The Providence Armory

This booklet uses newspaper articles to tell the story of the Cranston Street Armory (also known as the Providence Armory). The first version was in collaboration with the Providence Public Library and their Occasional Nuggets series. This version was sent to every state legislator and members of the executive branch as well as community advocates to raise awareness of this important historic structure. The second version, the first in the Monuments of Providence series, was expanded to include additional stories and images. Please use the link below to see the pdf.