Rhode Island College's Yellow Cottage Ribbon-Cutting

A ribbon-cutting ceremony held on Monday honored the rebuilding of the Nineteenth Century structure and the dedication of the Richard Hillman Garden.


There are many historic buildings in Rhode Island that are being preserved and renovated to reflect the purpose they once had. The Yellow Cottage at Rhode Island College (RIC) is one of those buildings, and it has taken nearly a decade to complete.  A ribbon-cutting ceremony held on Monday honored the rebuilding of the Nineteenth Century structure and the dedication of the Richard Hillman Garden.

Built around 1885, the Yellow Cottage originally served as a dormitory for the State Home and School for Dependent and Neglected Children and it is the last original building of that complex. Thanks to local businesses across the state, the Yellow Cottage has been converted into a space with large classrooms, two conference rooms, an office and a museum featuring public exhibits of photos, documents and other memorabilia from the years it served as an orphanage.

The Yellow Cottage is a modern-day transformation that still holds onto its past history. The interior renovations, completed pro-bono by the Gilbane Building Company and other volunteers, link the past to the present and the future. The original staircase still stands with tiny steps that were once better suited to children. Most of the memorabilia on display are toys that belonged to the children in the orphanage, including marbles, toy trucks and a horseshoe. There’s also an original wooden cubby built by the children.

The new classrooms feature brand new televisions and historic memorabilia found around the site. “This new facility for the community preserves and embodies history,” says RIC President Nancy Carriuolo. Watch our video tour of the Yellow Cottage.


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