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(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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The Pratt "Village Room" stood on the common in Deerfield, Massachusetts, from 1896-1957. Its founders intended the Village Room to commemorate the life and public service of Martha G. Pratt (1830-1894) a Deerfield Postmistress. The building contained a community parlor with a room large enough to accommodate larger gatherings while corner seats and a fireplace fostered a more intimate, home-like atmosphere. The interest in education and public service among those using this space was evident from the beginning. The Village Room also hosted Church suppers, meetings of the Deerfield Women's Club, the Rural Improvement Club, the Saturday Club, the Sewing Society, and the Young Men's meeting. Its founders declared that the Village Room was created to serve the community and excluded "no class, sect, age, nationality or organization." The roster of users suggests, however, that it functioned as a white, Anglo-Saxon Protestant community center. Its limited clientele suggests that no one public space or institution could accommodate an increasingly diverse population.
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