Success and Renown
Around July of 1927, Roger served as the delineator for the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery and Memorial in Belleau, France, a memorial for American soldiers who fought in the area during World War I. He also designed a seal for the Historical Society of Cheshire County and developed architectural plans for a new library in the town of Surry, New Hampshire. Roger himself was a direct descendant of Surry’s first pioneer settler, Peter Hayward, and the town of Surry, about one hundered miles northwest of Boston, was the home of several generations of Roger’s ancestors. Plans for the library were drawn up and donated by Roger in 1929, and the Reed Free Library of Surry was opened to the public on January 21, 1933. Though Roger’s plans were scaled back slightly by the library’s building committee, the facility itself bears Roger’s original footprint and several of his planned features.
“Roger Hayward’s library is a symmetrical, three-bay building of one-and-a-half stories, built of red brick with a hipped roof of slate. The elevated central entrance is pierced by a Federal-style doorway with elliptical fanlight and three-quarter side lights. A red brick ell extends rearward toward Surry Mountain, with clerestory windows to accommodate bookshelves on the interior walls.” (The Civic Life of Surry, p. 135)
By the end of the 1920s, Roger’s exposure in the press had become more frequent and his acclaim more dramatic. In a Boston Traveler article titled “Young Boston Architect Jumps into Fame over Night as Painter,” his method of developing scenes from past remembrance and his own idealizations of the outdoors was noted favorably, and his exhibition was said to “Startle Critics.” However, though his fame was on the rise, at the urging of Sam Lunden, an old MIT classmate, Roger moved to California in the spring of 1929. Lunden, serving as a representative for the interests of the firm Cram & Ferguson on the West Coast, was awarded a $1,050,000 contract to design the Los Angeles Stock Exchange. Roger accepted the position of Chief Designer, Betty closed up her book shop, and the couple moved into a house at 365 South Wilson St. in Pasadena, California.