You might not have planned to visit a library while traveling but New York City has one that you don’t want to miss!
The New York City public library has about 50 locations throughout Manhattan but the one you’ll want to visit is the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building – familiarly known as the Main Branch.
The New York City Main Branch is the second largest library in the US (the first is the Library of Congress). It holds much more than just books. This library also has medieval manuscripts, rare books, baseball cards, comic books and more. There are more than 1200 languages and dialects represented in the library’s collections.
The building itself is amazing. It opened in 1911 and was, at the time of its opening, the largest marble building in US. The front entrance has two lion statues. In the 1930s, they were nicknamed “Patience” and “Fortitude”. If you’re facing the front of the building, Patience is on the left and Fortitude on the right.
There are lots of events and exhibitions at the Main Branch to enjoy- many of them free. Some current events and exhibitions include lectures on Shakespeare, classes on how to research all kinds of things, viewing valuable manuscripts like Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, and a multimedia display showing the history of the library’s collections.
New Your City’s main library is located on 5th Avenue and 42nd Street and is easily accessible by public transportation.
Monday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Tuesday and Wednesday: 10:00 am to 8:00 pm
Sunday: 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Fifth Avenue at 42nd Street, New York, NY 10018-2788
+1 (917) 275-6975