Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Public Library, Copley Square, Boston MA

Founded in 1848, by an act of the Great and General Court of Massachusetts, the Boston Public Library (BPL) was the first large free municipal library in the United States. The Boston Public Library's first building of its own was a former schoolhouse located on Mason Street that was opened to the public on March 20, 1854. The Library's collections approximated 16,000 volumes, and it was obvious from the day the doors were first opened that the quarters were inadequate. In December of that same year the Library's Commissioners were authorized to locate a new building upon a lot on Boylston Street. The present Copley Square location has been home to the Library since 1895, when architect Charles Follen McKim completed his "palace for the people." [LIB2656]

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