Menu toggle
Five of the Most Amazing Public Libraries in the United States

Five of the Most Amazing Public Libraries in the United States

The United States is filled with all kinds of wonders, both natural and man-made, making it an intriguing place to explore as a resident and, of course, a huge draw for tourists. If you are currently a student enrolled in an online masters in library science and you’re looking for a way to help your studies come to life, then you may want to consider exploring what the country has to offer in terms of public libraries.

The United States just so happens to be home to a number of stunning and historic public libraries that are just waiting for you to discover. So, why not take what you’re learning in that online MMLIS program and add to your appreciation of the field by visiting these top five U.S.-based libraries.

New York Public Library, New York City, NY

When it comes to iconic public libraries, the New York Public Library is pretty much top of the list. This one is located on Fifth Avenue and 42nd street in Manhattan and was founded in 1895. At that time, New York was growing very quickly, so the city needed a place to store its rather large collection of historical and current material.
Today the library serves more than 17 million people each year, and has such prized items as the 1493 letter from Columbus, which announced his discovery of the New World, the handwritten score of "Lover Man" by John Coltrane, and the original farewell address by George Washington.

The Boston Public Library, Boston, MA

If you're in search of the very first free public library in the entire United States, then look no further than The Boston Public Library in Boston, MA. The library opened its doors in 1845 and housed 16,000 volumes of work. Almost right away it became clear the library wouldn't be large enough, so in 1972 an addition was built by the famous architect Philip Johnson. Built in the American Beaux-Arts Classicism style, this library is a marvel to see in person.

Geisel Library, UC San Diego, La Jolla, CA

Unlike some of the other libraries on this list, The Geisel Library on the University of California San Diego campus is extremely modern in design. It is classed as brutalist architecture and is incredibly striking. The 20th century aesthetic continues through the interior of the building, with a focus on light and mass.

Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Yale University, New Haven, CT

What makes the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library so special is the content it houses. This is where you'll find all the rare literary manuscripts and principal rare books. The library is the main research point for Yale students, scholars, and faculty since it is on the Yale campus. The library is able to house more than 180,000 volumes in the central tower, and then underground there is room for over a million volumes. This makes the library one of the largest holders of rare books in the entire world.

George Peabody Library, The John Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD

If you're looking for an architectural experience, then the George Peabody Library at The John Hopkins University will leave you speechless. The library opened its doors in 1878 and was part of the Peabody Institute. It now houses more than 300,000 works and draws in people from around the world.

Do you have any more suggestions for fine libraries? 

Share this article:

Subscribe to newsletter


Subscribe to our newsletter

Sign up here and get the latest news and updates delivered directly to your inbox

You can unsubscribe at any time