Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Libraries That Are Architectural Wonders

Matador contributing editor Sarah Park has “curated” two galleries of fascinating libraries around the world. These links will take you to some interesting buildings dedicated to the written word.

tempest at dawn
Boston Public Library

I’ve used the Boston Public Library to illustrate this post because I spent untold hours in this room. Actually, I found my greatest treasure in the basement of this building. I was researching Tempest at Dawn and discovered Christopher Collier’s doctoral thesis on Roger Sherman. Collier is the coauthor of Decision in Philadelphia, among other books. I was able to speak to him on the phone, and he had no idea that his thesis had been preserved on microfiche or that it was retained by the Boston Public Library. Since information on Sherman was relatively rare, it was fortuitous to find this academic profile about the architect of the Great Compromise at the Constitutional Convention.

Since I’m writing about my time in Massachusetts, there were two other libraries that had an impact on my writing— the Concord Free Public Library and the Boston Athenæum. One is public and home to great literary traditions and the other is one of the oldest private libraries and cultural institutions in the country. I suggest Sarah Park do a third gallery of libraries dedicated to unique institutions in the United States.

Tempest at Dawn
Boston  Athenæum
Tempest at Dawn
Concord Free Public Library

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