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The Boston Public Library

The Boston Public Library holds a lot of records, and I don't mean just books. It was the first publicly supported municipal library, as well as the first large library being open to the public. It was the first to use the borrow system for residents to take materials home to use, and it is the largest public library in the country. It also holds the third spot in the largest library by volume, underneath the Library of Congress and the Harvard Library system.

The system would never have...

The Boston Public Library holds a lot of records, and I don't mean just books. It was the first publicly supported municipal library, as well as the first large library being open to the public. It was the first to use the borrow system for residents to take materials home to use, and it is the largest public library in the country. It also holds the third spot in the largest library by volume, underneath the Library of Congress and the Harvard Library system.

The system would never have gotten off the ground if it weren't for a few key individuals. It was a man named Josiah Quincy Jr. that donated five-thousand dollars at the time to help establish the library. Perhaps even more interesting was a Frenchman who lived in Boston, by the name of Alexandre Vattemare, who traveled to all of the private libraries in the city, and successfully convinced them to unify all of their collections into one large library to benefit the public. At Alexandre's request, the French government made several donations of books to help urge the libraries to merge, once in 1843, and once more in 1847. Alexandre made his own donation in 1849. In 1852, Joshua Bates, made a donation of $50,000 dollars to help establish the library as well, a generous donation in any time, and especially then, when it was enough to officially establish city of Boston (and the country's) first major public library.

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Address:
700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02117
Directions:
Hours:
Monday - Thursday: 9am - 9pm; Friday & Saturday: 9am - 5pm; Sundays through May 18: 1-5pm
Admission:
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Travelgoaters at The Boston Public Library
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Cory Deist
April 14, 2010
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