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In 2002, the Main Library Building of the Free Library of Philadelphia, now known as the Central Library, celebrates its 75th Anniversary. Information in the History portion of these pages documents the planning, design, construction, furnishing, operation, and use of the Central Library building as well as placing this important building in the context of the development of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway neighborhood. The pages are ordered chronologically. First imagined in the mid1890s, begun in earnest in 1910, and not completed for 17 years, the Central Library building is a triumph of civic architecture and library science as well as a monument to the fortitude, commitment, and aspirations of the librarians, trustees, local politicians, architects, and general public, who persevered during decades of tribulation including legal and political battles and a world war.


Telephone: 215-686-5322
Website: http://libwww.library.phila.gov/75th/

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