Created with input from users like you, the Free Library's website is designed to be functional and easy to navigate. You'll notice that the homepage is divided into three main color-coded sections: Find (blue), Explore (green) and Ask (orange). A horizontal gray bar provides additional information about the Library. You can find each of these colored sections on every page of the website.
This guide takes a close look at each section's main features. If you need quick help, try our Frequently Asked Questions.
There is a convenient search box at the top of every page. This feature allows you to enter a word or phrase and find information from many Library sources.
You can also search our catalog exclusively by clicking the Catalog link below the search box on our homepage.
The Find search box searches the resources listed below and organizes the results under two tabs:
Using our Google-powered site search, you can locate almost any of the information available on the Free Library's website. It works the same way a familiar Google search works. In this case, the search is confined to Free Library pages. This does not include the catalog or our subscription databases.
Just click the Site Search link below the search box. The results will be a list of Free Library pages that contain your terms. Site Search can find a variety of information, from Library hours to events and collections, and everything in between.
Site Search includes:
The green Explore section consists of selected Free Library resources on popular topics.
When you have questions, the orange Ask a Librarian section offers several ways to interact with our librarians:
Of course, you can always call us at 215-686-5322 or e-mail us directly.
At the top of each page, you'll notice a horizontal gray bar divided into sections. These sections contain information about the many facets of the Free Library.
Locate information about all of our libraries by clicking Locations in the gray bar on any page. There are several ways to find the location nearest to you. You can search by keyword, enter your zip code, look at a map, or find the library name in a list. You'll find maps, directions, hours, events, and even the histories of our libraries.
Browse the Free Library's many events on our calendar page. Events are listed by location, date, and type.
Programs & Services
This section lists descriptions and contact information for the Free Library's many offerings. Programs & Services can be sorted by categories: Children, Teens, Adults, and Families.
About the Library
The About the Library section is the place to learn about everything from our special collections to job opportunities at the Free Library.
Support the Library
There are a number of ways to support the Free Library of Philadelphia. You can offer a financial gift or spend some time volunteering with us.
Written by Free Library staff, our blog is full of in-depth information, commentary, and discussion of our programs, services, resources, events, and catalog offerings; as well as topics such as literature, art, music, history, poetry, pop culture, and everything in between.
A Free Library card is available at no cost to anyone who lives, works, pays taxes, or goes to school in the City of Philadelphia. In addition, anyone who lives in the state of Pennsylvania can obtain a Free Library card without charge. Out-of-state residents can obtain a card by paying an annual fee of $50.00.
If you're 18 or older, you can get a new Library card by clicking sign up now, which you can find near the top of every Free Library page. Cards should arrive in the mail in 5 – 10 business days. Keep in mind that you'll need to show ID the first time you use your card.
The Free Library of Philadelphia respects your privacy. We collect no private, personal information unless you voluntarily supply it. For more information, please read our Privacy Statement.
The Free Library's RSS feeds provide automatic updates on selected Library lectures and events.
We welcome you to write us with your questions and comments about the Free Library website. Please include your email address if you would like a reply. We try to respond to all queries within a few days.