Tagged special collections

Corridor of Culture: 100 Years of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway

In the autumn of 2016, we were tasked with a fascinating challenge: create a bold and welcoming exhibition that would discuss the history of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. On the surface, this isn’t that difficult. As curators in…

The Art of Comics: An Exhibition

The Free Library has recently mounted an exhibit of treasures from our collections that illustrate the history and artistry of the comic book medium. This display can still be seen on the 2 nd- floor landing and the Art Department…

A Rare Glimpse of Philadelphia in the Early 1800s

The Free Library’s map collection comprises thousands of maps focused on the development and history of Philadelphia and Pennsylvania. One particular map, the Plan of the City of Philadelphia and Environs, 1809, surveyed by John…

Traveling Treasures: A Special Collection Worth Touching

Much has been written in academic journals about the need to increase access to special collections in public libraries, museums, and universities. This topic is particularly relevant to the  Rare Book Department of the Free…

"Pay to Benjamin Franklin, for Printing"

We all know Benjamin Franklin, Philadelphia's everyman. Poor Richard . Diplomat of the Revolution . Inventor of the Glass Harmonica . Postmaster General . Guy Who Flew A Kite in a Thunderstorm. Founder of the University of…

Philadelphia, Fleisher, and the City Beautiful Movement

June 2, 2017, will mark the 90th birthday of our Parkway Central Library . On September 8, 2017, celebrations for the Benjamin Franklin Parkway’s 100th anniversary will begin and continue until November 16, 2018. The Free Library…

Grandfather's Papers: The Jacques Wissler Collection

The Print and Picture Collection (PIX) in Parkway Central Library is home to diverse collections of fine art prints, photographs, drawings, and artists’ books, as well as extensive research collections of Philadelphia images, both…

The Art of Katherine Milhous

Katherine Milhous (1894-1977) wore many hats in her time: a supervisor for the Federal Art Project ; an artist for the Pennsylvania Art Project (a subsidiary of the Federal Art Project, which itself was formed under the…

Corridor of Culture: 100 Years of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway

Between September 2017 and November 2018, all of Philadelphia will be celebrating the centennial of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Since 1917, this grand avenue has connected Philadelphia’s City Hall with the entrance to Fairmount…

Big and Small, Books for All

Big and Small, Books for All From October 23, 2017 to March 24, 2018 This family-oriented exhibition features extraordinary books selected for their extreme sizes and unusual shapes. Visitors of all ages can interact with special…

Bernstein the Conductor

The Free Library of Philadelphia and the Edwin A. Fleisher Collection of Orchestral Music are pleased to be a part of the global celebration BERNSTEIN AT 100. Kicking off August 25, 2017 and ending August 25, 2019, the Bernstein…

From Proposal to Project: Philadelphia’s Parkway, 1884–1937

Highlighting materials from the Library’s Map Collection, this exhibition delves into the complicated history of the Parkway’s initial proposal, its iterations of building plans, and its triumphant renaming. Learn about the…

Animals in the Archives

Join Archives Month Philly  for an evening filled with activities, prizes, fantastic beasts, and more – all based on animals from the archives! More than a dozen local archival institutions will be joining the Special…

PAWS at the Library

Philadelphia is celebrating American Archives Month by featuring  Animals in the Archives.   As part of this celebration, the Special Collections Division of the Free Library of Philadelphia welcomes PAWS to Parkway…