Kingsessing Library

Services and hours are subject to change — please call in advance. Before you visit, please review our new COVID-19 guidelines.

1201 South 51st Street
Philadelphia, PA 19143-4353
5lst St. between Kingsessing and Chester Avenues
Open today until 6:00 p.m.
Sunday Closed
Monday 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Tuesday 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Wednesday 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Thursday 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Friday 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Saturday Closed

Upcoming Closures

  • Thu., Nov. 11 : Closed Veterans Day
  • Thu., Nov. 25 : Closed Thanksgiving Day
  • Sat., Dec. 25 : Closed Christmas Day
View all holiday closings

Upcoming Events

CareerLink Job Searching

Thu, October 21, 2021 10:00 A.M.

Get help with your resume, job search, interviewing, online applications and more! Service provided by CareerLink from 10:00 am to 12:30 pm. Free! No registration required.

Free COVID-19 Testing

Tue, October 26, 2021 2:00 P.M.

Staff from Drexel University’s College of Medicine will be providing free Rapid Antigen COVID-19 testing outdoors in front of the library from 2:00-4:00 p.m. every Tuesday, open to anyone 8…

Parent Library Coffee Hours

Tue, October 26, 2021 4:30 P.M.

Parenting is hard and sometimes you just need a small break to connect with other parents. This is a space where you can ask questions and be heard. Please RSVP to get the back up Zoom link in…

Grandparent/Grandchild Storytime

Wed, October 27, 2021 10:30 A.M.

Whether as an older Philadelphian you are the primary caregiver for a young child, or just like to babysit every now and again, this storytime will center your relationship with the child(ren) in…


Located nearbythe Kingsessing Recreation Center, this branch serves the Kingsessing neighborhood. The building is a half block south of Chester Avenue.


Kingsessing gets its name from the Indian word Chincessing, meaning "bog meadow" or "place of the big shells." This name was applied by the Dutch and the Swedes to the whole region along the west bank of the lower Schuylkill River. First officially mentioned in 1667, Kingsessing was the first village within the territory of Philadelphia.

The township of Kingsessing became a part of Philadelphia in 1854. At that time, the Belmont Cricket Club Playing Field occupied the land on which the library and recreation center now sit.

Kingsessing Branch opened on November 29, 1919, the 22nd library in Philadelphia to be constructed with Carnegie funds. The library was renovated in 1999 as part of the "Changing Lives" campaign, which refurbished branches and brought Internet service to every library.

While you're in the neighborhood, you can visit Bartram's Garden at 54th and Lindbergh Boulevard. Established by John Bartram in 1730, it’s now the oldest botanical garden in the country.