Widener Library

By Appointment services available - call to schedule

2808 West Lehigh Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19132-3296
28th & Lehigh Ave.
Closed Today
Sunday, 8/7 Closed
Monday, 8/8 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. *
Tuesday, 8/9 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. *
Wednesday, 8/10 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Thursday, 8/11 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. *
Friday, 8/12 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Closed *
Saturday, 8/13 Closed
  • * Monday had hour changes – This library is a Cooling Center today.
  • * Tuesday had hour changes – Extended hours due to cooling center.
  • * Thursday had hour changes – Materials pickup service will be available 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM
  • * Friday had hour changes – Materials pickup service will be available 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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., Sep. 1 : Opening at 2:00 PM due to staff development
  • Mon., Sep. 5 : Closed Labor Day
  • Thu., Oct. 6 : Opening at 2:00 PM due to staff development
  • Mon., Oct. 10 : Closed Indigenous People Day
View all holiday closings

Facilities

  • Book drop box
  • Computers for public use
  • Meeting space (reservation required)
  • Parking lot
  • Photocopier (black/white)
  • Printing (black/white)
  • Public restrooms
  • Street parking
  • Wireless internet access (wi/fi)
  • Children's only restroom
  • Electrical outlets available
  • Handicapped accessible
  • Scanner
  • Street parking (free)
  • Water fountain

Upcoming Events

PA CareerLink® Job Search Assistance

Tue, August 16, 2022 11:00 A.M.

PA CareerLink® Job Search Assistance Meet with a Community Workforce Connector from 11:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for one-on-one job search assistance. Get individualized support with…

Read Baby Read Baby & Toddler Story time

Wed, August 24, 2022 11:00 A.M.

Join us for stories & songs perfect for families with infants and toddlers! Siblings welcome.  Masking & social distancing is encouraged indoors. For questions, please call or email…

PA CareerLink® Job Search Assistance

Tue, August 30, 2022 11:00 A.M.

PA CareerLink® Job Search Assistance Meet with a Community Workforce Connector from 11:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for one-on-one job search assistance. Get individualized support with…

PA CareerLink® Job Search Assistance

Tue, September 13, 2022 11:00 A.M.

PA CareerLink® Job Search Assistance Meet with a Community Workforce Connector from 11:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for one-on-one job search assistance. Get individualized support with…

About

Recently moved into a brand-new glass-fronted building, the Widener Branch serves the communities of North Central Philadelphia, Strawberry Mansion, and Allegheny West. The branch has an African Plains theme. Come in and try to find the hidden elephants and giraffes!

History

In 1807, Penn Township was formed from the western portion of the Township of Northern Liberties. The area surrounding Widener Branch was usually called North Penn. In the mid 19th Century, the neighborhood was known as Swampoodle. The area developed after trolleys became electrified in 1892 and is now known as Strawberry Mansion/Allegheny West.

In 1900, the H. Josephine Widener Branch of the Free Library was opened in the Widener Mansion at Broad and Girard, a gift of Peter A.B. Widener in memory of his wife. In 1946, the Widener mansion was sold. The proceeds were used to buy and remodel a former bank building at 2531 W. Lehigh Avenue.

Designed by architects Buell, Kratzer and Powell, the current building opened on January 31, 2005. The library is based on the theme of the African Plains, with four special areas for youths: Preschool Plains, School-Age Savanna, Pre-Teen Plateau, and Teen Terrain. Abstract elephants and giraffes are hidden in the design of the library. Can you find them?