Widener Library

2808 West Lehigh Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19132-3296
(28th & Lehigh Ave.)

Open today 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Sunday, 2/10 Closed
Monday, 2/11 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Tuesday, 2/12 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.*
Wednesday, 2/13 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Thursday, 2/14 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Friday, 2/15 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Saturday, 2/16 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • * Tuesday had hour changes – Due to staff shortage.
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 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Upcoming Closures

  • Mon., Feb. 18 : Closed Presidents' Day
  • Thu., Mar. 7 : Opening at 2:00 PM Due to staff development.
  • Thu., Apr. 4 : Opening at 2:00 PM Due to staff development.
  • Fri., Apr. 19 : Closed Good Friday
  • Sun., Apr. 21 : Closed Easter
View all holiday closings

Photo of Widener Library


  • 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)

Nearby Libraries

Support Widener Library

Donate Now

Upcoming Events

Toddler Storytime at Widener Library

Tue, Feb 19, 10:30 A.M.

Join us for Toddler Storytime every Tuesday where we will explore exciting new worlds through stories, songs, and crafts.  Toddlers must be…

Tech Tuesday

Tue, Feb 19, 3:00 P.M.

Hands on exploration of various technical devices and  applications. Learn to write a song or music to GarageBand or make a video and direct…

Guess What This Is?

Tue, Feb 19, 3:30 P.M.

Participants will guess at what various liquids are by using their senses of smell and feel to see if they can correctly name them.    …

Science Wednesday

Wed, Feb 20, 3:00 P.M.

Pretend to be scientists, research and experiment with basic chemistry, make paper circuits, and explore!

Mindful Breathing for Kids

Wed, Feb 20, 4:00 P.M.

Mindfulness involves the use of simple breathing techniques to manage  everyday challenges, which can affect people of all ages. Children…

Artsy Thursday

Thu, Feb 21, 3:00 P.M.

Explore using various mediums and materials to create art. Paint, draw, sew, or just experiment for fun. 

View all events


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!


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?