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About the Aguilar Library


Patrons gather for Italian Story Hour.

The Aguilar branch dates to 1886, and it is named for Sephardic Jewish author Grace Aguilar.  More Puerto Ricans and Spanish speakers have moved in and the neighborhood has changed, but the library remains vital.

The branch was  designed by architects Herts and Tallant and built with funds donated by Andrew Carnegie. In 1905, when the Aguilar joined The New York Public Library, it served large Jewish and Italian immigrant populations. After World War II, an influx of Hispanics led to an extensive collection of Spanish material. The building features a graceful hanging gallery with a cast-iron railing and a pressed-glass floor, and it was renovated in 1996 as part of the Library's Adopt-a-Branch program.

The three-story library features public computers that can be reserved for 45-minute sessions and unlimited WiFi. The first floor houses adult and young adult collections. The second floor is home to a children's room, and the third floor is a multiuse room. In the basement, the Center for Writing Excellence is undergoing renovations. The branch also has an Adult Learning Center that operates 6 days a week.

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In line for a book. 
Aguilar's facade.
The packed reading room.

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