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Posts from Stephen A. Schwarzman Building

A Digitized History of The New York Public Library

The History of the New York Public Library, Astor, Lenox and Tilden Foundations provides a thorough account of 19th century New York City libraries, their consolidation into a unified system, and the construction of NYPL’s central library (now known as the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building).Read More ›

Dance Your Way Through Fall

Summer is almost formally over and our fall work is already in full swing. There are a plethora of events at the New York Public Library revolving around dance to take you through the end of the year, including a conversation with choreographer and MacArthur Foundation Fellow Alexei Ratmansky and new Saturday brunch events at the Library for the Performing Arts! Get them on your calendar now!Read More ›

NYPL Ask the Author: Joseph O'Neill and Hal Foster

For this installment, we're doubling down with Joseph O'Neill and Hal Foster before they discuss O'Neill's new novel The Dog, which he wrote during his Cullman Fellowship in 2009-2010. Read More ›

NYPL Ask the Author: Tom Perrotta

Tom Perrotta discusses Tolkien, football stories, and how to eat alone. Read More ›

To the Left: The Nation Online Archive

The entire run of the Nation, from its first issue in 1865 to the present (save for the most recent month) is online through The Nation Archive, which is available only at the four research centers of the New York Public Library. Read More ›

Mark My Words: Printers’ Marks in the Rare Book Division

The penguin. The borzoi. When we peruse our bookshelves, we see spines decorated with the symbols of publishing houses. But this tradition is not modern: starting with the second book ever printed, members of the trade were making their presence known. These marks were words and illustrations carved into wood and included at the beginning or end of a book to indicate the printer responsible. In NYPL’s Rare Book Division, we have a treasure trove of printers’ marks to explore. Read More ›

In the Absence of Sparrows: James Foley Remembered

Today the Academy of American Poets features Johnson's powerful poem "In the Absence of Sparrows," honoring his close friend, as part of its Poem-a-Day series.Read More ›

Play Strike! Exploring NYC Playgrounds Through Historical Newspapers

At the turn of the 20th century, children’s lifestyles were not quite what they are today. Child labor laws were not declared constitutional until 1938 and children largely socialized with their adult co-workers in dance halls, gambling dens, and gin mills. It was this children-as-adults culture that sparked the play movement, removing children from the “physical and moral dangers of the street” to playgrounds, under the direction of trained play leaders.Read More ›

From the Archives of the Century: The Century Foundation & NYC, Part II

My previous post detailed the Twentieth Century Fund’s relationship with New York City issues and its first task force on New York City’s economic troubles in the 1970s, the Task Force on Prospects and Priorities of New York City.Read More ›

NYPL Labs and Map Division host first library Net Artist Residency

NYPL Labs is pleased to announce the Library's first-ever Net Artist Residency, in partnership with local hardware startup Electric Objects.Read More ›

Margot Adler 1946-2014

Remembering Margot Adler, a writer in the Allen Room.Read More ›

United States v. "The Spirit of '76"

During World War I, the making of movies—even seemingly pro-American films—could be a dangerous proposition, given the wartime hysteria so prevalent on the U.S. home front. Case in point:Read More ›

How to Find Historical Photos of New York City

Researchers commonly seek photographs of places in New York as they once existed in history. HistoryPin.com and WhatWasThere.Com have done admirable work in placing historic photos in their geographic context, however they represent but a fraction of available photos, and associated descriptive metadata can vary in accuracy and precision.Read More ›

July is International Zine Month

It's International Zine Month (July 21 is Zine Library Day!) and they are everywhere... Read More ›

John Quinn's Art Collection

When few American collectors or museums were investing in the European avant garde, New York lawyer John Quinn (1870–1924) built an art collection primarily comprised of Modernist works. Through social connections and advice from trusted consultants, Quinn became discerning connoisseur and patron of new art.Read More ›

Bustles, Bear Grease, & Burnt Brandy: 19th Century Self-Improvement Manuals in the Art & Architecture Collection

Rapidly evolving developments in printing technology and paper manufacture during the 19th century were a democratizing process which lowered costs and made books of all kinds accessible to a wider audience. In that context it is interesting that, even early on, one of the most popular genres of these inexpensive books was self-improvement. The selection that follows is the barest tip of the iceberg of what is available in the Art & Architecture 

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Peeling Off The Painted Layers of NYC Walls: Experiments With The Google Street View Archive

As a web developer who works on a screen and an illustrator that works on paper, I have always admired those who could paint big—often on impossibly large and inconveniently placed walls—only to be erased in a matter of weeks or days. The ephemeral nature of street art is what makes it simultaneously appealing and frustrating as a viewer. However, Google Maps recently rolled out a feature allowing users to go back in 

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From the Archives of the Century: The Century Foundation & NYC, Part I

In 2012, the Manuscripts and Archives Division acquired the records of the Century Foundation, a non-partisan research institute based in New York City previously known as the Twentieth Century Fund and originally founded as the Cooperative League. Since its founding, the Century Foundation (TCF) has supported the creation and dissemination of progressive policy ideas through the funding of books, position papers, pamphlets, task forces, and conferences that address current issues faced in the United States economy and democracy. The Century Foundation records document the governance of the Read More ›

Bloomsday in the Berg Collection

James Joyce's Ulysses is a novel unique in the history of English literature, perhaps all literature, in that it has a day dedicated to its celebration all over the world. The day is named for Leopold Bloom, one of the novel's three chief characters.Read More ›

Swan Song

My job has offered many satisfactions. It is my way of engaging with the world. Although it would be impossible to guess how many people I've encountered in my librarian capacity, I can only hope that I've managed to clear up even a bit of bewilderment and confusion.Read More ›
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