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About the 125th Street Library


125th Street branch
The branch opened in 1901.

The 125th Street branch of The New York Public Library has served East Harlem since its opening on March 12, 1901. Reflecting the cultural diversity of the neighborhood, the library now offers books and magazines in English and Spanish and a strong African-American heritage collection.

The impressive building was designed by McKim, Mead & White, built with funds donated by Andrew Carnegie, and it sits on the eastern end of Harlem's famed 125th Street between Second and Third Avenues. In 2000, the branch received new furniture, telecommunications equipment, computers on the first and second floors, and a new children's story-hour area as part of a three-month renovation.

The two-story library features public computers that can be reserved for 45-minute sessions and unlimited WiFi. The first floor holds the adult and teen collections and has a distinctive ceiling that is divided into four vaulting, concave sections. The recently renovated children's room is located on the second floor. In the basement, there is a community space that neighborhood groups can reserve for free.

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