Stephen A. Schwarzman Building
Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street
Third Floor
Room 328
New York, NY 10018
Fully Accessible
Closed today
Rare Book Division
Day Date Hours
Monday 6/17 CLOSED
Tuesday 6/18 11 AM–5 PM
Wednesday 6/19 CLOSED
Thursday 6/20 11 AM–5 PM
Friday 6/21 12 PM–5 PM
Saturday 6/22 1 PM–5 PM
Sunday 6/16 CLOSED

About the Division

Scan of four panels from an early book.

The printed collections of The New York Public Library could be said to begin in the Rare Book Division, with nearly 800 pieces of incunabula, ranging from the 1460 Catholicon to Schedel's Liber Chronicarum, and including De Bury's Philobiblon, Breydenbach's Peregrinatio in Terram sanctam, Holle's 1482 printing of Ptolemy's Cosmographia, and a number of editions of Sacro Bosco's Sphaera mundi. Works printed by Peter Schöffer, William Caxton, Günter Zainer, and Anton Koberger are represented, as are block books, indulgences, and even several examples of Asian printing, which predate the incunabular period. Learn more about this division.

Visiting the Collection

Can researchers access the collection without an appointment?

Patrons are welcome to visit the reading room during opening hours to speak with a librarian in person about their research. However, advance notice is necessary to consult material. To request a research appointment, create a Special Collections Account, click on "Appointments → Make an Appointment," and follow the prompts—or email

Are virtual consultations available and are they required before making an onsite research appointment?

Researchers are welcome to book a virtual consultation with one of our librarians to discuss research needs via phone or video chat. However, this is not a requirement to book a research appointment.

Who can researchers contact with further questions?

Please email us at with any additional queries.


Explore Subdivisions

George Arents Collection

Third Floor

12 PM–5 PM

Request a Class Visit

Interior of a library reading room, featuring various researchers reading books at wooden tables with gold lamps.

We work with educators to design class visits that use the Library's remarkable collections to foster creative inquiry, build critical thinking and visual literacy skills, and inspire wonder and excitement around the process of primary source analysis and research. Learn more.

Explore Subdivisions