Completed in 1895 by famed architects McKim, Mead, and White, the Central Library’s original building is known for its perfect proportions, classical serenity, and elegance. Featuring Bates Hall’s majestic barrel-arched ceiling, murals by the renowned French artist Pierre Puvis de Chavannes, the Abbey Room’s "Quest of the Holy Grail" murals, John Singer Sargent murals, and a magnificent deep interior courtyard, the building is a constant source of aesthetic surprise and satisfaction. The Central Library’s Johnson building first opened in 1972, is currently undergoing renovations designed by William Rawn Associates, currently undergoing renovations.
Art and Architecture tours will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis at 1pm, 2pm, and 3pm on Sunday; meet in the McKim vesibule at the Dartmouth Street entrance.
Boston Public Library, Central Branch
Architect: McKim, Mead, and White (original), Philip Johnson (addition), William Rawn Associates (renovations)
Year: 1895, 1972, 2016
Please enter through the McKim Building, 230 Dartmouth Street, Boston 02116
617-536-5400 | Wheelchair accessible