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Boston Public Library

Books contributed by the Boston Public Library. Established in 1848 by an act of the Great and General Court of Massachusetts, the Boston Public Library (BPL) was the first large free municipal library in the United States. In 1839, French ventriloquist M. Nicholas Marie Alexandre Vattemare became the original advocate for a public library in Boston when he proposed the idea of a book and prints exchange between American and French libraries. The Mayor of the City of Boston, Josiah Quincy, Jr., ...



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Boston Public Library Interlibrary Loan
Boston Public Library Interlibrary Loan
collection
2,909
ITEMS
2.5M
VIEWS
collection

eye 2.5M

The Interlibrary Loan Department at the Boston Public Library serves as headquarters for interlibrary loan activity in the Boston Regional Library System. The Department receives requests from the six regional libraries in Massachusetts. These libraries send requests on behalf of their member libraries. These libraries send in requests for books and journal articles. They also can send reference and subject requests. The staff of the Interlibrary Loan Department searches for these requests in...
Topic: BPL Interlibrary Loan
Boston Public Library Anti-Slavery Collection
Boston Public Library Anti-Slavery Collection
collection
9,781
ITEMS
1.6M
VIEWS
collection

eye 1.6M

Anti-Slavery collection (approximately 40,000 pieces). In the late 1890's, the family of William Lloyd Garrison, along with others closely involved in the anti-slavery movement, presented the library with a major gathering of correspondence, documents, and other original material relating to the abolitionist cause from 1832 until after the Civil War. The major holdings consist of the papers of William Lloyd Garrison, Maria Weston Chapman and Deborah Weston, Lydia Maria Child, Amos Augustus...
Topics: Anti Slavery, William Lloyd Garrison, Abolition
collection

eye 393,643

The Thomas Pennant Barton Collection is acknowledged as one of the largest and most comprehensive collections in a public institution focusing on the writings of William Shakespeare and his contemporaries. The collection was the first in the United States to include the first four folios of the collected works of William Shakespeare, as well as some 45 early quarto editions of individual plays, many published during Shakespeare’s lifetime. As the preeminent Shakespeare collection from...
Topics: shakespeare, Thomas Pennant Barton, Boston Public Library
Incunabula
Incunabula
collection
318
ITEMS
194,734
VIEWS
collection

eye 194,734

The BPL’s incunabula collection embodies the varied output of the 15th-century European printing press. As of February, 2020, the collection is comprised of 583 physical items printed during the 15th century, the majority of which are books (issued either individually or as parts of multi-volume sets). The collection also contains a small number of single-sheet publications, blockbooks, and fragments of books that merit individual cataloging. In total, there are 555 discrete 15th-century...
Early English Playbooks, 1594-1799
Early English Playbooks, 1594-1799
collection
659
ITEMS
149,272
VIEWS
collection

eye 149,272

Comprised chiefly of individual editions of English stage plays issued between 1594 and 1799, the Boston Public Library's collection of early English playbooks is extensive and diverse. Numbering well over 1,500 items, the collection also includes masques, pageants, and other dramatic entertainments. Critical funding to support long-term preservation of and enhanced public access to Boston Public Library collections, including this one, was provided by the Associates of the Boston Public...
Norman B. Leventhal Map Center
Norman B. Leventhal Map Center
collection
354
ITEMS
311,258
VIEWS
collection

eye 311,258

The Norman B. Leventhal Map Center   at the Boston Public Library cares for more than a quarter million cartographic and geographic objects, ranging from the fifteenth century to the present, with a global scope and a focus on Boston and New England. Created in 2004 as a private-public partnership between the philanthropist Norman B. Leventhal and the Boston Public Library, the LMEC is located in the McKim Building at the BPL ’ s Central Library in Copley Square. The LMEC features a...
collection

eye 84,522

The Houghton Mifflin Company Trade Book Archival Collection is comprised of Trade Division materials that were originally kept in the Park Street building, which the company occupied from 1880 to 1994, before being donated to the Boston Public Library. The company’s editors used this collection as their working library. The collection includes adult and juvenile titles as well as reference materials, audio, and kits from Houghton Mifflin, Clarion, and other Houghton Mifflin Harcourt imprints.
collection

eye 26,376

This collection provides access to materials published by the Boston Public Library, critical administrative records of the library, and collection documentation, including printed finding aids, card catalogs, procedural guidelines, etc.
Boston Public Library Cookbook Collection
Boston Public Library Cookbook Collection
collection
168
ITEMS
222,324
VIEWS
collection

eye 222,324

Material for this collection has been contributed by the Boston Public Library.
collection

eye 100,020

The Ticknor Library of Spanish and Portuguese literature is a 10,000-volume collection that covers many aspects of Spanish, Portuguese, and Latin American literature and history, including books on art, science, law, and theology. As a collection, the Ticknor Collection is remarkable for its completeness in all that pertains to Spanish literature and belles lettres. Many of these volumes are first editions and handwritten manuscripts that are exceedingly rare. The materials are primarily in...
collection

eye 193,443

The Boston Public Library has an extensive collection of original manuscripts from the American Revolutionary War era. The letters and documents were drafted by John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, James Otis, Joseph Warren, George Washington and other important Revolutionary War figures. The materials are mostly of American origin, but also include British, European, and West Indian sources. Some of the topics covered include the war’s political origins, the unfolding of military and...
Defoe & Defoeana
Defoe & Defoeana
collection
97
ITEMS
72,804
VIEWS
collection

eye 72,804

Defoe & Defoeana The William P. Trent Collection of Defoe and Defoeana is one of the most comprehensive collections of Daniel Defoe and his contemporaries. In addition to writing some of the first English novels, Defoe was a prolific political pamphleteer and is considered by many to be a founder of modern journalism. The nucleus of this 30,000-volume collection is a set of first editions of Defoe’s works, bound in 77 volumes and formerly owned by Henry Labouchère. There are hundreds of...
OCLC number: ocm07014379
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Topic: Drawing
City of Boston Tax records, 1780 through 1821
City of Boston Tax records, 1780 through 1821
collection
63
ITEMS
17,434
VIEWS
collection

eye 17,434

Covering the years 1780 through 1821, this collection of Boston tax records is organized by year and ward. Beginning in 1802, the records for each year are generally divided into three main categories: taking books, tax books, and transfer books. Taking books (referred to as “valuation books” beginning in 1818) follow the order of the tax assessors' progress through each ward, street-by-street, and record names of individual residents or businesses, assessed values of realty and personalty,...
Book of Common Prayer
Book of Common Prayer
collection
48
ITEMS
32,920
VIEWS
collection

eye 32,920

The Benton Collection of Editions of the Book of Common Prayer was bequeathed by Josiah H. Benton in 1919. Benton was a trustee of the Boston Public Library from 1894 until his death on February 6, 1917, and served for many years as President of the Trustees of the Library. He bestowed much of his fortune to purchase books of “permanent value and authority, desirable for scholarly research and use,” and an equal amount of money for additions and improvement to the Library building. In...
The John Adams Library at the Boston Public Library
by Hale, Matthew, Sir, 1609-1676; John Adams Library (Boston Public Library) BRL; Emlyn, Sollom, 1697-1754; Adams, John, 1735-1826, former owner; Adams, John Quincy, 1767-1848, former owner; Adams, George Washington, 1801-1829, former owner; Adams, Charles Francis, 1807-1886, former owner
texts

eye 4,553

favorite 5

comment 0

Volume 1 inscribed: "John Adams 1760. John Quincy Adams 1800. George Washington Adams 1825." John Adams Library copy has bookplate, v. 1-2: Charles Francis Adams.
Topic: Pleas of the crown
Boston Public Library Interlibrary Loan
by Arango MejiÌa, Gabriel; Arango Mejía, Gabriel, 1872-1958, author
texts

eye 4,693

favorite 5

comment 0

2 volumes ; 24 cm
Topics: Registers of births, etc. -- Colombia -- Antioquia (Department), Registers of births, etc. --...
Philip Hale Scrapbook Collection
Philip Hale Scrapbook Collection
collection
62
ITEMS
61,201
VIEWS
collection

eye 61,201

The Philip Hale scrapbooks contain letters and programs, along with clippings with reviews and criticisms written by Hale and others, all compiled by Hale. There are 60 volumes organized by year, as well as two separate index volumes.
collection

eye 6,056

These Catholic directories provide information about the Roman Catholic Church in the United States, including names, addresses, and telephone numbers.
Boston Public Library Booklists
Boston Public Library Booklists
collection
233
ITEMS
17,959
VIEWS
collection

eye 17,959

A collection of book lists created and curated by Boston Public Library Librarians. It includes: Black Is... (1973-), published in observance of Black History Month and featuring books concerning the African American experience; Latinx Life (2003-), published in observance of Hispanic Heritage Month and featuring books concerning the Latinx experience; We Are Pride (2017-), published in observance of Pride Month and featuring books concerning the diverse experiences of the LGBTQ+...
Boston Public Library
by Pigafetta, Antonio, ca. 1480/91-ca. 1534. Primo viaggio intorno al globo terraqueo. English; Stanley, Henry Edward John Stanley, Baron, 1827-1903
texts

eye 33,832

favorite 40

comment 0

Includes bibliographical references and indexes
Topics: Magalhães, Fernão de, d. 1521, Voyages around the world
Source: bplgrhum
Boston Public Library
texts

eye 5,258

favorite 2

comment 0

Preface signed: Joseph S. Harris
Topic: Smith family
collection

eye 437

Scientific American began publishing its Architects and Builders Edition in 1885. From 1895 through 1901, it was known as the Building Edition, and then as the Scientific American Building Monthly from 1902 through 1905. It was replaced by American Homes and Gardens.
US Government Documents
by United States. Congress. House. Select Committee to Investigate Covert Arms Transactions with Iran; United States. Congress. Senate. Select Committee on Secret Military Assistance to Iran and the Nicaraguan Opposition
texts

eye 12,439

favorite 8

comment 1

"November 1987"--Cover
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Topics: Iran-Contra Affair, 1985-1990, Military assistance, American, Political corruption
Source: bplgovdocs
collection

eye 6,004

Index: p. 227-235
Topic: Wright family
''Book reference list'':p. [192-193]
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Topics: Printing, Book ornamentation, Decoration and ornament
Boston Public Library
by Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus, 1756-1791; Wallace, Grace, Lady, d. 1878, tr; Nohl, Ludwig, 1831-1885, ed
texts

eye 13,790

favorite 13

comment 0

OCLC number: ocm00510397
The Improper Bostonian
The Improper Bostonian
collection
36
ITEMS
4,481
VIEWS
collection

eye 4,481

The Improper Bostonian was a glossy lifestyle magazine first published in August 1991 "highlighting the people and places that make Boston a world-class city." After 28 years, publisher Wendy Semonian Eppich announced that the magazine ceased publication effective April 25, 2019. The magazine came out bi-weekly and reported on the area trends in a young and entertaining way. The magazine was a staple in Greater Boston, distributed free at kiosks within city limits, and available via a...
Early English Printers
Early English Printers
collection
19
ITEMS
19,644
VIEWS
collection

eye 19,644

The Boston Public Library holds a significant collection of books from the earliest years of English printing, including works from the presses of William Caxton, Richard Pynson, Wynkyn De Worde, and others.
[4] p., 130 leaves of plates : 37 cm
Topics: Monograms, Initials
Boston Public Library Interlibrary Loan
by Stumpp, Karl; Stumpp, Karl, author
texts

eye 2,810

favorite 16

comment 0

1,018 pages : 25 cm
Topics: Germans -- Soviet Union, Germany -- Emigration and immigration -- 18th century -- 19th century,...
Boston Public Library
texts

eye 125,073

favorite 65

comment 3

OCLC number: ocm07397140
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Topic: Yoruba (African people)
691, [7] p. 27 cm
Topics: Boone family, Boone, Daniel, 1734-1820
Boston Public Library Manuscript Catalog
Boston Public Library Manuscript Catalog
collection
123
ITEMS
5,641
VIEWS
collection

eye 5,641

This collection contains scans of the manuscript main entry catalog for the Boston Public Library Rare Books & Manuscripts Department. The main entry catalog is the best place to search for manuscripts. It contains approximately 130,000 cards, filed in alphabetical order by author name. Where no author is known, cards are filed alphabetically by title. Manuscripts related to certain special subjects, like “abolitionism,” or “music” are filed under author's name, as well as subject....
Boston Public Library
by Fox-Davies, Arthur Charles, 1871-1928
texts

eye 54,388

favorite 40

comment 1

Photocopy
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Topic: Heraldry -- Great Britain
Boston Public Library
by Jacobson & Company
texts

eye 6,607

favorite 60

comment 0

On cover: Architectural and decorative ornaments
Topics: Plaster, Decoration and ornament, Architectural
Source: BPL_scan_for_me
Attribution to Defoe is based on internal textual relationship to his works of proven authorship together with supporting external evidence. Cf. J.H. Moore. Defoe in the pillory. Bloomington, Ind., 1939, p. 126-188
Topic: Pirates
Source: bplsc
Boston Public Library Interlibrary Loan
by Camden, William, 1551-1623; Philipot, John, 1589?-1645; Hovenden, Robert, 1830-1908; Harleian Society
texts

eye 17,880

favorite 17

comment 0

Includes index
Topics: Visitations, Heraldic, Heraldry
Boston Public Library Interlibrary Loan
texts

eye 7,469

favorite 74

comment 0

Translation of: L'âme humaine
Topics: Soul, Aura
Source: bplill
Boston Public Library
by Fox-Davies, Arthur Charles, 1871-1928
texts

eye 13,511

favorite 103

comment 1

Title in red and black
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Topic: Heraldry
Source: Gen Ref
Boston Public Library
texts

eye 23,295

favorite 20

comment 0

Paged continuously
Topics: Phelps family, Phelps, William, 1599-1672
Medieval and Early Renaissance Manuscripts
Medieval and Early Renaissance Manuscripts
collection
14
ITEMS
12,766
VIEWS
collection

eye 12,766

The major part of this distinguished collection is comprised of religious and devotional texts, but there are also a number of secular and scientific titles. Many are superbly illuminated with exquisite miniatures illustrating the codices and single leaves. Some noteworthy volumes include a 10th-century Lectionary from the Benedictine Abbey of St. Allyre in Clermont, the earliest codex in New England; a Spanish Psalter consisting of 14 miniatures on vellum by Simon Bening, the most famous...
414 p. 23 cm
Topics: Chapman family, Chapman, Robert, 1616-1687, Chapman, William, d. 1699, Chapman, Edward, d. 1675,...
Published by an Association of the Fell family
Topics: Fell family, Fell, Joseph, 1668-1748
Source: bplsocsci
Boston Public Library
texts

eye 7,598

favorite 3

comment 0

Special collection -- Munsell imprints
Topics: Albany (N.Y.) -- Genealogy, United States -- Genealogy, Columbia County (N.Y.) -- Genealogy
Boston Public Library
by Jacobs, Harriet A. (Harriet Ann), 1813-1897; Child, Mrs. (Lydia Maria), 1802-1880, ed
texts

eye 19,341

favorite 44

comment 1

Preface signed: Linda Brent
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews )
Incunabula
by Colonna, Francesco, -1527; Alberti, Leon Battista, 1404-1472; Colonna, Francesco, approximately 1453-1517; Guidobaldo, da Montefeltro, Duke of Urbino, 1472-1508; Scytha, Johannes Baptista; Maro, Andreas, active 15th century-16th century; Manuzio, Aldo, 1449 or 1450-1515, printer; Crasso, Leonardo, publisher; Gottschalk, Paul, 1880-, former owner.
texts

eye 10,319

favorite 39

comment 0

For information about incunabula at the Boston Public Library, consult the library's incunabula research guide . The initial letters of successive chapters in this work form an acrostic that includes the author's name: Poliam frater Franciscus Columna permauit.
Topic: Architectural writing
305 p. 19 cm
Topics: Cycling, Bicycles
Source: bplgrhum
Boston Public Library
by Fox-Davies, Arthur Charles, 1871-1928
texts

eye 33,000

favorite 32

comment 1

Photocopy
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews )
Topic: Heraldry -- Great Britain
Boston Public Library
texts

eye 38,616

favorite 24

comment 1

810 p. 24 cm
favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews )
Topics: Bliss family, Morris, Oliver Bliss, Bliss, Sylvester, 1814-1863
US Government Documents
by United States. President's Commission on Immigration and Naturalization
texts

eye 7,014

favorite 2

comment 0

xv, 319 p. : 23cm
Topic: Emigration and immigration law
Source: bplgovdocs
Wing
Topics: Occultism, Alchemy, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric
Source: bplsc
US Government Documents
by United States. Congress. House. Committee on Un-American Activities
texts

eye 19,846

favorite 39

comment 5

128 p. 23 cm
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 5 reviews )
Topic: Communism -- United States
Boston Public Library
by United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on the Judiciary. Subcommittee to Investigate the Administration of the Internal Security Act and Other Internal Security Laws
texts

eye 40,168

favorite 1

comment 0

v. 1. A-K.--v. 2. L-Z
Topic: United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on the Judiciary. Subcommittee to Investigate the...
US Government Documents
by Boston (Mass.)
texts

eye 54

favorite 0

comment 0

v. ;
Boston Public Library Interlibrary Loan
by Graham, Sylvester, 1794-1851
texts

eye 4,346

favorite 18

comment 0

Cover title: Graham on bread
Topic: Bread
Source: bplill
"List of works consulted": v. 1, p. [iii]-iv
Topics: Antigua -- Genealogy, Antigua -- History
Source: bplill
US Government Documents
by Boston (Mass.)
texts

eye 53

favorite 0

comment 0

v. ;
Boston Public Library Interlibrary Loan
by Bannerman, Helen, 1862-1946; Neill, John R. (John Rea), ill
texts

eye 41,793

favorite 100

comment 4

Also includes ''The story of Topsy'' from Uncle Tom's Cabin
favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 4 reviews )
Source: bplill
US Government Documents
by Boston (Mass.)
texts

eye 53

favorite 0

comment 0

v. ;
Boston Public Library Interlibrary Loan
by Abizaid, John George, 1868-, author, translator; Abizaid, John George, 1868-, donor. MB
texts

eye 5,683

favorite 28

comment 1

"This book contains proof that the earth is flat and stationary, while the usn, moon and stars are in constant motion. Also letters howing the testimony of Scripture on the subejct."
favorite ( 1 reviews )
Topics: Geodesy, Pseudoscience
Boston Public Library Booklists
texts

eye 3,597

favorite 7

comment 0

Topics: Bibliography, Tolkien, J. R. R. (John Ronald Reuel), 1892-1973, Fantasy literature
Boston Public Library
by Nesfield, John Collinson
texts

eye 23,555

favorite 32

comment 0

Includes index
Topic: English language
Includes index
Topics: Gentry, Nicholas, fl. 1709, Gentry family
Source: bplsocsci
Boston Public Library
texts

eye 25,021

favorite 29

comment 1

xxviii p., 1 |., 892 p. 30 cm
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews )
Topic: Green family
Source: bplsocsci
540 p. 24 cm
Topics: Carr family, Carr, William, 1597-1672
US Government Documents
by United States. Congress. House. Committee on Un-American Activities
texts

eye 4,245

favorite 0

comment 0

8 pts. 24 cm
Topic: Communism -- New York (State) New York
"This copy is no. 674."
Topics: Brewster, William, 1566 or 7-1644, Brewster family, Allerton family
Source: bplsocsci
This, the first edition of the collected plays of William Shakespeare, is commonly known as the First Folio. Printed in London and issued in 1623 by Isaac Jaggard and Edward Blount, the First Folio contains 36 plays, 18 of which had never before appeared in print, including Macbeth, The Tempest, and Julius Caesar. Before the First Folio, a number of Shakespeare's plays had been published in various smaller formats that frequently contained significant textual divergences between editions.
US Government Documents
by United States. Adjutant General
texts

eye 73,788

favorite 11

comment 0

This register is also issued, later, in the Congressional Documents series, kept in the Special Libraries, wherin particular volumes can be found by means of the indexes and checklist kept in the Statistical Department. One copy of the latest issue is kept in the Information Office
Topic: United States. Army and Navy
Source: bplgovdocs
Boston Public Library
by Boston Public Library
texts

eye 13,772

favorite 5

comment 0

Title from cover
Topics: Boston Public Library, Boston Public Library, Bibliography, Classified catalogs, Catalogs
v. : 20-29 cm
Topics: Catholic Church -- United States -- Directories, Catholic Church -- Directories
US Government Documents
by Smithsonian Institution; Smithsonian Institution. Press
texts

eye 7,114

favorite 0

comment 0

Life sciences collection
Topic: Smithsonian Institution
Source: bplgovdocs
Boston Public Library
by Müller, Hermann Alexander, 1814-1894; Singer, Hans Wolfgang, b. 1867
texts

eye 31,989

favorite 2

comment 0

5.Bd. (separately paged), Nachträge und Berichtigungen; 6.Bd., Zweiter Nachtrag mit Berichtigungen
Topic: Artists