Press Room

Boston Public Library Offers Tour of City’s Archival Center

by admin

State-of-the-art facility houses historical items

0628archivesBoston Public Library will host a free, public tour of the City of Boston Archival Center on Thursday, October 17, at 5:30 p.m. Led by Mary Frances O’Brien, Chief of Public Services for the library, visitors will explore the climate-controlled, state-of-the-art facility that houses more than one million library materials, including books, journals, newspapers, maps, films, and archival materials dating back centuries.

“We are thrilled to show visitors the facility that carefully houses some of Boston Public Library’s holdings,” said Mary Frances O’Brien, Chief of Public Services. “We consider the Archival Center an important part of our network of locations throughout the city.”

The scope of resources available at the Archival Center include the Alice M. Jordan Collection of children’s literature; state, federal, and local documents; and unedited local news footage from the 1960s and 1970s, including coverage of demonstrations, elections, snowstorms, and floods. The facility holds some of the library’s special research collections and a portion of its circulating collections. Requested materials from the circulating collection will be retrieved by staff and delivered to the Central Library or to a branch location, and if a large collection is requested, users are welcome to use the Archival Center’s reading room by appointment.

The City of Boston Archival Center provides the physical accommodation, security, environmental control, and document conservation for Boston Public Library collections, the City of Boston archives, and the Boston Redevelopment Authority archives. The Archival Center is also home to the City Archaeology Lab, which contains materials from 39 archaeological surveys excavated in the City of Boston.

The Center is located at 201 Rivermoor Street in West Roxbury and is accessible via the MBTA’s Orange line, #39 Bus Route, and #36 Bus Route. From the Rivermoor Street and Industrial Park stop on the #36 route, walk two blocks southwest on Rivermoor Street. The Archival Center is the fourth building on the right.

Boston Public Library has a Central Library, twenty-four branches, a literacy center, map center, business library, and a website filled with digital content and services. Established in 1848, Boston Public Library has pioneered public library service in America. It was the first publicly supported municipal library in America, the first public library to lend books, the first to have a branch library, and the first to have a children’s room. Each year, the Boston Public Library hosts thousands of programs and serves millions of people. All of its programs and exhibitions are free and open to the public. At Boston Public Library, books are just the beginning. To learn more, visit

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