As a librarian, I like to visit local libraries when I travel. As a tourist, I like to take photographs. Recently, I visited the main branch of the New York Public Library, in the Stephen A. Schwarzman building on 5th Avenue at 42nd. The building stands as an example of fine architecture and a symbol of the past, present and future of information, learning, and humanity.
Unarguably, the NYPL has plenty to offer its metropolitan patrons, but it also has something to offer us. The NYPL hosts online resources and image galleries accessible to anyone, anywhere, which are packed with fun multimedia and primary source materials. Take a look.
The Online Exhibitions, which are web sites built to reflect physical exhibits displayed at the NYPL locations, offer a unique collection of images, essays, and even games.
For example: Thirty Years of Photography at the New York Public Library
The NYPL has digitized over 800,000 images from its collections and made them freely available online in the NYPL Digital Gallery. The images include manuscripts, maps, vintage posters, rare prints and photographs.
Like this one: a collection of menus!
Miss Frank E. Buttolph American Menu Collection, 1851-1930.
Finally, best of all, the Digital Projects, an assortment of images and multimedia, are just fun and fascinating to review.
Here’s an example: John Cage Unbound: A Living Archive
A searchable online archive of manuscripts and video interpretations of John Cage’s work, with timeline and brief bio. (It’s a collection of primary sources!)
If you use an item from one of the online resources, don’t forget about intellectual property!
More reasons why the NYPL is so great: