Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Traveling Librarian in New York

The traveling librarian went to New York. I spent last week amidst the mindboggling human sea that is Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, and the Bronx (never made it to Staten Island). Trying my hardest not to look like a rube yet with a Manhattan map ready in my back pocket, I hit the pavement, hunting New York’s great libraries. First stop was the New York Public Library’s Humanities and Social Sciences Library. Yup, that one. After saying hello to Patience and Fortitude, I headed into the library. The reading room is incredible. I could have spent the day reading there bolstered by the long list of luminaries who have done such throughout the building’s existence. However, with limited days and Yankees tickets in my other back pocket, I reluctantly left.

My trip to NYU’s Bobst Library paled in comparison. While the library is impressive, due to its private affiliation access remains limited to faculty and students. Even sincere pleas of “but I’m a librarian visiting from Texas” failed to get me past the security guard.

Sore feet prohibited me from visiting Columbia’s Low Library. In retrospect, this was a mixed blessing as I look forward to visiting next time. Other significant libraries in the city include the Mercantile Library, the Brooklyn Public Library, and a whole host of others I look forward to discovering while ambling along avenues and side streets of this ridiculous yet incredible city.

The New York Public Library: Its Architecture and Decoration

The New York Public Library: A Universe of Knowledge

1 comment:

Michael A. said...

The Bobst Library at NYU also hosts a full MLS/ALA certified program through Long Island University's Palmer School of Information. As a graduate of the Palmer School, it was made keenly aware to us that for nearly a decade there was no way to obtain a Master's in Library Science in Manhattan. Columbia closed its doors in the late 80s.

New York City also is home to MLS programs at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn and St. John's University and Queens College in the borough of Queens.