To preserve, interpret, make available, and augment the valuable materials within its care.
About the Organization:
The Library Company of Philadelphia is America's oldest cultural institution, founded in 1731 by Benjamin Franklin. Since the 1950s it has functioned as an independent research library concentrating on American society and culture from the seventeenth through nineteenth centuries. Free and open to the public, the Library Company houses an extensive non-circulating collection of rare books, manuscripts, broadsides, ephemera and works of art. Serving a diverse constituency throughout Philadelphia and the nation, it offers comprehensive reader services, an internationally renowned fellowship program, an online public access catalog, and regular exhibitions and public programs.
In conjunction with its Program in Early American Economy and Society, the Library Company is augmenting, cataloging, and conserving its collections related to economy and society — including the areas of commerce, business, banking, and technology — and has compiled a regional survey of related scholarly resources. In addition, the program sponsors seminars, establishes public-outreach programs, holds conferences involving scholars of the early American economy, and publishes conference proceedings and monographs. The Library Company also provides fellowships.
The Library Company of Philadelphia Web site contains information about the organization's history, an overview of its extensive collections, and links to its online catalog, related library company resources, and the Philadelphia Area Consortium of Special Collections Libraries.
The Library Company of Philadelphia is supported by a modest endowment, gifts from corporations, grants from foundations, and its members.