: This photograph shows the reading room and four-story atrium of the Cincinnati Public Library, Cincinnati, Ohio, ca. 1935-1943. This photograph was taken from top level at the back corner of the atrium, facing towards the front of the building.
This building which is now referred to as the “Old Main” Public Library, was located at 629 Vine Street (west side), between 6th and 7th Streets. Completed in 1874 and designed by architect James W. McLaughlin, the building was considered one of the most magnificent public libraries in the country.
This area pictured here had five levels of cast-iron alcoves. Visible is the catalog desk (center, right) and a bust of James Murdoch (1811-1893), Cincinnati actor and public speaker (bust located under the "Fiction" sign, lower left corner). It is one of the few statues that survived the move to the “New Main” and can be found in the Literature & Languages section.
The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County is now one of the largest and busiest public libraries in the world and operates 41 branch locations. The library began as a subscription library in 1802. On March 14, 1853, it became the Cincinnati Public Library. View on Ohio Memory.
: AL06194 Subjects
: Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County; McLaughlin, James W., 1834-1923; Libraries--Ohio--History; Cincinnati (Ohio); Murdoch, James Edward, 1811-1893 Places
: Cincinnati (Ohio); Hamilton County (Ohio)