New York Public Library
The New York Public Library has about six million volumes, making it the 27th largest library in the United States. Its massive structure on Fifth Avenue is one of the landmarks of Manhattan.
It is one of the world's major research libraries.
The wealthiest man in American in the early 1800s was John Jacob Astor (1763–1848), who made his fortune from fur trade. He donated a library in New York City which opened in 1849, and a book collector named James Lenox (1800–1880) added to it. In 1886, former Governor Samuel J. Tilden (1814–1886) donated about $2.4 million to establish the first true library of New York City. This consolidated and added to the Astor and Lenox gifts.
Andrew Carnegie donated $5.2 million for branch libraries, on the condition that the City of New York fund their operations and maintenance.
- Jackson, Kenneth, ed. The Encyclopedia of New York City (1995), excerpt and text search