Working at the Library of Congress, it is almost impossible to not become a bibliophile and lover of libraries. Libraries serve as vessels of knowledge around the globe and the buildings that house them often reflect the size and importance of their collections.
The State Library of NSW was first established in 1826 as a subscription library and later purchased to become a public library in 1869. The Mitchell Wing of the present day library was completed in 1910.
The library is protected by heavy bronze portico doors with intricate depictions of the history of Australia.
Glass doors with the library’s former name – Public Library of New South Wales – welcome visitors to the Mitchell Wing. Once inside, one is greeted by a large reproduction of the Tasman Map, leading visitors to the Mitchell Library Reading Room.
Unfortunately, my schedule did not allow for me to stay and browse the collection. There are some rare holdings, including Australia’s oldest surviving photograph and “Australia’s first unique coins,” the Holey Dollar and the Dump. Next time!
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