Check out the March 16th article in Time Magazine on why Google is celebrating George Peabody, the ‘father of modern philanthropy.'”

Interested in exploring our wonderful and unique special collections? Looking for a quiet and beautiful space to study? Would you like to step back into the nineteenth century? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then it is time to visit the Peabody Library!

This library is part of the Sheridan Libraries Special Collections. It is a beautiful historic building that dates back to 1860 and is located in the Mount Vernon neighborhood in Baltimore. The building was designed by the Baltimore architect Edmund G. Lind, along with Dr. Nathaniel H. Morison, the first provost. View a slideshow to see historic architectural iron work inside the Peabody Library and also a few of the rare books from the collection!

Begun with a donation from George Peabody, a Massachusetts-born philanthropist, it was the Library of the Peabody Institute of the City of Baltimore until 1967. Then, it was handed over to Baltimore City and managed by the Enoch Pratt Free Library. In 1982, it was transferred to Johns Hopkins University. More information on its history is available on our website on “The Peabody Library” page. The major collection in the library comprises more than 300,000 volumes focusing mainly on the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The strengths of the collection are exploration and travel, history of science, American and British history, Greek and Latin classics, archaeology, biography, romance languages and literature, and American and English literature. To learn about the different collections, please visit our online guide.

Customized rare books sessions can also be arranged at the Peabody Library for your classes. Several of our faculty members from different departments bring their classes every semester to the Peabody. If you would like to arrange for a tour of the building or get an introduction to the historical collections in the fall semester, please contact our Curators.