Tuesday, May 24, 2022
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The Boston Athenaeum-Boston’s Little Recognized Crown Jewel



In the present day, I’ve a particular deal with to share with you.

Now, a few of you positively know concerning the Boston Athenaeum. (please go to their web site right here.) I do know this as a result of earlier than transferring right here, a number of of you talked about that it’s a:

1. must-see place in Boston


2. I’ll like it.

The reply is:

1. Sure!


2. Sure!


So, what’s the Boston Athenaeum? Does it have something to do with Athens, Greece?


The Boston Antheneum is a library with a set of over 500,000 books. However, not solely that, there are a whole bunch of items of fantastic artwork, furnishings, sculpture.

And, sure, some beautiful mid-Nineteenth-century classical structure.


balcony view - quiet roomMy favourite room on the Boston Athenaeum, which you’ll be seeing extra of in a bit.

The Boston Atheneum is positioned on Beacon Avenue, only a smidgey previous the Massachusetts Golden domed statehouse. And, close to the northeast nook of Boston Widespread. This makes it extraordinarily handy to go to Beacon Hill, the Boston Widespread, or the Public Backyard.


Utilizing probably the most direct route, the stroll is just below one mile from my dwelling.


This morning, I went on a tour of the Boston Athenaeum that was organized by the Beacon Hill Ladies’s Discussion board. Initially, I used to be solely on the wait-list. Nonetheless, two days in the past, I bought phrase {that a} spot opened up for me. Hooray! I used to be super-excited as a result of a few month in the past, I went there with my darling pal and cracker-jack realtor, Wendy Oleksiak, to listen to a lecture. Whereas we solely noticed a small portion of the constructing, what we noticed was beautiful.

The Boston Atheneum was began in 1807, however not in its current location, accomplished in 1849. Like immediately, it was a library, artwork gallery, and thriving cultural middle for culture-minded Bostonians.

In the present day, there are quite a few studying rooms and areas for the general public and a few for members solely.


So, guess who their latest member is?


Sure, I joined after the tour. As a member, I’ve a free run of the place. Plus, I can deliver company, free of charge and attend lectures and different occasions.


So, Laurel… Does that imply if I’m in Boston, and I need to go to the Boston Athenaeum if I suck as much as you, first, you’ll get me in totally free?


I can’t promise, however it’s price a attempt. And, no, you don’t should suck as much as me. All I ever hope for is that individuals be variety. Anyway, I plan to hang around right here no less than as soon as every week.

And, sure, you’re about to see why the Boston Athenaeum is that this classical lady’s dwelling away from dwelling and supply of infinite inspiration.

Thoughts you. I took about 300 pictures immediately whereas making an attempt to additionally not be (too) impolite on the tour. In reality, I do miss a little bit of the tour however nonetheless managed to run round, take pics and hear concurrently.


Boston Athenaeum - Library 1st floor

Adjoining to the reception space on the primary ground of the Boston Athenaeum is the primary library. Most if not the entire flooring have a catwalk, and a few have balconies at both finish.

Off of this room is a staircase and an elevator to the opposite flooring, of which there are 5 flooring, plus a basement stage.


Nonetheless, the unique construction had solely three flooring.


The fourth and fifth flooring had been added in 1914 when the constructing was fully renovated.


Boston Athenaeum 1st floor

The massive arched doorway results in a big room which I consider was as soon as used solely to show sculpture.


main hall-Boston Athenaeum

There are nonetheless many items of classical sculpture. Nonetheless, that is the room I sat in after I attended a lecture early in February 2022.


Sculpture hall Boston Athanaeum

Beautiful structure, big home windows, stunning artwork.


Granary burying ground - old cemetary Boston Athenaeum

And, quiet neighbors (!) on the Granary burying floor on the property behind the Athenaeum. I perceive that there are some huge names in historical past buried right here.


George Washington bust

Considered one of them is just not George Washington. Nonetheless, George’s picture figures closely on the Athenaeum within the type of sculptures, work, and furnishings, too!


Boston Athenaeum - sculpture

I don’t know the identify of this sculpture, however I discover it attention-grabbing.


art Boston Athenaeum Annie Adams Fields - John Singer Sargent

There are two work by John Singer-Sargent on the Athenaeum, and that is one in every of them. Portrait of Annie Adams Fields.



I took this picture through the tour of Albert Gordon’s Studying Room. It is a quiet members-only room. In a while, after I joined, I bought to go in and see the beautiful artwork in right here shut up.


outside March 2022 - Boston Athanaeum

It was a misty day in Boston, as you’ll be able to see. I like how the clouds soften the skyscrapers within the background.


George Washington Bookcase - trustee

We really started the tour out of order as a result of there was a gathering at 10:30, and we might not have been capable of see the room. That is an oval room with massive home windows and apricot-painted partitions on the fourth ground.

That is the trustees’ room. Within the center is a big desk, and the bookcase above is a duplicate of 1 George Washington had.

There are additionally two work of him flanking the bookcase.


Art Trustee

I like this elegant vignette.


Antique Rug

I’m unsure the place this vintage rug was. It would’ve been within the trustee’s room; unsure.


Elegant woman -Boston Athenaeum

That is one other beautiful portray within the trustee’s room on the Boston Athenaeum. I’m sorry, however I forgot to notice who painted this pretty woman.


4th floor library -Boston Athenaeum

Exterior the trustee’s room is that this pretty library on the Boston Athenaeum.


Boston Athenaeum Beacon Hill Women

Boston Athenaeum Beacon Hill Ladies’s Discussion board Tour March 2022

Above are among the girls on the tour with me. I apologize. I don’t keep in mind if that is the third or second ground.


Roman Bust

All through your complete library are 100s of items of artwork and sculpture, comparable to this basic Roman bust.


Bust Boston Athenaeum

One other stunning bust. These are replicas of different statues.


Boston Athenaeum- library catwalk

One other view of the identical library.


Spiral staircase Boston Athenaeum

Everybody admired the charming iron spiral staircase.

Talking of staircases, regardless that I haven’t been speaking about it, issues are transferring, albeit slowly, concerning my renovation. Nonetheless, I don’t have any concrete information to share at this level.


We completed off on the basement stage, which didn’t seem like a basement.


Really, it was a former theater. And, for the reason that ceilings had been additional excessive, they put down a ground about ten toes from the ceiling. Nonetheless, they left the columns, which look unusually thick since they’re basically “lower” in half.


Basement statue -Boston Athenaeum

I do love this sculpture above of a lady chopping her hair. I did take the entrance view, however since her again is so pretty, that is the picture you’re getting. :]


Ceiling detail and lights basement Boston Athenaeum

The basement options these beautiful hand-painted ceilings.

Earlier within the tour, we went as much as the fifth-floor quiet studying room library.


quiet reading room entrance

Nonetheless, within the couple of minutes between once we had been instructed we wanted to be quiet and touchdown there, Laurel fully forgot. It wasn’t that I used to be speaking.


Boston Athenaeum - quiet room

Sadly, I let loose an audible gasp after I first noticed this beautiful architectural gem. Everybody whisper-giggled after I just-as-quickly realized my mistake and lined my mouth in wide-eyed horror. I’m certain it occurs regularly. This room is heaven on earth.


Sadly, we solely had about 5 minutes on this room on the Boston Athenaeum.


So, after buying my membership, I hightailed it again up right here for extra photos.


Boston Athenaeum - quiet reading room


Boston Athanaeum 5th floor


catwalk view - Boston Athenaeum

And, sure, I walked up a type of tiny staircases that are nowhere close to “as much as code.” (The treads are barely over 8″ and code is 10″.) Nonetheless, I walked alongside the catwalk and took extra photos from up there.


5th floor quiet reading room


I hope you loved this digital tour of the Boston Athenaeum and can take into account checking it out in the event you come to go to Boston.


I’m fairly certain my data is correct; nonetheless, if anybody finds something which isn’t, please let me know, and I’ll make the change. Along with full memberships, it’s also possible to get a day cross to make use of the amenities. And, after all, you’ll be able to at all times attend the lectures for a small payment.

For more information concerning the Boston Athenaeum please go right here.

Additionally, please comply with the Boston Athenaeum on Instagram right here.

It’s also possible to discover the Beacon Hill Ladies’s Discussion board on Instagram.(You would possibly discover me in a number of of the pictures)



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