Hospital's Historic Library, the first medical library in the
United States, was begun in 1762 as a teaching
and reference library for the hospital's managers, physicians
and medical students. In addition to thousands of medical and
scientific volumes, the library contains many books on natural
history and botany.
Also present are several rare incunabula,
books printed before 1501 during the infancy of printing press
technology. The library's collection is historically significant
in that it was created not as a collection of rare books but
as a working library. It was assembled at a time when Philadelphia
was recognized as the center for medicine and science in the
United States. Through the selection of books, it is possible
to trace the history of medical education and treatment in
the United States.
For more historical information about the Library, please explore
the Historic Timeline. In regards to visitation and other related
The Library's books
are searchable on the University of Pennsylvania Library's on-line
public access catalog known as FRANKLIN.
The Historic Library is open for visitor's tours and
is used for scholarly research. The library is open weekdays
from 9am to 4:30pm. To view materials, an appointment
an appointment or for information about the Historic Library's
holdings, please call
(215) 829-5434 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.