New York Public Library Yorkville Branch-Pictures
222 East 79th Street
New York, NY 10075
Year(s) built: 1902
Year opened: 1902
Architect(s): James Brown Lord
Builder(s): Isaac Hopper & Son
Status: Library, New York City individual landmark, listed on State and National Registers of Historic Places
The Yorkville library is located on the south side of East 79th Street between 2nd and 3rd Avenues. The building is set up against the sidewalk.
While plans for the Yorkville Branch were drawn up before the Carnegie grant was received, it was the first of the branches funded by Carnegie to open. Built in 1902 by the architect James Brown Lord, it is one of twenty branches builtin Manhattan and one of sixty-seven throughout the whole city.
The Yorkville Branch has several characteristics of the urban Carnegie library type. It has a classically-inspired style (a simplified Beaux-Arts model that was the preferred style for public structures in the early-Twentieth Century), three stories, an arched entrance that is not central, ornamental stone masonry – including a row of four Ionic columns that frame the two upper floors, which have pedimented windows – and tall, large arched windows on the first floor that allow an abundance of light into a relatively simple interior. The urban branches were located in densely populated Manhattan and in some neighborhoods in the Bronx. The Yorkville branch, with the symmetrical ordering of its components and restrained ornament, is one of the few and finest examples of the Palladian phase of Renaissance architecture found in New York City.
The building continues to serve its original purpose as the Yorkville Branch of the New York Public Library. The structure is a New York City individual landmark, and is listed on the State and National Registers of Historic Places.
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