Statement of Significance (as of designation - December 21, 1965):
Completed in 1911, the Library is a Beaux-Arts matsterpiece designed by architects Carrere and Hastings. On either side of a monumental stairway, two stone lions, sculpted by Edward Clark Potter, guard the main entrance to one of the world's great research institutions. The library was formed when several libraries consolidated at the turn of the 20th century. Generous bequests from New Yorkers over the years have endowed it with operating funds and with extensive and invaluable manuscript and rare book collections.