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Lamont Library

Page history last edited by PBworks 16 years, 11 months ago

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Lamont Library first opened its doors in January of 1949. This library, the first undergraduate library specifically designed for use by undergraduates, began in 1938 as a collaborative project between Boston architect Henry Shepley and Keyes D. Metcalf, the Director of the Harvard University Library. Thomas W. Lamont, the library’s namesake and alum of the Harvard Class of 1892, provided a generous donation for the project.


Lamont Library was designed with state of the art heating, lighting and ventilation. Classrooms occupied the top floor, which has since been converted to the Language Resource Center. The original library design included alcoves and comfortable seating in the reading rooms, making the library a welcoming place for its undergraduate population. The inaugural collection included “80,000 volumes, which were transferred from Widener Library, the Boylston Hall reserve-book collections, and the Harvard Union Reading Room” (History). For more information on Widener Library, see the entry on Harry Elkins Widener Memorial Library.


Today, Lamont’s collection totals more than 200,000 volumes on topics in the humanities and social sciences. The current collection includes approximately 4,000 titles for leisure reading in the Henry Weston Farnsworth Room as well as 18,000 titles in its Morse Music & Media Collection, which includes scores, recordings, and visual media as well as books on music. According to the collection’s website, “The music materials focus on western music, world music, and jazz while the spoken word material includes poetry and plays. Visual media includes films, documentaries, opera, and musical performances that support and augment the undergraduate curriculum” (Lamont Library Collections).




"History." Harvard College Library. 12 September 2005. 28 April 2006. <http://hcl.harvard.edu/libraries/lamont/history.html>.


"Lamont Library." Harvard College Library. 28 April 2006. 28 April 2006. <http://hcl.harvard.edu/libraries/#lamont>.


"Lamont Library Collections." Harvard College Library. 7 September 2005. 28 April 2006. <http://hcl.harvard.edu/libraries/lamont/collections/index.html>.


"Location and Directions" Language Resource Center. 2006. 28 April 2006. <http://lrcnt.fas.harvard.edu/index/About/directions>.


Compiled by: Kristin J.


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