The Boston Public Library, established in 1848, was the first publicly supported municipal library in America. Today, the Library has over 6 million books and 11 million other items; serves more than 2 million people in its twenty-seven branch libraries around the city; and is one of only two public libraries in the country that are members of the Association of Research Libraries.

The central library facility consists of the McKim, Mead and White building opened in Copley Square in 1895, and a 1972 addition designed by Philip Johnson. The McKim building houses many works of art, including the murals by John Singer Sargent on the third floor.
The Triumph of Religion