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New York Public Library opens to the public

New York Public Library opens to the public

23 May, 1911

The New York Public Library was dedicated on 23rd May 1911. After a ceremony which was presided over by President William Howard Taft and attended by 50,000 people, the library is opened to the public.

The library was opened with 1,000,000 volumes and costed $9 million.

A distinctive feature of the New York Public Library is the two statues of lions that “guard” the institution. These were named after the founders, John Astor and James Lenox (their first names substituted by the word “Leo”). At a later time, Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia changed the names of the lions to Patience and Fortitude.

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