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37 Congress Street. 


City Document. — No. 92. 

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In Board of Aldcrmeti, December 5, 1864. 
Laid on the table, and 1000 copies ordered to be printed. 

Attest : S. F. McCLEARY, City Clerk. 


Public Library, 3 December, 1864. 

His Honor Frederic W. Lincoln, Jr., Mayor of the City 

of Boston : — 

Sir : I have the honor to transmit to you, herewith, the 
Twelfth Annual Keport of the Trustees of the Public Library, 
prepared in obedience to the fourth section of the Ordinance 
relative to the Public Library, passed on the 20th of October, 

Very respectfully. 

Your obedient servant, 


Secretary of the Board of Trustees. 



In obedience to the fourth section of the Ordinance 
of 20th October, 1863, in rekition to the Public Li- 
brary, the Trustees submit to the City Council their 
Twelfth Annual 


The Ordinance directs that a Committee shall be 
annually appointed by the Trustees, consisting of five 
citizens at large with a member of the Board to act as 
chairman, who shall be invited to examine the Library 
and make report of its condition. The members of the 
Committee for the present year are Rev. H. W. Foote, 
Wm. F. Fowle, Esq., A. A. Gould, M. D., J, L. Lit- 
tle, Esq., and Thomas Minns, Esq.; the Hon. W. W. 
Clapp, Jr., acting as chairman. The Report of this 
Committee, with that of the Superintendent of the Li- 
brary, respectively marked A and B, is herewith sub- 

The Trustees refer with satisfaction to these reports 
as affording a comprehensive and detailed view of the 
present state of the institution, and as containing full 

6 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 92. 

information with respect to its several departments, its 
administration, and tlie practical results attained. They 
are not aware that further explanations are needed, on 
the part of the Trustees, in reference to any of these 
points. They will only remark, in general, that they 
believe no public library in the world could furnish an 
account of operations, in some respects so satisfactory, 
particularly in the number of persons resorting to it and 
enjoying its benefits. An average daily resort of about 
one thousand persons coming to the Library for liter- 
ary purposes, occasionally swelled to two thousand, in 
addition to those who come from mere curiosity, the 
Trustees take to be wholly without a parallel in the 
history of similar institutions. 

The most important occurrence of the year is the 
decease of the munificent benefactor of the Library, 
Joshua Bates, Esq., of London. On the receipt of the 
tidings of this event, resolutions were unanimously 
adopted by the Trustees, expressive of their feelings on 
the melancholy occasion, and of their respect for his 
memory. A copy of these resolutions, marked C, ac- 
companies this Report, but gratitude demands of the 
Trustees a more particular reference to the career and 
character of one justly recognized by them as the 
Founder of the Institution. 

Mr. Bates was born at Weymouth, in the neighbor- 
hood of Boston, in 1788, the only son of Col. Joshua 
Bates of that place. The family was among the first 
that emigrated from the parent country to New Eng- 
land, the name appearing among the settlers of Ply- 
mouth County as early as 1633 ; and it has held a 
respectable position in the community from that time 


to this. At the age of fifteen, Mr. Bates entered the 
counting-house of William R. Gray, Esq., the oldest 
son of the Hon. William Gray, well remembered as the 
first merchant of New England, in the last generation. 
Mr. Bates's aptitude for business and solid qualities of 
character soon attracted the notice and secured the 
confidence of Mr. Gray, Sen. After leaving the count- 
ing-house of Mr. William E. Gray, on becoming of 
age, Mr. Bates formed a connection in trade with a 
former shipmaster in Mr. William Gray's service. 
The commercial world was at that time in a very 
critical state. The British orders in Council, and the 
French Imperial decrees, had swept the neutral com- 
merce of the United States from the ocean, war was 
impending and was soon declared, and the house of 
Beckford and Bates, young beginners, was one of 
thousands that went down in the crash. None but 
the most solid fortunes were able to withstand the 
pressure of the times. 

This seemingly disastrous commencement of his ca- 
reer, was in reality the starting-point of his prosperous 
fortunes. It in no degree impaired Mr. Gray's con- 
fidence either in his intelligence or probity, and he was 
before long sent by him to Europe, as his general 
agent, for the superintendence of his aff'airs. Mr. Gray 
was at that time the largest ship-owner in the country, 
having usually between thirty and forty square-rigged 
vessels afloat. It will readily be seen that the trust re- 
posed in his agent, not yet thirty years of age, was of 
the most onerous and responsible character. Fixing 
his head-quarters at London, he visited the ports of the 
Continent, whenever the arrival of Mr. Gray's vessels 

g CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 92. 

required his presence. It need hardly be said, that 
nothing short of great general intelligence and un- 
usual business capacity would have been adequate to 
the management of affairs so extensive and compli- 
cated, to the satisfaction of his employer. 

It was on a visit to Havre, to superintend the dis- 
posal of two cargoes of cotton, that an incident took 
place, which gave a new direction and a decisive shape 
to Mr. Bates's career. It is worthy to be placed on 
record, as a very instructive example of the importance 
of such demeanor and conduct, on the part of those en- 
tering life, as are calculated at once to inspire the con- 
fidence of persons more advanced in years. Having 
applied to an American house at Havre, to know if 
they would make any deduction from the usual com- 
mission on the consignment of the expected cargoes, 
Mr. Bates was answered in the negative. He then 
went, with the same application, to the Havre branch 
of the house of Hope & Co. There his appearance and 
conversation produced so favorable an impression, that 
a considerable reduction of the usual commission was 
promised, on condition that Mr. Bates would remain 
and give his personal aid in the disposal of the cotton. 
After this agreement was entered into, Mr. Bates stated 
that he had demanded the reduction from no selfish 
motive, as he was compensated by a fixed salary, and 
that all the benefit of the abatement would accrue to 
Mr. Gray. The heads of the house, having supposed 
that he was bargaining for himself, were of course 
most favorably impressed with the integrity of the 
agent, in appropriating to the benefit of his prin- 
cipal, what, with a less scrupulous morality, he could 


— and they, perhaps, had thought he would — re- 
tain for himself. In the course of the conversation 
he had incidentally remarked, that, in the interval be- 
fore the arrival of the vessels, he should like to pass a 
few days at Paris. 

There was present in the counting-room, during the 
interview, a person advanced in years, who, though 
apparently absorbed in reading a newspaper, had in 
reality listened to the conversation. It was M. Peter 
Caesar Labouchere, related by marriage to the Baring 
family, and the senior member of the great house of 
Hope & Co., at Amsterdam. Highly pleased with 
the appearance and demeanor of Mr. Bates, who 
had expressed a wish to visit Paris, whither he 
was himself going, M. Labouchere proposed to him to 
take a seat in his post-chaise. The three days' journey 
afforded ample opportunity for cultivating the acquaint- 
ance so auspiciously commenced between the veteran 
merchant and the young American ; and when they 
parted in Paris, M. Labouchere said to Mr. Bates, that 
if, at any future time, he found himself in need of 
counsel or aid, they should not be wanting. An as- 
surance like this, made by the head of one of the 
first commercial hpuses in Europe, was well cal- 
culated to inspire the person to whom it was addressed 
with a generous ambition, and lofty views of success in 
life. It also proves, in a very striking manner, that 
Mr. Bates must, in his manners and conversation, have 
carried with him an all-powerful letter of recom- 

An opportunity soon occurred of putting the sin- 


10 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 02. 

cciity of !M. Labouchere's offers to the test. The 
fiiihire of Mi\ Samuel Williams, the wealthy American 
banker and merchant, in London, in 1826, created a 
very desirable opening for any successor possessed of 
adequate capital. Mr. Bates felt himself competent to 
the place in every other respect, and wrote to M. 
Labouchere for his counsel, as to the expediency of at- 
tempting to take advantage of this occurrence. M. 
Labouchere advised him to await awhile the develop- 
ment of affairs, but, in order to enable him to take ad- 
vantage of any contingency, placed to his credit with 
the Barings, the sum of twenty thousand pounds. A 
partnership was soon formed between Mr. John Bar- 
ing (the son of Sir Thomas) and Mr. Bates, and the 
American business passed rapidly into their hands. 
This connection lasted two years, when Mr. John 
Baring and Mr. Bates were admitted as partners to the 
house of Baring Bros. & Co., of which in the course 
of time Mr. Bates became the senior member, and 
in which he acquired. his colossal fortune. 

The importance of this connection in the commer- 
cial world needs no comment. It may be sufficient to 
say, that Mr. Bates sustained himself, in the new and 
responsible position, to the entire satisfaction of his 
associates, and eminently to the advantage of his 
countrymen having business relations abroad. His sa- 
gacious foresight contributed largely to carry the house 
triumphantly through the crisis of 1837; and on more 
than one important occasion he was examined by par- 
liamentary committees. To enumerate his acts of kind- 
ness to individuals would be to repeat the names of a 


very considerable number of the American travellers in 
Europe. The house of the Barings having been the 
bankers of the United States from the organization of 
the Government, with the exception of a short period 
under Presidents Jackson and Van Buren, the judg- 
ment of Mr, Bates, as an intelligent and patriotic 
American citizen, was of course highly important, in 
conducting the correspondence of the house with the 

A full biographical memoir of Mr. Bates would form 
a very instructive work for young men entering on a 
business life, but would greatly exceed the limits of 
this Report. To one important incident of a public na- 
ture, allusion may properly be made. The diplomatic 
intercourse between the governments of the United 
States and Great Britian, since the peace of 1815, had 
become encumbered with a multitude of pecuniary 
claims of the citizens of either country against the 
government of the other. Many of these were of a 
complicated character. As it was of course impossible 
to subject them to legal adjudication, they formed a 
constant source of disagreement, and often of unpleas- 
ant correspondence, between the two governments, 
usually with no ofher result than that each successive 
minister at London and Washington, was required to 
take up and study the various questions de novo, gen- 
erally leaving them, where they were left by his prede- 
cessor. In the last winter of Mr. Fillmore's administra- 
tion, a movement was made, in the Department of State, 
to remedy this evil. The American minister in Lon- 
don (Mr. Joseph K. Ingersoll) was instructed to propose 
a joint commission for a settlement of all these claims. 

12 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 'J2. 

This overture was readily embraced by Great Britain, 
and a convention was promptly negotiated. It pro- 
vided for the appointment of a commissioner and agent 
on each side, and for the choice of an umpire to decide 
the questions on which the commissioners might dis- 
agree. Ex-President Van Buren, then in Florence, 
was, in the first instance, selected as umpire, and he 
having declined the appointment, the choice fell on 
Mr. Bates. 

The claims submitted to the commissioners were 
over one hundred in number. Many of them required 
but little investigation and were soon disposed of, while 
others, though clear as to principles, were rendered 
doubtful and difficult by conflicting and uncertain tes- 
timony. A third class involved important questions of 
international law, and had been strenuously contested 
between the two governments for nearly thirty years. 
The amount claimed ran into the millions, but was re- 
duced by the awards to about $ 600,000, which was 
about equally divided between the two countries. It 
devolved upon Mr. Bates as umpire to decide the most 
difficult cases, and this delicate office was performed by 
him, it is believed, to the satisfaction of both govern- 
ments. Some of his decisions contain compendious 
discussions of important questions in the law of na- 
tions, and show the extent, to which a clear judgment, 
aided by practical knowledge of aff'airs, though without 
professional training, may be trusted for a sound opin- 
ion even on questions that involve theoretical diffi- 

His personal character, wealth, and connection with 
the house of the Barings (of which the senior mem- 


ber, Mr. Alexander Baring, was raised to the peerage 
as Lord Ashburton, in 1835) gave Mr. Bates facility of 
access to the highest circles of English society. He 
had, however, as little leisure as taste for fashionable 
life, and his habits and manners retained unimpaired 
the simplicity of his earlier fortunes. He greatly rel- 
ished the intercourse of an intelligent select circle, and 
was never happier than in dispensing a generous hos- 
pitality alike to natives and foreigners. Among his 
near neighbors, at his country house at East Sheen, was 
Samuel Taylor Coleridge, who dehghted to bring his 
lofty and often paradoxical generalizations to the 
touchstone of Mr. Bates's sterling common sense and 
practical discernment. The present Emperor of the 
French, during his exile in London, was much in the 
intimacy of Mr. Bates, who entertained a very favorable 
opinion of the future sovereign, not yet clothed with the 
prestige of success. It is equally to the credit of Louis 
Napoleon that, in the apogee of his fortunes, he won 
the esteem of a man like Mr. Bates, and that their 
friendly relations survived his elevation to the throne. 

A great sorrow clouded his domestic relations in 
early life. His only son, while passing the holidays 
with a schoolmate in the country, was killed by the ac- 
cidental discharge of his companion's gun. Mr. Bates's 
only daughter, the wife of Mr. Sylvain Van de Weyer, 
for many years and still the Belgian Minister in Lon- 
do^, survives her father. 

Reflecting honor as a countryman on his native State, 
and upon this community in which he passed his early 
years, it is nevertheless as the founder of the Public 

14 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 92. 

Library, that Mr. Bates possesses his highest title to the 
grateful remembrance of the citizens of Boston. 

It would not probably be easy to fix a date to the 
first suggestion of a public library in this city. It was 
an idea sure to present itself to the minds of reflecting 
persons, with the increase of population and wealth, 
and it was a subject of serious consideration in public- 
spirited circles above thirty years ago. In 1843, in re- 
turn for a present of books, which had been sent from 
Boston to the Municipal Council of Paris, a number of 
valuable works were received from that distinguished 
body, through M. Vattemare, in pursuance of his sys- 
tem of international exchanges. From that time up 
to the year 1852 committees on the subject of a public 
library were appointed, and donations of books and 
money made and promised by several individuals, which 
resulted in the collection of a moderate number of vol- 
umes deposited in an upper room in the City Hall. 
These books were not allowed to circulate among the 
citizens at large, and little use was made of them on 
the premises. 

In February, 1852, the attention of the City Govern- 
ment w^as called to the subject by a special message 
from Mayor Seaver. This message was referred to the 
Committee 'on the Library, who, on the 29th of April, 
submitted a Report, in conformity with the recommen- 
dations of the Mayor. A Librarian and Board of Trus- 
tees were now elected, and the Trustees were " re- 
quested to report to the City Council upon the objects 
to be attained by the establishment of a public library, 
and the means of effecting them." The report of this 
Committee was made on the 6th of July, and in Au- 


gust following, the rooms on the ground floor of the 
Adams School-house, in Mason Street, were granted for 
the . use of the embryo institution. The collection of 
books in the possession of the city, was, however, as 
yet too inconsiderable to make it worth while to re- 
move it from the City Hall, and open it to the public 

A copy of the Report just mentioned was trans- 
mitted with other city documents to the House of the 
Barings, with whom the City Government was then 
negotiating the water-loan, and it attracted the notice 
of Mr. Bates. He saw in it the opening for the foun- 
dation of a public library in the City of Boston on prin- 
ciples somewhat novel, and which would afl'ord to 
young men those means and opportunities for improv- 
ing their minds and passing their leisure hours profit- 
ably, of which he had himself sorely felt the want in 
his youth. He accordingly, by a letter addressed to 
the Mayor, of the 1st of October, 1852, announced his 
willingness to make a donation, which would enable 
the city " to establish the library at once." It was in 
the following terms. 

London, 1 Oct. 1852. 
" Dear Sir : I am indebted to you for a copy of the Report 
of the Trustees of the Public Library for the City of Boston, 
which I have perused with great interest, being impressed with 
the importance to rising and future generations of such a Li- 
brary as is recommended ; and while I am sure that, in a liberal 
and wealthy community like that of Boston, there will be no 
want of funds to carry out the recommendations of the Trustees, 
it may accelerate its accomplishment and establish the Library at 
once, on a scale to do credit to the city, if I am allowed to pay 

16 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 92. 

for the books required, which I am quite willing to do, — leav- 
ing to the city to provide the building and take care of the ex- 

The only condition that I ask is, that the building shall be 
such as to be an ornament to the city, — that there shall be a 
room for one hundred to one hundred and fifty persons to sit at 
reading-tables, — that it shall be perfectly free to all, with no 
other restrictions than may be necessary for the preservation of 
the books. What the building may cost, I am unable to es- 
timate, but the books, counting additions during my lifetime, — 
I estimate at $ 50,000, which I shall gladly contribute, and 
consider it, but a small return for the many acts of confi- 
dence and kindness which I have received from my many 
friends in your city. 

Believe me. Dear Sir, very truly yours, 

BenjajVIIN Seaver, Esq., Mayor of the City of Boston. 

This offer was gratefully accepted by the City Gov- 
ernment, and Mr. Bates, having been requested by the 
Trustees to allow his generous donation to be funded, 
and the interest only to be expended in the purchase of 
books of permanent value, cheerfully gave his consent 
to this arrangement, and by a letter of the 10th March, 
1853, authorized the Mayor to draw upon him for 

The requisite preparations being completed, the 
Reading Room was opened in Mason Street, in March, 
1854 ; and in a few weeks the Library, with a printed 
Catalogue, was opened for the circulation of books. 

These arrangements were all understood to be tem- 
porary and provisional. On the 27th Nov. 1855, the 
City Council adopted an Ordinance, creating a Board of 


Commissioners for the erection of a library building in 
Boylston Street, and on receiving information that it 
was in satisfactory progress, Mr. Bates, by a letter of 
the 6th Sept. 1855, announced his intention, in addi- 
tion to his former donation, " to purchase and present to 
the city a considerable number of books in trust," for 
the purposes of the Public Library. The intended 
amount of this second donation was not indicated, but it 
actually reached the sum of $ 50,000. The corner-stone 
of the new building was laid on the 1 7th of September, 
1855, and on the same day and month of the year 
1858, the Eeading Room was opened in it. On the 17th 
of December following, the Library was opened for use, 
with a Catalogue only of the Lower Hall. The formal 
dedication of the edifice took place on the first of Jan- 
uary, 1858, and in July, 1861, the Catalogue of the 
books in the Upper Hall — a work of immense labor 
— being completed, the entire Library was opened to 
the public. 

It is not the purpose of the foregoing sketch to nar- 
rate in full the history of the Library, which is recorded 
in greater detail in the Appendix to the account of the 
Dedication. It is here intended only to set forth Mr. 
Bates's connection with the establishment of the Institu- 
tion. From the facts stated it will be seen, that his 
original endowment of $50,000, gave the first effective 
impulse to the foundation of the Library on its present 
broad basis, and, with his second donation to the same 
amount, so far transcends in importance all earlier gifts 
of books or money, however liberal, as to entitle him to 
be considered the Founder of the Institution. As such 
the Trustees have recognized him, in their resolution 

18 CITV l)OCUMKx\T, — No. 92. 

above referred to, unanimously adopted on receiving 
information of his decease, and as such he will be 
gratefully remembered by the citizens of Boston in all 
coming time. 

In concluding this Report, the Trustees are happy in 
being able again to bear witness to the diligence and 
fidelity of those connected with the administration of 
the Library. It will be readily inferred from the num- 
ber of those who visit the Institution, of the books bor- 
rowed and returned, and of the new volumes added to 
the Library, that a vast amount of work is daily per- 
formed within its walls. The Trustees are satisfied 
that in no public institution is it performed with 
greater punctuality and cheerfulness, or with more 
satisfactory results.* 

Respectfully submitted by 


W. W. CLAPP, Jr., 

Public Library, November 26, 1864. 

* When this Report was prepared, the interesting pamphlet containing the 
" Tribute to Joshua Bates by Boston merchants," had not been seen by the 


The Committee of Examination, appointed to make the 
Annual Examination of the Library, have attended to a duty 
which it is pleasant to discharge, there being so many evidences 
of the good which the institution is accomplishing under the 
guidance of gentlemen who, appreciating the liberality of 
the City Council, and the responsibility reposed in them by 
beneficent donoi's, labor with unceasing zeal to build up, for the 
benefit of the present and future generations, this great temple 
of literary culture and mental improvement. 

The statistics furnished by the Superintendent, supply us 
with the gratifying fact that, notwithstanding the unsettled con- 
dition of the public mind, incidental to civil war, the demands 
upon the Library are yearly increasing ; many, no doubt, finding 
on its shelves the means of alleviating those pangs which are 
caused by the absence in the field, of husbands, brothers, and 
sons. Each day some gratifying incident occurs, illustrating 
the great power for good which this Library is accomplishing ; 
and when it is known that on the average nearly a thousand per- 
sons each day enter its portals, to take out or consult books, or 
read the periodicals, it is evident that the institution is already 
accomplishing a mission, and has to-day attained to a position of 
usefulness which was not anticipated at so early a date in its 
history by those most sanguine at its inauguration. We may 
congratulate the city upon the freedom which is afforded to 
every resident to enjoy, to the fullest extent, the advantages 
which are sought for within its walls ; for no public library, with- 
in our knowledge, is opened to applicants more hours in the day, 

20 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 92. 

or lias attained to so wide a popularity among those who fre- 
([ucnt it. The system of obtaining books is simple, and but 
little time is required to secure the volume desired. The Read- 
ing Room, which is one of the most attractive departments, is 
appreciated, affording to the poorest artisan the opportunity, 
which would otherwise be confined to the rich, to consult the 
weekly and monthly record, foreign and domestic, of the pro- 
gress making in arts, sciences, and manufactures ; often en- 
abling an humble mechanic to obtain information of some new 
discovery in mechanics, or some new principle applicable 
to the industrial pursuit in which he is engaged, before it has at- 
tracted the attention of his employer. The current intelligence 
of the day flows into the minds of the people, giving new im- 
pulses to the brain and quickening the best energies of men ; and 
it is, therefore, on this account, that we recommend that the 
Reading Room should be made the receptacle of all magazines, 
at home and abroad, which may prove sources of literary enter- 
tainment, or, what is still more valuable, contribute to the well- 
being of the laboring classes, by bringing constantly before them 
the news which has a direct bearing upon the avocations in 
which they are engaged. 

There is, perhaps, an erroneous impression, too prevalent in 
our community, that there is necessarily an incompatibility in 
creating a Library of Reference, and in making a collection of 
books which shall be valuable to scholars, and at the same time 
giving to the Library that class of books termed " popular," 
which are supposed to be most in demand. In the manage- 
ment of this Library, a wise course has been pursued ; for, while 
it has been the aim of the Trustees to meet the demand for 
popular books, they have not omitted to place on its shelves 
volumes which give it a paramount and ever-increasing influ- 
ence. The beneficence of its donors enables the Trustees to 
seek in every market of the world those volumes which are 
considered standard authority upon all subjects ; while the gifts 
of friends are daily enriching its Catalogue with volumes that. 


within a few years, will only be found within the walls of this 
and similar institutions. The Library is not so rich in some de- 
partments as might be wished ; but when we remember its small 
beginning, and look at what has already been accomplished, we 
have abundant assurance that it only requires time to make 
good all present defects. The Trustees have, indeed, made most 
excellent use of the resources at their command ; but we cannot 
forbear expressing the hope that the liberality of the city, or of 
public-spirited individuals, may enable them to procure at an early 
day an ample collection of those books in the department of 
bibliography, greatly needed by the guardians of the Library 
to aid them in their official labors. 

We find much to commend in the system adopted for receiv- 
ing, recording, and cataloguing the books which are purchased 
for the Library ; and it is with pleasure that we approve the steps 
now taken, to open in proper form, a set of books, giving with 
accuracy the financial condition of the various funds. 

The cleanliness which marks every department, from cellar to 
attic, reflects credit upon the janitor. We trust that, at no very 
distant day, the much-needed improvement may be made of 
substituting steam-heating apparatus for the present coal fur- 
naces, the advantages being very manifest in a building devoted 
to such purposes as this. 

Congratulating the City Council upon the gentlemen and 
ladies, who so faithfully fulfil their important duties, that any 
change in any of the heads M^ould be an almost irreparable loss, 
we respectfully submit this Keport. 

W. W. CLAPP, Jr., Chairman, 






Public Library, November 11, 1864. 


To THE Trustees of the Public Library of the City 
OF Boston : — 

Gentlemen : In compliance with a requirement of the 
* ' By-Laws relative to the Trustees and Officers of the Public 
Library," I have the honor to present to you a Report upon 
the condition and increase of the Library during the year 
ending the first of September, 1864. 

I am happy and proud to be able, this year as last, to preface 
the details which it is my duty to present, with the general state- 
ment, that during the continuance of the vast national struggle 
upon which this city has so nobly lavished her choicest gifts, 
there has been no diminution of interest in the Public Library, 
but on the other hand progress, at an increasing rate, in all 
that pertains to its material prosperity and its educational use- 


During the year, 6,226 books, 2,939 pamphlets, 367 maps and 
charts, 887 separate papers, 29 engravings, and a lithographic 
stone, containing designs relating to the life of Franklin, have 
been added to the Library. 

Of these, 1,081 books, 2,772 pamphlets, 224 maps, and all 
the other articles enumerated, are due to the liberality of 219 
individuals and societies. A list of the donors Is appended to 
this Report, and marked AA. 


The number of books purchased during the year, is 5,145. 
This is above the average for former years. 

Among the donations, I would especially mention the con- 
tinuation of the magnificent and important work often alluded 
to in former Reports, the specifications and drawings of English 
patents, published and presented by the Commissioners of Patents 
of Great Britain ; two hundred and five charts, from the U. S. 
Coast Survey, the value and importance of which have been 
enhanced to us by the care of the Superintendent, Dr. Bache, 
and the assistant, Mr. Hilgard, in completing our set, and fur- 
nishing us with interesting notes relative to the details of this 
great national work ; the donation of pamphlets, some of which 
are rare and curious, by Mrs. Lunt, of Quincy ; and, particularly, 
a unique and valuable collection of books, 1 60 in number, rela- 
tive to the Provencal language Snd literature, presented by Mr. 
Ticknor. This collection, besides the scarce and costly works of 
Bastero, Gatien-Arnould, and others, equally rare, comprises 74 
volumes of the < ' Recueil " of the ' ' Academic des jeux floraux " 
at Toulouse, published between the years 1732 and 1863. 
This publication was commenced in 1696, and has been contin- 
ued (generally one volume a year), but with some interrup- 
tions, till the present time. So large apart of a complete set it 
is extremely rare to meet with in any library. Indeed, I can 
find no record of another set as full. 


The Library contains at present, — 

Books in the Upper Hall (henceforward, by order of the Trus- 
tees, to be known and designated as Bates 
Hall, in honor of the founder of the Li- 
brary), • 93,342 volumes 

In the Lower Hall, .... 23,592 «' 

Total, . . . . . 116,934 

24 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 92. 

These are all bound volumes, but above 2,000 of them are 
pamphlets of consequence, sei)arately bound, and 5,11G are du- 
plicates and odd volumes, placed by themselves, to be exchanged 
or sold. 

Besides these, the Library possesses a large number of unbound 
pamphlets. According to the enumeration continued from year 
to vear, after deducting those separately bound, the present col- 
lection numbers 31,837. Many of these are odd numbers of 
periodicals, and numerous copies of the same publications. 
The superfluous copies have been taken out and assorted, and the 
remainder are conveniently arranged, and are made available by 
an alphabetical list on slips, upon each of which the location of 
the pamphlet is noted, so that it can be readily found. Many 
of them are duplicates of pamphlets already bound, because they 
are important, and placed as books in the Library. More than 
1,500 of the most valuable historical and biographical pamphlets, 
and vrorks of Boston authors , have during the year been selected 
out to be separately bound. 

Of the duplicates reported last year, several hundred have 
been exchanged for valuable works, which have been credited to 
the donors of the books disposed of. Some three hundred du- 
plicates have also been added to the list. But the aggregate 
reported this year is smaller than that of the last year. A list 
of the duplicates has been printed, not including, however, the 
imperfect sets of periodicals, and the odd volumes. Opportuni- 
ties are frequently occurring for exchanges of a few volumes at 
a time, but it is difficult to dispose of large numbers of books in 
this way. Few libraries possess among their duplicates any 
considerable number of books not already on our shelves. The 
process of negotiation, of assigning to donors books of equal 
value with those presented by them, and of making the requisite 
entries in our Accessions Catalogue, is a slow one, and, during 
the progress of printing the large Supplement, now in press, it 
is almost impossible to bestow upon a system of exchanges the 
requisite amount of labor. The books, however, though not 


accomplishing their legitimate purpose of usefulness, are not at 
present troublesome. We have shelf-room for them. They 
are so placed that any one of them can readily be found, and the 
printed list affords every needed facility for disposing of them as 
opportunities may occur. 

Books which are duplicates of those abeady in the Library 
are constantly presented ; generally, of late, with the understand- 
ing that they may be disposed of in any way most advanta- 
geous to the institution. If sold, the proceeds would have to be 
paid into the City Treasury, and could not be employed in pro- 
curing other books to be credited to the donors. In view of the 
difficulties of making exchanges, and the constant accumulation 
of books which it is not expedient to retain, I would suggest the 
propriety of requesting from the City Government permission to 
sell, by private sale or by auction, books not needed, and to use 
the money thus obtained in purchasing other books to be credit- 
ed to the persons through whose liberality these purchases have 
been made. This seems but justice to the original liberal do- 

Besides the books and pamphlets Included in the preceding 
statements, and a number of engravings, broadsides, and other 
articles, the Library contains about 500 maps, most of which are 
modern and important. 


During the year, 4,758 applications for cards to take out 
books have been answered, making the whole number of per- 
sons who have signed the promise to obey the rules of the Li- 
brary, and who have thus acquired the right to enjoy its privileges, 
35,239. The number of new signatures is larger than in any 
year since I860. 

The number of lendings of books for home use was 184,035, 
a number considerably larger than in any preceding year. The 
number lent from the Upper, or Bates Hall, was 7,468 against 

26 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 92. 

5,222 for last year. The number used in the Hall, 11,057, 
against 7,124, last year. It should be stated, however, that the 
statistics of last year covered a period of only 10 months. The 
Reading Room has been frequented as heretofore. 

The average daily circulation throughout the year was 664 
.34. The largest reported any previous year vs^as 643.56. The 
largest circulation in one day was 1,424 on the 27th of Feb- 
ruary. This is larger than on any preceding day in the history 
of the Library, except the 1st of March, 1862, when 1,517 
books were given out; and the 7th of February, 1863, when 
1,534 lendings were reported. 

There were, on an average, throughout the year, 302 daily 
visitors in the Reading Room, and 202 in Bates Hall, making, 
with those who came to borrow books for home use, an average 
daily number of 1,128 frequenters of the Library. On some 
days it has been ascertained that more than two thousand persons 
have come to the Library for literary purposes, besides those 
who came from mere curiosity. 

These results are truly gratifying. They show that the suc- 
cess of the Library is not attributable to transient interest in a 
new experiment, but to the fact that it was founded upon a 
widely felt need of such a resource for general popular educa- 
tion and culture. 

The following statement shows the relative use of different 
classes of books in Bates Hall, during the year : — 

English History and Literature . 


per cent. 

Useful Arts and Fine Arts 

. 12 

Theology and Ethics 


American History and Literature . 

. 8h 

French " " . . 


Periodicals ...... 


Mathematical and Physical Sciences . 


Medicine ...... 


General History .... 


(C (t 


Natural Histoiy • .... 4 per cent. 

Greek and Latin Classics . . . 82 " " 

Oriental History and Literature . . . 3i " " 

Bibliography . . . . . . 3 *' " 

Italian History and Literature ... 2^ 
German " " . . 2 

Law 2 

Transactions of Learned Societies . . 1^ 

Miscellaneous ...... f 


The number of books reported as missing from the Lower 
Hall, is 432. I regret to notice that this is above the average 
of former years. Of the 234 reported as missing last year, 
39 have been regained. The amount collected in fines is 

In examining the collections in Bates Hall, 15 books were 
found to be missing from their places, and they have not yet 
been accounted for. Only two of them had been charged to 
visitors during the year. The annual scrutiny of the Library 
is very close and careful, and it seems scarcely possible that a 
loss can occur without being noticed. Still, books are occa- 
sionally misplaced and forced in behind others, where they re- 
main a longer or shorter period undiscovered. Most of the 
books now missing are, it is believed, thus misplaced. The ab- 
sence of a few of them, however, cannot well be accounted for 
in this way, and leads to painful suspicions. The public are 
excluded from the alcoves, and no one has been admitted to 
them except under circumstances which seem to preclude the 
possibility of theft. It is true that the books missing are none 
of them rare, or of much pecuniary value, but it is very un- 
satisfactory, under the strict police of this Hall, to lose a single 
book, however unimportant it may be. 

The books lent from this Hall have almost without exception 

28 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 92. 

been used w'ltli eare, and the whole collection is in excellent 

I regret to say, that the appearance of the books in the Low- 
er Hall does not show the improvement I had hoped for, in the 
carefulness of their treatment by borrowers. I apprehend 
that the time may come when it will be necessary to make more 
stringent regulations for the distribution of the books, and to 
adopt some measures for detecting those persons who deface 
and mutilate this portion of the public property. 

The real cost to the city of replacing the books lost and ren- 
dered unfit for use is not indeed large, and almost any restric- 
tions will, it has been feared, operate to the disadvantage of the 
innocent, and of many for whose benefit it is most desirable to 
care. Still, the continuance of discreditable practices on the 
part of borrowers, and their full extent should not be concealed, 
nor should it be supposed that the evil is irremediable. 

I have thought it might be well to employ for a time, a suffi- 
cient number of persons, to examine carefully in some one al- 
cove selected for the trial, every book, both before it is lent out, 
and after it is returned, till some of the borrowers who persist 
in disregarding their own honor and the public rights, are dis- 
covered. I am not prepared to recommend this measure at 
present, but I have deemed it my duty again to call attention 
thus formally and emphatically to the subject, in the hope that 
the necessity of any measure of the kind suggested, may yet be 


A Supplement to the Index of the Lower Hall has been 
printed, containing the additions for the year. A new edition 
of the Index to the Upper, or Bates Hall, has also been printed 
from the original stereotype plates. 

The new Supplement for this Hall is now in the press. The 
printing, owing to various unavoidable delays, was at first very 
slow, but it is now proceeding more rapidly. This Supple- 


ment will be more than half as large as the large original Index. 
Numerous additions have been made to it since the printing was 
commenced. More than 1,500 pamphlets, which have been se- 
lected from the mass, as important enough to be bound, are re- 
corded in this Index. These comprise all we possess of tracts 
published by Boston authors, or relating to the affairs of the 

When this Supplement is finished the whole Library, both in 
the Bates and Lower Halls, except books that may be received 
during the progress of the printing, will be entered in the 
printed Index. This is very important for the public, and for 
the free use of the Library. But the Index to the Lower Hall 
will remain in the original publication of 1858, and no less than 
seven Supplements to it. It seems necessary that these should 
be combined in one alphabet, and this task should be commenced 
as soon as possible after the publication of the large Supplement 
for Bates Hall. The public convenience requires it. 

It is unnecessary perhaps to add, that the Card Catalogue, 
which is the basis of the printed Index, and of what is most 
important in the administration of the Library, has been regular- 
ly kept up to the last accessions ; so also have the Accessions 
Catalogue, and Shelf-lists. In short, no arrears in any part of 
the library- work have been allowed to accumulate. 


It is very seldom that an important establishment of any 
kind rises in a few years from small beginnings to a magnitude 
like that of the Public Library, without finding it indispensable 
to revise some of its early arrangements, or even to adopt entire- 
ly new systems of administration. The great and rapid develop- 
ment of this institution was, however, anticipated from the first, 
and most of the plans were wisely made, as far as was possible, 
so as to be capable of unlimited expansion. The importance 
of this forecast can hardly be over-estimated. 

30 CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 92. 

In consequence of the great increase of work in many 
branches of the service, it has been found necessary during the 
last year, to make a new division of labor, but it has been a 
mere change in administrative details, and does not involve any 
substantial modifications of plans of organization. 

The system of keeping the accounts has, however, long been 
found ill-suited to furnish the information often suddenly needed. 
The whole plan has, therefore, been remodelled. It is believed 
that the one now adopted will be found in every way convenient 
and satisfactory, and that it will meet the demands of the in- 
stitution in its Ifirgest expansion. 

Throughout the year the persons employed under my direc- 
tion have faithfully and with zealous interest performed the 
labors assigned to them, the amount of which can only be fully 
appreciated by those, who, having had experience of such work, 
can examine the results here attained. 

I will only add, in conclusion, that the good order which has 
characterized the institution from the first, has in no case been 
interrupted during the last year. Among the throngs who dally 
visit the Library, no cases of wanton injury or Intentional rude- 
ness have occurred, — no avoidable noise even, except very rare- 
ly an unconscious loudness of voice on the part of a visitor 
has been heard. Entire stillness is of course Impossible In 
large halls with marble floors, filled often with deeply interested 
visitors, and where the business of delivering and receiving 
books, of answering inquiries, and of performing many of the 
practical operations of the Library, must be continually con- 

The usual statement of accounts Is appended to this Report, 
and marked BB. 

Respectfully submitted. 

CHARLES C. JEWETT, Superintendent. 
Public Library, 18 October, 1864. 



Bates, Joshua, London . . . . . $ 50,000 

Bigelow, Hon. John P. .... 1,000 

Franklin Club . - . . . "^ . . . 1,000 

Lawrence, Hon. Abbott .... 10,000 

Phillips, Hon. Jonathan 30,000 

Townsend, Mary P 4,000 

The interest of these donations, with the exception of that of 
the Townsend Fund, (which is invested in a mortgage at six 
per cent.,) has been paid in gold at the rate of five per cent, 
per annum. 

Abbott, Ezra, 

Adams, Rev. N., D. D., 

Adams, Mrs. Sarah M., 

Agassiz, L., Prof., Cambridge, 

Albany Female Academy, 

Albany Young Men's Association, 

Allan, George H., 

Allen, Joseph H., 

American Antiquarian Society, Worcester, 

American Anti-slavery Society, 

American Baptist Missionary Union, 

American Education Society, 

American Philosophical Society, Philadelphia, 

American Unitarian Association, 

Anonymous, 1 Pap 

Vols. Pamphs. 





















Vols. Pamphs. 

Appleton, ^Y. S., 

Atkinson, Edward, 

Atwood, Charles, 

Avery, Abraham, 

Balfour, David M., 

Barnard, Hon. Henry, Hartford, 

Barnard, James M., 6 Papers. 

Bartlett, Hon. J. R., Providence, 

Bates, Samuel P., Harrisburg, Pa., 

Biddeford Public Library, 

Black, James, Lancaster, Pa., 

Boston, City of, 

Boston Athenreum, 

Boston Gas Light Company, 

Boston Provident Association, 

Bogart, W. H., 

Bond, George P., 

Bowdltch, H. L, M. D., 

Bowditch Library, 

Bradlee, Pev. Caleb Davis, 

Buckingham, Joseph T., Sons of. 

Burgess, Rev. Ebenezer, 

Burnham,T. O. H. P., 

Burroughs, Rev. Henry, 

Butler Hospital for the Insane, Providence, 

California, Adjutant-General of, 

Cama, M. H., 

Capen, John, 

Capen, Mrs. Lemuel, 

Cavalcante, S. Albuquerque, through J. McMullen, 

Chambers, George, E., Philadelphia, 

Charlestown Public Library, 

Child, Henry Dorr, 8 Maps. 

Christ Church, Longwood, 

Christern, F. W., New York, 

Cincinnati Mercantile Library Association, 

Clark, Roxanna M., 

Cleveland, Charles D., 

Coggeshall, W. T., 

CoTcord, S. M.,. 

Congregational Board of Publication, 

















Vols. Paniph 

Coxe, Samuel N., 


Cozzens, William C, 


Cranch, William G., Washington, 

D. C, 


Curtis, Cynthia, 


Curtis, Thomas B., 


Daley, Hon. C. P., New York, 



Dana, R. H., Jr., 


De Vries, Ibarra & Co.-, 


Dorr, James A., New York, 


Draper, Warren F., Andover, 


Dyer, Thomas S., 


Edinburgh Royal Society, 


Essex Institute, Salem, 



Everett, Hon. Edward, 



Farwell, J. E. & Co., 


Foley, William J., 



Foster, Hon. L. S., 


Friese, Frederick, 


Fuller, F., 



Fuller, R. F., 


Garrison, Wendell Phillips, 


Gay, Mrs. George, 





Goldsmith, Seth, 


Great Britain. Commissioners of Patents, 


Green, Samuel A., M. D., 


Greenouo-h, W". W., 

302 Papers. 



Hague, William, D. D., 


Hale, George S., 

1 ancient Paper. 

Hall, Charles B., 


Hall, W. W.,M. D., 


Harvard Colleoe, Cambridge, 


Haskins, Rev.^D. G., 


Hasted, Frederick, 



Hilgard, J. E., Washington, D. C 

• > 


Holland, Rev. F. W., 


Homans, J. Smith, New York, 



Hooper, Hon. Samuel, 


Huntington, Rev. F. D., 


Indiana, Adjutant-General of, 


International Exchange, 


Ives, William J., Buffalo, 





Kentucky, Adjutant-General of, 
Ladrcyt, E. jNL, 
Langworthy, Rev. Isaac P., 

Lawrence, Abbott, 10 Papers. 

Lawrence, T. B., 1 Map. 

London, Corporation of, 
London. Koyal Society, 
London. Koyal Astronomical Society, 
London. Royal Geographical Society, 
Loring, Charles G., 
Loring, F. W., 
Loring, J. Spear, 
Lowell, City of, 
Lowell City Library, 
Lunt, Mrs. William P., Quincy, 
McAlvin, John, 
McCleary, Samuel F., 
Manchester Free Library, 
Massachusetts, State of, 
Massachusetts Sabbath School Society, 
Massachusetts Horticultural Society, 
Merrill, George, 
Mitchell, E. L., 
Morgan, Henry J., Quebec, 
Moore, C. W., 

Murdock, A. W. and W. A., Lithographic stone 
containing designs illustrating the life of Franklin 
Myers, Hon. Leonard, 
Napoleon III, Emperor of the French, 
New Bedford Public Library, 
New York, Adjutant-General of, 
New York Bellevue Hospital, Medical College, 
New York Chamber of Commerce, 
New York Mercantile Library Association, 
New Nation, Publishers of. New York, 18 Papers. 
Olmstead, J. W., 

(3nderdonk, Henry, Jr., Jamaica, L. I., 
Otis, Mary, 
Owens, S. M., 
Parker, Henry T., 
Parker, iMrs. Lvdia D.. 

Vols. Pamphg. 



















Parker, Theodore, Library of, 

Peabody Institute, South Dan vers, 

Perkins, Augustus T., 

Perry, W. S., 

Pennsylvania Institute for the Instruction of the Blind, 

Philbrick, John D., 

Phillips, Wendell, 

Phillips Academy, Andover, Trustees of, 

Picard, William, Cadiz, 

Potter, Hon. E. R., Kingston, R. I., 

Providence, City of, 

Punchard, Rev. George, 

Punchard, Miss K. M., 

Quebec Literary and Historical Society, 

Ramsay, Cyrus, M. D., 

Redpath, James, 

Renard, Dr., Moscow, 

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 

Rhode Island Grand Lodge of Masons, 

Richardson, Elizabeth, 

Roberts Brothers, 

Rochester Athengeum, 

Roelker, Bernard, 

Salem Athenjeum, 

San Francisco Mercantile Library Association, 

Saturday Express, 12 Papers. 

Schenectady. Vassar Female College, 

Searle, George W., 

Seffar, Hon. Joseph, 

Shaw, Dr. B. S., 

Smith, C. C, 

Snow, Edwin M., M. D., 

Sokovnin, Captain, Russia, 

Sparks, J., 

Spencer, W. V., 

Storer, H. R., M. D., 

Streeter, Sebastian F., 

Sturgis, Robert, 

Sumner, Hon. Charles, 

Tappan, John, 

Thomas, J. Nichols, Providence, R. I., 

Thompson, Newell A., 

Vols. Pamplis. 














CnV ])t)(;i"MENT.~N(). U2. 

3 Papers, 

Bureau of Navigation , 

Coast Survey, 205 Charts. 

Department of State, 

Library of Congress, 

Naval Observatory, 

Navy Department, Wm. Faxon, 

Navy Department, 10 Maps. 

Ordnance Bureau, 

Treasury Department, 

Thurston, G. H., 

Ticknor, George, 

Tincker, Mary Agnes, 

Tohnan cSc Co., 

Toner, J. M., M. D., 

Torrey, J. G., 

Treadwell, Prof. Daniel, 

United States, 

United States. 

United States. 

United States. 

United States. 

United States. 

United States. 

United States. 

United States. 

United States. 

Upham, William P., 

Upton, George B., 

Urblno, S., 

Vienna, K. K. Geol. Reiohsanstalt, 

Vinton, Frederic, 

Walley, Hon S. H., 

Warren, Hon. C. H., 

Warren, J. M., M. D., 

Warren, William, Brighton, 

Warren & Co., 

Washington. Smithsonian Institution, 

Wells, Rev. E. M. P., 

Whipple, E. P., 

Whitney, Rev. Frederic A., Longwood 

Willis, Nathaniel, 

Wilmington Institute, 

Wilson, Hon. Henry, 

Winthrop,. Hon. R. C, 

Wisconsin, Adjutant-General of, 

Worcester Free Library, 

Worthington & Flanders, Pub. of the Traveller, 

Wright, Elizur, 

Wriy:ht & Potter, 

396 Papers. 

29 Papers, 
47 Papers, 

Vols. I'aiiiphs. 


















For one year, from Sept 1, 1863, to August 31, 1864, 

Binding, . . . . 

. $1,141 42 

Books, American, $4,690.18; 

Eemittances for 

foreign books, $8,423.31, 

13,113 49 

Catalogue, . . . . 

1,493 60 


790 81 

Fuel, . . . . 

1,317 01 

Furniture and Fixtures, 

221 68 

Gas, . . . . 

1,115 30 


547 29 

Salaries, .... 

. • . 12,192 90 


664 42 


191 36 

$32,789 28 




At a special meeting of the Trustees of the Public Library on 
the 13th Oct. 1864, the President laid before the Trustees a copy 
of a letter from Thomas Baring, Esq., M. P., to S. G. Ward, 
Esq. of this city, agent of the house of Messrs. Baring Bros. 
& Co., containing information of the death of Joshua Bates, 
Esq., the senior partner of the house, at London, 24th of Sept. 
last ; whereupon, on motion of the President, it was 

Resolved, unanimously, That the Trustees of the Public Library 
have received, with the sincerest emotion, the tidings of the death of 
their honored and beloved countryman, Joshua Bates, Esq., a man 
known and respected in both hemispheres, and whose loss will not easily 
be supplied in Europe or America ; whose character, in all respects pure 
and exemplary, was marked equally by the most endearing domestic 
and social qualities, and by that clear intelligence, sound judgment, 
executive force, and sterling worth, which enabled him not only to 
achieve extraordinary success in life, but to render important services 
to his fellow-men in the widest fields of action. 

The Trustees, with gratitude to his memory, look back upon the 
numberless acts of disinterested service, personal kindness, and unsoli- 
cited generosity, extended during his long career to his countrymen 
abroad, and they contemplate with pride and thankfulness his important 
agency in preserving and strengthening the ties of good will between 


the kindred countries. Especially in tlie trying times which have come 
upon us, they honor the pure patriotism which glowed in his heart 
and guided his conduct, rebuking disloyalty and rebellion, and counter- 
acting, in no small degree, the sinister foreign influences employed in 
the unworthy attempt to break down the nationality of the United 

That, as a duty incumbent peculiarly on the Trustees, they desire, on 
this occasion, to commemorate the liberality of Mr. Bates, in the en- 
dowment of the Boston Public Library, in which he was actuated by 
the earnest desire that his fellow-citizens of Boston, in all coming 
time, should enjoy those early advantages of mental culture, which 
fortune denied to him ; and while the Trustees bear in grateful remem- 
brance the bounties of a long list of Patrons of the Institution, they 
cheerfully accord to him, as by far its largest benefactor, — both for 
the magnitude and judicious appropriation of his gifts, and for the 
deep interest which he took in its prosperity from the outset, the name 
and honors of the Founder of the Boston Public Library. 

Resolved, That in consideration of the great value of Mr. Bates's 
donations in money and books, the large hall of the Library be hence- 
forward known and designated as Bates Hall. 

Resolved, That a copy of this tribute to the memory of our munifi- 
cent Founder be transmitted to the family of Mr. Bates, and to the 
house of Messrs. Baring Bros. & Co., with the assurance of our sincere 

Resolved, That these proceedings be conspicuously entered upon the 
Eecords of the Library, and that the Secretary be requested to cause 
a separate copy of the letters of Mr. Bates, and all other documents 
pertaining to his endowment, to be made, that the same may be held in 
distinct and perpetual remembrance. 

Resolved, Thafa copy of these proceedings be communicated to his 
Honor the Mayor, for the information of the City Council. 

A true copy, — Attest : 

C. C. JEWETT, Secretary. 


3 9999 06314 626 8 

NOV 23 1878