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  • The Worcester Art Museum Library

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    Friends of the Library

    Enjoy behind-the-scenes programs and special speakers.

    Hours & Information

    Admission to the library is free of charge

    The Museum Library Hours


    School Year
    (Labor Day to Memorial Day)
    Wednesday-Friday, 11am-5pm
    Saturday, 10am-5pm

    (Memorial Day to Labor Day)
    Wednesday-Friday, 11am-5pm

    The library will be closed on May 27.

    Online Catalog

    Research Tools

    Phone: 508.793.4382


    The Worcester Art Museum Library, founded in 1909, is a bibliographic resource dedicated to the history of art reflecting the collection strengths of the Museum. The Library is managed in association with the College of the Holy Cross, a collaboration that began in 2001.

    The Library is located on the second floor of the Museum. The reading room is the original Sculpture Gallery in the Museum's 1898 building and houses frequently used monographs and art publications.

    Using the Library

    The Library serves the staff of the Museum, and also extends its resources and services to the community, including teachers, students, faculty, collectors, museum docents, scholars, and the general public.

    A photocopier is available ($.15 per page black and white, $.50 per page color) and a printer is attached to our public access computer terminals.

    Online Catalog

    The Library's online catalog provides access to most of the holdings of the Worcester Art Museum Library and the libraries of the College of the Holy Cross.

    Research Tools

    Special access to online research tools including:

    Art Resources
    Art Organizations
    Art and Research Libaries
    Worcester Area Libraries
    Exhibition Listings
    Auction Information
    Reference Tools

    Digital Collections

    The library provides on-line access to over 260 early Worcester Art Museum exhibition catalogs. The digitization of the catalogs was provided by the Digital Commonwealth and Boston Public Library and funded by an LSTA (Library Services and Technology Act) grant. The digitized exhibition catalogs are available on the Internet Archive.


    The Library's bibliographic collection encompasses all periods and media of art, with an emphasis on European, American, and Asian art. The collection includes:

    The collection is non-circulating.


    The Library welcomes both monetary donations and books that could be included in the Library's holdings. The Library accepts books that are in good condition and art related. You may also help the Library by donating a book from our wish list.

    Library Brochure

    Download the Library Brochure for more information on the library.

    Friends of the Library

    The Friends of the Library group was started in 2002 to support and enhance the Library's activities and collections. Its purposes are: to provide and attract new financial support to enrich the basic collections and activities of the Library; to provide and attract special collections, rare books, and manuscripts; to sponsor special projects or programs; to provide a thorough understanding of the Library and its role in the Museum's future; and to serve as a medium through which persons may advance their own intellectual pursuits and share their enthusiasm for books and art.

    The group meets four times a year and enjoys behind-the-scenes programs and special speakers. The group sponsors the triennial art book sale which is the Library's major fund raiser.

    New Friends of the Library members are always welcome! If interested, please email library@worcesterart.org or click the links below.

    Membership Levels

    Reader $50

    Bookworm $100

    Bibliophile $250

    Bibliomaniac $500


    WAM Friends of the Library Schedule 2016-2017

    Business meetings start at noon with a brown bag lunch followed by our speakers.

    Tuesday, September 20, 2016 - Author talk by Mark Fins about his book, Imagine That, the story of a lonely eight year old boy uprooted from his familiar home in Queens to a new home in Worcester who befriends an eccentric industrialist in his new neighborhood. The story is based on Fins’ encounter as a child with John Woodman Higgins, the founder of Worcester’s Higgins Armory.

    Tuesday, November 15, 2016 - Author talk by Susan McDaniel Ceccacci, Education Director for Preservation Worcester, about her new book, Living at the City’s Green Edge: Bancroft Heights, A Planned Neighborhood in Worcester, Massachusetts.Ceccacci, an architectural historian, “has created a rich tableau that captures Worcester’s cultural and industrial development over the past two centuries”.

    Tuesday, January 17, 2017 - Discussion by Birgit Strähle, Assistant Paintings Conservator at WAM, of the History of Libraries from Antiquity to the Present. Birgit Strähle first joined the WAM in 2003 as a graduate level intern, and held two fellowships from the Samuel H. Kress and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundations from 2006-2009. She received an M.A in art history from the University of Braunschweig and a Diploma in paintings and sculpture conservation from the University of Applied Sciences in Cologne, Germany.

    Tuesday, March 21, 2017 - Author talk by Stephanie Yuhl, Professor of History at the College of the Holy Cross about her book, A Golden Haze of Memory: The Making of Historic Charleston, UNC Press, 2005; “with a dazzling mixture of social and cultural history, this book represents a major contribution to our understanding of American arts and society during the 1920’s and ‘30’s”. Her book was awarded both the 2006 Willie Lee Rose Prize from the Southern Association of Women's Historians for the best book published in southern history in 2006 by a woman and the 2006 Historic Preservation Book Prize.