In this issue:


Banner Image: Members' Reading Room, 1907.

Membership    ·    New Books    ·    Event Calendar

Banner Image: Members' Reading Room, 1907.


November Events

November 26th: Athenaeum will close at 1:00PM.

November 27th and 28th: Athenaeum closed.


Gallery Talk

Saturday, November 1, 2014, 1:30PM.  Donald Cresswell, A Plan of the City of Philadelphia and Environs Surveyed by John Hills, 1808.  Free.  More Information. To RSVP, call 215-925-2688 or email

Exploring The Athenaeum: Tips of the Iceberg

Wednesday, November 5, 2014, 12:00-1:00PM.  Join Executive Director Sandra Tatman for the next talk in this monthly series.  November will focus on a desk made by cabinetmaker Michel Bouvier for Joseph Bonaparte, ca. 1818-1820.  To RSVP, call 215-925-2688 or email

Treasures Lecture

Wednesday, November 5, 6:00PM.  Carol Eaton Soltis, “Partners in Art, Thomas Sully and His Daughter, Jane Sully Darley.” Free for Athenaeum Members.  To RSVP, call 215-925-2688 or email All others $10,  More Information and Online Payment.

E-Books Help Session

Monday, November 10, 2014, 1:00-4:00PM.  To RSVP, call 215-925-2688 or email

Socrates Cafe Discussion Group

Tuesday, November 11, 11:00AM. More Information. RSVP to

200 Years: Treasures Capstone Party

Wednesday, November 12, 6:00PM.  Click here for details and registration.

Gallery Talk

Saturday, November 15, 2014, 1:00PM.  Samuel Streit & Daniel Traister, “Rare Books at the Athenaeum.”  Free.  More Information.  To RSVP, call 215-925-2688 or email

Genealogy Workshop

Wednesday, November 19, 2:00-4:00PM.  More information.  To RSVP, call 215-925-2688 or email


E-Books Help Session

There will be an ebook help session on Monday, November 10 from 1-4 pm. You need not be here the whole time, but please allow at least an hour. Registration is required, and include the type of device when you register. Devices that work with our system are: Android/Nook HD/HD+; Apple iOS; Kindle Fire/Fire HD; Nook; Windows. Bring your device to the help session.

To register, call 215-925-2688 or email

200 Years: Treasures Capstone Party 

Please join us for the Treasures Capstone Party.

Program Highlights:

Premiere showing of History Making Productions’ Film Athenaeum followed by remarks from Sam Katz, Director of Athenaeum

Roger W. Moss will make remarks and sign copies of his latest publication Athenaeum Profiles: A Not-For-Profit Education. (Each attendee receives a complimentary copy). 

Incidental music provided by students from The Curtis Institute of Music.

Cocktail Reception.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014 

Time: 6:00 PM 

Tickets: $50.00 per person 

Dress: Business Casual

Treasures Capstone Party Registration

Athenaeum Looking Forward Competition Garners World Wide Participation

In April 2014, the Athenaeum opened registration for Looking Forward, Re-Imagining the Athenaeum of Philadelphia.  This conceptual architectural competition solicited designs for an Athenaeum building of the year 2050-one that would occupy our Washington Square site after our current structure was (hypothetically) dismantled, moved and rebuilt elsewhere. Given only the 6th Street plot that their 19th century forbears had, today's competitors were asked to design a building that would house the collections and programs of 2014, along with projected collection growth and institutional change 36 years hence. The full architectural program is available here.

Response was overwhelming.  By October 24 we had received a total of 88 submissions, representing 139 individuals. These break down as 42 student teams and 46 professional teams. The geographical spread in the US is from coast to coast, and our international participants hale from 19 countries including: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Chile, China, Cyprus, France, Germany, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Lebanon, Mexico, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, and the United Kingdom.  It can be confidently stated that never have so many designers, from such a wide geographical range, concentrated their imagination and talents on the Athenaeum--its site, its programs, its collections and its future.

Designs were submitted online on October 24 and are currently being reviewed by a 5-person jury of internationally-acclaimed architecture and library professionals. The jury will meet at the Athenaeum on November 4 to choose the winning entries. The winners will be announced at the Athenaeum on Friday December 5 at an evening reception that will coincide with the opening of an exhibition of the submissions in the Haas Gallery.

Award Presentation and Exhibition Opening

Friday, December 5, 2014

Reception: 5:30-6:15pm
Award Presentation: 6:15-6:45
Exhibition Open: 6:45-8:00pm

RSVP to or 215-925-2688

Roger W. Moss Symposium-Philadelphia Architecture: Present & Future

Registration is open for the annual Roger W. Moss Symposium.  This year's topic is Philadelphia Architecture: Present and Future.  

Speakers: Inga Saffron, Daniela Holt Voith & Cameron J. Mactavish, Scott Kelly, James S. Camp and Peter L. Gluck.

When: Saturday, December 6

Click here for the full program and registration





This Month In 1814:  A Look Back At The Athenaeum's Founding Year

In November 1814, Sculptor George M. Miller deposited several portrait busts at the Athenaeum. These included casts of Washington, Franklin, Bishop White, Shakespeare, Venus De Medici, Ottavia, Minerva (Athena), Susanna and Adonis. When Miller died in 1819, the Athenaeum paid his widow $50 and took ownership of the works. The casts of Shakespeare and Minerva are still in the collection today. They, along with several others, were left behind in Philosophical Hall when the Athenaeum moved to its present home in 1847. The American Philosophical Society returned them to the Athenaeum in 1961. Minerva is featured in the Athenaeum's current exhibition Treasures of The Athenaeum.

Minerva, by George M. Miller.


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