In this issue:

Membership    ·    New Books    ·    Event Calendar


Banner Image: Members' Reading Room, c.1962-63.

January Closings

The Athenaeum will be closed from January 5-10 due to floor refinishing work in the front hall.  We will reopen on Monday January 12th.  Athenaeum staff will be available by email during this time.

We will also be closed on January 19th for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Upcoming Events

Socrates Cafe Discussion Group

Tuesday, January 13, 11:00AM. More Information. RSVP to

Gallery Talk

Wednesday, January 14, 12:00PM.  Join Looking Forward Co-Managers Bruce Laverty and Michael Seneca for a gallery talk on the Looking Forward exhibition.  RSVP to or 215-925-2688.

"Looking Forward: Meet The Winners"

Saturday, January 24, 3:00PM - Brief presentations by professional winners of the Looking Forward architectural competition with an opportunity for questions and answers following.  Free. Space limited.  RSVP to or 215-925-2688.  The Athenaeum will be open from 11:00am-3:00pm.  Feel free to arrive early to see the exhibition.

Gallery Talk

Wednesday, January 28, 12:00PM.  Join Looking Forward Co-Managers Bruce Laverty and Michael Seneca for a gallery talk on the Looking Forward exhibition.  RSVP to or 215-925-2688.

"Looking Backward, Looking Forward: a Comparison of the Athenaeum’s 19th & 21st Century Architectural Competitions"

Wednesday, February 4, 6:00PM.  Curator of Architecture Bruce Laverty will compare the 19th century competition to design the Athenaeum's current building with the conceptual Looking Forward: Re-Imagining The Athenaeum of Philadelphia competition, the results of which make up our current exhibition. Co-Sponsored by ICAA and SAH. For more information about Looking Forward, click here. ICAA, SAH and Athenaeum Members Free. RSVP to or 215-925-2688. All Others $10. Online payment.

Looking Forward Competition Awards Announced

On December 5th, the Athenaeum announced the winners of the architectural competition Looking Forward: Re-Imagining The Athenaeum of Philadelphia and opened an exhibition of the submissions.  This event was the first Athenaeum program to be broadcast live on the internet.  For those of you who were unable to attend or watch it live, you can still view the recording:

Looking Forward Award Presentation Video
Looking Forward Exhibition Opening Video

The $5000 first place prize went to Ryan Lohbauer, Petra Stanev, Elizabeth Keshett, Melissa Styer, and Chun Wang of the Philadelphia firm, Stanev Potts Architects, for their design “Philadelphia Grotesque Revisited”; the $2500 first place student prize went to András Vernes of the Technische Universität Wien in Vienna, Austria for his design “Prolog.” The remaining winners and honorable mentions in both categories came from Budapest, Nicosia, Brooklyn, Washington, DC and Lyndhurst, NJ. A full listing of the names of the winners and images of their submissions can be seen on the competition website.

The Looking Forward exhibition continues through February 14th.  We also have a number of related programs scheduled which are listed above in "Upcoming Events."

Above: "Philadelphia Grotesque Revisited," by Stanev Potts Architects.

Franklin Birthday Celebration

On January 16, 2015, the Franklin Birthday Celebration will present the Franklin Founders Award to Athenaeum member Laurie D. Olin in recognition of his lifetime work in landscape design and urban planning. The 2015 Philadelphia Celebration includes a free morning seminar on the topic of Building the City featuring: Dr. Sandra L. Tatman, Executive Director of The Athenaeum of Philadelphia, Paul R. Levy, President and CEO of the Central Philadelphia Development Corp., and  Harris M. Steinberg, FAIA, Executive Director of the Lindy Institute for Urban Innovation, Drexel University.

Registration and additional information

American Antiquarian Society Periodicals

We have recently added bibliographical records for over 8000 periodicals contained in the American Antiquarian Society Historical Periodical Collection, Series 1-5 (1691-1877). This exceptional collection of digitized periodicals is available from the public computer at the Athenaeum, but Athenaeum members may also request a password for remote access by contacting Circulation Librarian Jill LeMin Lee at With either the member's password or the Athenaeum's public computer, AAS allows full text access to these periodicals; and you can download, e-mail, and print articles that interest you. If you just want to search for periodical titles, you can do that from the Athenaeum's library catalog using Location AAS to get an idea of the richness of this valuable resource.


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First three Saturdays of the month: 11:00am-3:00pm (excluding July and August).



219 S. 6th Street

Philadelphia, PA  19106 


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