The Library is currently closed until further notice please visit https://www.library.jhu.edu/library-hours/george-peabody-library/ for more information.

The George Peabody Library, known as Baltimore’s “Cathedral of Books,” is consistently ranked among the most beautiful libraries in the world. The famed library first opened its doors in 1878 and was to be “well furnished in every department of knowledge and of the most approved books of the day.”

Architect Edmund G. Lind’s drawings called for a massive skylight soaring over six tiers of cast-iron balconies to house a collection with over 300,000 volumes dating from the Renaissance through the 19th Century.

Highpoints of the collection include first editions by Poe, Hawthorne, Melville, Baltimore’s own H. L. Mencken, and many other American authors; Diderot’s famous 28-volume Encyclopédie; early editions of Don Quixote; children’s books; Maryland and Baltimore maps; beautiful natural history folios; a first edition of Darwin’s Origin of the Species; fore-edge books; and many other important imprints.

Today the library is part of the Special Collections division of the Johns Hopkins University Sheridan Libraries. By renting the George Peabody Library for your event, you are helping us preserve and protect this treasured Baltimore landmark, and offer access to the rare and unique materials it contains to spark discovery and learning by future generations.

If you are interested in booking a private tour of the George Peabody Library for your bridal party, or to learn about making a charitable gift in honor of the wedding couple, please email curator Paul Espinosa at pespino3@jhu.edu.

If you are interested in joining the Friends of the Johns Hopkins University Libraries, a group that supports the Peabody Library and hosts exhibition openings, lectures, and other educational and social events, please visit the Sheridan Libraries website at
library.jhu.edu/give.