What do Lou Gehrig, Henry Kissenger and Ralph Ellison Have In Common? A Library! Add to these personalities singer Maria Callas and politician Jacob Javits, and you have a celebrity-studded alma-mater for this library in Washington Heights. At the library’s 75th anniversary in 1989, Kissenger “fondly recalled how important the branch was to them as teenagers,” and the steady stream of school children entering the library at 2:30pm attests to its staying power. This Fort Washington neighborhood is just a few blocks from the George Washington Bridge and has very little by means of open space and gathering places.

The real treat of this library is the whimsical children’s floor, decorated with oversized lampshades. On the outside of the lampshades are silhouettes of children, animals and toys. The insides have pictures of local architecture, old newspaper prints, flowers and other illustrations. The room is well-lit from both sides by large arched windows and an inviting semi-circular couch sits in front of a fireplace.

NYPL Fort Washington Branch
535 West 179th Street (between St. Nicholas & Audubon Avenues)

New York, NY 10033-5799
(212) 927-3533