At its opening on May 24, 1911, the New York Public Library attracted more than 30,000 visitors. The library was built in response to the dying wish of former New York governor Samuel J. Tilden to “establish and maintain a free library and reading room in the city of New York.” Known for the famous stone lions flanking its entrance, this library is also famous for its extensive historical collections. These include priceless medieval paintings, ancient Japanese scrolls, and a comprehensive Maps Division.
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