Important dates in Boston Public Library history:
- 1848. Founded by an act of Great and General Court of Massachusetts.
- 1854. First building opens to the public.
- 1895. Central Library, architect Charles Follen McKim's "palace for the people", opens.
- 1986. McKim building designated a National Historic Monument.
Boston Public Library: A Brief Walking Tour of the McKim Building. The great twin lions, couchant, on pedestals at the turn of the stairs, are of unpolished Siena marble and are the work of Louis Saint-Gaudens.