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Member Benefits

Boston Athenæum members provide nearly one-fifth of the institution's annual operating funds with their annual dues. In return, members enjoy a wide range of benefits.

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Building and Events Access

  • Spend time in twelve levels of beautiful space for reading, reflection, and open-stack browsing, including the iconic fifth floor reading room;
  • Receive invitations and discounted ticketing to book talks, lectures, gallery openings, and other events;
  • Meet other members and join more than 20 members-only book discussion groups;
  • Take members-only tours and curator-led orientations;
  • Enjoy free and unlimited access to exhibitions;
  • Bring guests with you to Athenæum events or a private tour of the building


Library Privileges

  • Check out books from the library's continuously expanding circulating and reference collection of more than 500,000 volumes, many not available in public libraries;
  • Listen to cloudLibrary's wide selection of eAudiobooks, which may be checked out to your phone, tablet, or computer, providing access to in-demand titles with shorter waiting times than other libraries;
  • Find personalized reference and reader services assistance;
  • Access an extensive collection of nearly 500 periodicals, including newspapers, magazines, and journals;
  • Read newspapers including the Boston GlobeBoston HeraldNew York TimesFinancial TimesWall Street Journal , and the Sunday Washington Post in the Gordon Newspaper Reading Room;
  • Get quick and friendly assistance with ILL (Interlibrary Loan) requests;
  • Take advantage of a book mailing service with free outbound postage;
  • Enjoy generous lending times and short waiting periods for popular books.


Online and Electronic Benefits

  • Access online resources, anytime and anywhere:
    • LexisNexis (news and business)
    • JSTOR
    • Project Muse
    • Art Full Text
    • and much more; browse our offerings.


Children's Library Benefits

  • Access Children's Library spaces;
  • Check out books from the Children’s Library’s circulating collection;
  • Access recurring free events for ages 0-18;
  • Gain free or reduced admission to family events, including author/illustrator talks, art workshops, and performances;
  • Seek personalized recommendations and curated book lists;
  • Receive regular updates about children’s programs via e-newsletter;
  • Add a caregiver/nanny to your Family membership in order to accompany children to the Children's Library.

(The Children's Library offers regular story times, currently set at 10:30 AM Saturdays and on demand on Wednesdays and Fridays.)


And More...


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