Art Collection

The Watertown Free Public Library has a rich cultural history. From the founding of the library, artists have donated their works so that many may enjoy their treasures. Solon Whitney, the first librarian, lamented the lack of a space to display art works in the newly built library on Main Street. From his annual report of 1884: “It is a great disappointment to me that there is no room in the new building which can be a kind of museum of works of art.” He went on to say that he would find places to display the art works as best as he could. Again in 1885, he mentions the lack of space, and makes a case for the purchase of display cases for special collections.

Over 100 years later, we remain committed to Whitney's vision of maintaining and displaying a permanent art collection at the Watertown Free Public Library. These treasures add to the quality of life of the citizens of Watertown and we feel an obligation to publicize and promote them. We hope you take some time to explore our collection by browsing the photographs below and discovering artwork on display throughout the library.

The art works included on this website were researched fully by Ellen Wendruff. Ellen wrote the explanatory text for each work and Scott Levine photographed the artworks.

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