Library \\ About

The Phillips Library

PEM’s Phillips Library is among the oldest libraries in the country. Rich primary and secondary sources — including vast quantities of manuscripts, books, photographs, maps, broadsides, and ephemera — make it a productive location for research and discovery. We look forward to welcoming you here.

Visit \\ Hours & Information

Visiting the Reading Room

The Phillips Library reading room is open to all. For the safety of library staff and visitors, appointments are required.

Library hours by appointment only
Wednesday, Thursday, Friday: 9am-noon, 1pm-4pm
306 Newburyport Turnpike, Rowley, MA 01969

The library’s mission is to preserve and share its extraordinary collections. Its scope is global and encyclopedic, reflecting more than 220 years of collecting activity. The library is based at PEM’s Collection Center in Rowley, a state-of-the-art facility with secure and climate-controlled storage.

Library \\ Collections


Search the Phillips Library’s collections using Philcat, our online catalog. Request library materials, access digitized items, order reproductions, and more.

Our digitization program exponentially increases free, worldwide access to our collections. In Rowley, we are improving physical stewardship through investments in conservation and storage. By sharing library materials through research, public programs, and exhibitions, the Phillips Library demonstrates that it is a vital and engaged part of the museum and its communities.


Online Collections

Explore the Phillips Library's growing collection of digitized manuscripts, books, broadsides, photographs, and more.

Library \\ About

Research Fellowships

Read about our programs to support independent research at the Phillips Library.

Library \\ About


Read about the Phillips Library’s holdings here. The library continues to develop its collection and seize opportunities to acquire landmark items.

Related \\ Connected

Graduate students dig into the papers of historic youth activists to tell the story of equal school rights in Salem

Related \\ Connected

PEM’s Phillips Library unlocks challenging 17th-century language and penmanship of the Salem witch trial documents

Related \\ Connected

Unpacking the images and papers of photographer Sam Chamberlain

Related \\ Connected

Phillips Library digitizes dictionaries from Vietnam and unlocks stories of museum founders and their travels