State Library of NSW
In the reading roomc 1931-42
By the 1930s the collections of the NSW Public Library were spread between the Mitchell building and the old library on the corner of Bent and Macquarie streets. For nearly 100 years the old library was the central location for public access to the collections and it is captured here towards the end of this period. Although the building looks quite cramped, the depiction is warm and focuses on human interaction.
The new Mitchell Library, built in 1910, provided access to the collections of David Scott Mitchell. Further additions made over time included a new glass ceilinged reading room. The collections and staff moved to their new home in preparation for the reading room opening in 1942 and the old building closed to the public.