Morgan Library’s Historical Building to Undergo Major Restoration

May 19, 2010 Updated: October 1, 2015

Morgan's McKim building (Todd Eberle)
Morgan's McKim building (Todd Eberle)
Beginning in June, the Morgan Library and Museum's historical McKim building will undergo the most extensive interior restoration since its construction in 1906.

The project, slated to open on Oct. 30, will provide new and expanded exhibition space for the library to share with the public, and more treasures from its world-renowned permanent collection.

Designed by the firm of McKim, Mead, and White, the building once was the private library and study for financier Pierpont Morgan, one of the most well-known art collectors and cultural benefactors in the country.

"The McKim building is the heart and soul of the Morgan Library & Museum," said Morgan Director William M. Griswold in a press release. "Not only does it embody the taste and vision of the museum's founder and patron, Pierpont Morgan, but its beautiful rooms over the years have become synonymous with all that makes the Morgan special.”

The building is considered one of New York's most magnificent architectural treasures, with its interiors particularly aesthetically pleasing.

“No visit is complete without a tour of the McKim building and now, with this ambitious project and the installation of some of the Morgan's outstanding treasures, that experience will be greatly enhanced," Griswold added.

The $4.5 million refurbishment will restore and refresh the building's interior—library (East Room), study (West Room), North Room, and rotunda.

Some noted changes include new lighting throughout the building to better light up the murals and décor as well as opening up the North Room to visitors for the first time.

Other new features include the installation of new exhibition cases to hold rotating displays of masterpieces, rare books, and historical and music manuscripts from Morgan's collections. The library will also have its furniture and fixtures restored and its walls cleaned.

Located at Madison Avenue and 36th Street, the Morgan Library and Museum contains collections that range from Rembrandt to Picasso, Mozart to Bob Dylan, Dickens to Hemingway, and a Gutenberg Bible to Babar the elephant.

All other parts of the Morgan Library and Museum will remain open during renovations.

Admissions to the venue cost $12 for adults; $8 for students, seniors, and children.