There are some excellent (and free) events coming up soon at the Athenaeum, starting today!

Wed 2/26, 5:15-7pm: Athenaeum Orientation, Tour, and Reception (reception 5:15-5:45pm; presentation 5:45-6; building & Special Collections tours 6-7).

Whether you’re a new Athenaeum member, a longstanding member who has never taken a tour, or a potential member interested in learning more, join us to ensure you’ll be able to make the most of your experience at the library. You’ll learn about the library’s history, take a tour of the building, and view some of the treasures of the rare book collection from past centuries.

RSVP to Stephanie Knott: 421-6970 x14 or

Fri 2/28, 5-7pm: Salon: Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) Museum Director Valerie Steele on “Octave Uzanne: La Mode & La Femme in Fin-de-Siècle Paris,” part 1 of a 2-part mini-festival, Octave Uzanne: “Bohemian Gentleman, Bibliophilosophe,” co-presented with the John Carter Brown Library’s Watts History and Culture of the Book Program and the John Russell Bartlett Society.

Octave Uzanne (1851-1931) was a French writer and bibliophile, who is known today (if at all) primarily as the creator of luxurious illustrated books. Yet he was a strange and interesting individual whose life intersected with an array of literary, artistic, and bohemian figures, from the poet Mallarmé to the pornographer Felicien Rops. Steele will focus on Uzanne’s role as a pioneering fashion historian, his theories about female psychology, and what his work reveals about the culture of fin-de-siècle Paris.

Sponsor: Susan Jaffe Tane. Salon is made possible in part by a friend of the Athenaeum who wishes to remain anonymous

Sun 3/2, 3-5pm: An afternoon with Maureen Taylor, The Photo Detective The Wall Street Journal has called her “the nation’s foremost historical photo detective.”

Maureen Taylor is an internationally recognized expert on photograph identification and genealogy, bringing together her knowledge and skills in history and research into family stories while giving insight into the invention and development of photography itself. Through private consults and group seminars, Maureen helps people solve a range of photo-related mysteries, from dating a Civil War era daguerreotype to organizing gigabytes of family photos from a digital camera. If you’ve inherited a box of family photos, you’ll want to listen in as Maureen talks about photographs and family history.

RSVP to Stephanie Knott: or 421-6970 x14.

Sponsor: Jillian Siqueland of Residential Properties, Realtors.

*All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.