Engage with our books! The Athenæum’s wide-ranging collections, both rare and contemporary, represent the reading and acquisition tastes of Providence over the course of three centuries.
All are welcome to use the Athenæum as a resource, whether for personal enjoyment or scholarly research. The public is encouraged to use our collections within the building; members have borrowing privileges as described below.
Loan periods for all items are specified by type, below. Overdue fines are $.10 per day, except for DVDs which are $1.00 per day. Please note that items on our shelves which predate 1950 generally do not circulate.
New Fiction & New Mysteries | 2 weeks
DVDs & Audiobooks | 2 weeks
Periodicals | 2 weeks
Travel Guides | 2 weeks
Special Permission Books | 2 weeks
All other materials | 4 weeks
Most library materials may be renewed up to six times if there are no holds on them. To renew checked out items, please call the Circulation Desk at 401-421-6970, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or login to your library account through the shared RISD/Athenæum catalog (the Circulation Desk will provide your library ID number on request).
Members are always encouraged to request items that are not currently part of the library collection. Newer items (published in the last two years or so) will generally be purchased for the collection, and older items can usually be acquired through interlibrary loan. Most membership levels (except student memberships) entitle borrowers to request up to two items through interlibrary loan per month. Click here for more information.
To request an item that is not already in the Athenæum’s collection, please contact the library at 401-421-6970 or email your request to email@example.com. All requests should include the title, author, publication date and format (book, DVD, audiobook, periodical).
The Athenæum is proud to offer hoopla to provide access to ebooks, audiobooks, and digital streaming (movies, TV, and music!) to our members.
To start borrowing:
– Go to hoopladigital.com and click GET STARTED TODAY
– Enter and confirm your email and a password of your choosing
– Find your library (if you don’t see “Providence Athenaeum” automatically, enter library name or zipcode 02903)
– Enter your library ID number (you’ll receive this number in your welcome packet when you join the library, from the Circulation Desk, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org)
– Click SIGN ME UP and start borrowing!
For more information, download hoopla FAQs here.
Our Reference Librarian can assist you with any question, be it a general inquiry or research-oriented. A particular strength of the Athenæum’s Reference Collection is the Rhode Island Collection, which brings together all reference books related to the history and life of Rhode Islanders. If our resources do not yield the answers you are looking for, the Librarian can offer referrals to other relevant collections in the area. Please contact Stephanie Ovoian, Head of Research & Library Services, at email@example.com or 401-421-6970 x19.