On Monday, May 29 (Memorial Day), Hennepin County libraries are closed.
Just like the library books themselves, this wooden arch has stories to tell. The 12-by-12-foot arch originally graced the Ladies Reading Room at the first central library at Hennepin and 10th. When the library moved in 1961 (to Third Street and Nicollet Mall), this carved over-mantel also moved, forming the niche that would house the statue of “Minerva,” the Roman goddess of wisdom, for decades. (You’ll also find “Minerva” on display at Minneapolis Central Library.) Moved again in 2006, today the arch serves as the entrance to the Special Collections Department, offering a fitting reminder of the library’s long legacy.