The Cotsen Children’s Library is a very special library within the Department of Rare Books and Special Collections at Princeton University. Cotsen’s international research collection of illustrated children’s books, manuscripts, original artwork, prints, and educational toys from the 15th century to the present day is the benefaction of Lloyd E. Cotsen, class of ’50. In addition to academic conferences and publications, Cotsen’s curatorial staff maintain a blog about collections materials.
The library also has a public face, serving as a resource for children, families, educators, and book lovers. Bookscape, our whimsical reading gallery for children, begins with a giant blue book and a garden of charming topiary animals. From there, the room unfolds in a succession of reading areas stocked with books. Stop and rest on a comfortable leather chair by the “Hearth of Darkness” fireplace. Continue on to a koi pond, a wishing well, a playful puppet theater, and a towering bonsai hollowed out for the ultimate reading experience.
Cotsen also offers a variety of programs for children, including weekly story times, Saturday events, online author interviews, an annual writing contest, a literacy society, and K-5 classrooms presentations about our special collections.
Our gallery, and our programs, are open to the public and free of charge.
Photos by David Kelly Crow