Library Visit: Miller Memorial Central Library in Hamden, CT

It’s fall and time to get back into some library visit posts. First up is the Hamden public library which I visited in July.

Miller Memorial Central Library
2901 Dixwell Ave
Hamden, CT 06518

The library was originally built with a bequest left by the wife of local businessman Willis E. Miller (1840-1904).

Thornton Wilder (1897-1975) lived in Hamden and the library also honors the playwright’s memory and legacy. Click here for the library’s page on Wilder.

You can read a bit of the library history here.

The view from the parking lot.


Playful three-dimensional sculpture by David Boyajian.


Another view of the artwork, facing the entrance.


Honoring the book. The library’s website describes the sculpture as, “stainless steel, grounded by a huge history book atop a classical column. The book title, Land of the Sleeping Giant, is also the name of the Sculpture, and refers to Hamden’s “most precious historic natural treasure.” The wall relief portion of the sculpture consists of four lightweight aluminum archways that span a 16 foot-wide area under the building’s name and above the free-standing sculpture. Trellised forms of free falling oak leafs reflecting ambient light symbolize Hamden’s original four villages of Mt. Carmel, Whitneyville, Highwood and State Street” (source link).


Sleeping Giant State Park is in Hamden.


The central area of the library.


Check out the totem pole. From the library’s Twitter handle, I discovered that’s @TotemTom. The info desk is sure easy to find here.


Thornton Wilder lived in Hamden. I didn’t realize it at the time, but his desk and some other memorabilia from his home are on display here. Check out the library’s website for a picture of his desk here.


Cool firetruck display courtesy of Stephen H. Craig, former North Haven volunteer fireman.


A view of the children’s section from the second floor.


A few of the lobby area and children’s section from the third floor.
The front entrance and the check out desk.


A slice of the teen’s section.


Not sure how well you can see this, but its a framed collection of pictures of various bookstores, libraries, and book fairs. What a great way to save and celebrate bookish memories.


The periodicals section.


Public computers. The system was down the day I visited or else I’m sure each computer would’ve had a user gazing at its beauty.


Study tables in the stacks.


Study carrels always make me feel warm & fuzzy. It’s a rush of anticipation, knowing new knowledge is just steps away!


I remember when ‘adult fiction’ meant something entirely different.


I’m not a big fan of modern architecture, but I was digging the angles created by the stairwell.
The library’s bookstore, Second Hand Prose, was closed when I visited…must go back.


The ramp to Second Hand Prose. It’s like a magic bridge leading to treasure.


Good prices.


The Hamden Historical Society Library has a dedicated room.


Serious research happens here.


Lots of Cather on the shelf. I’m always happy to see a shelf full of Willa, but then I pause and wonder and hope that these books are being checked out and read!

The library logo.

If you’re a regular reader of my library visit posts, what sort of pictures and/or information would you like me to include in future posts that I might be missing now? I’d love to hear your thoughts, so please leave a comment below. Thanks!


  1. I love the 3D sculpture outside and how light and vibrant the library feels. In general I'm not the biggest fan of wasted space in a library – pack as much in as possible, but I love the airy feel of it.

  2. Love the ramp. I'll bet it's hard to leave that part of the library. Amazing, this is where Thornton Wilder lived. I enjoyed visiting a library with you. Hope you do it many more times this autumn. Into winter too?

  3. I love Thornton Wilder! I would love to visit the library some day. Did you know there is a Willa Cather reading week going on in December? I hope to join and knock one or two of titles off my list.

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