Cloisters: Reading Room

The Cloisters Library was established early in the museums history.
Images and descriptions from thirties show the reading room is virtually unchanged. There are a few more tables, and some scanners, but it has retained its original form and function.
The Cloisters Library has never intended (or had funding, space or staff) to be a fully fledged medieval studies, or medieval art library. It is an extremely refined collection of about 13000 titles supporting the museums specific collection: with a focus on the actual art and architecture held by the Cloisters collection.
The library is by-appointment, postgraduate only (except by special arrangement).
The Met Education Department does host eight undergraduate interns in the summertime, and they spend 2 months doing research here.This culminates in a gallery talk about a particular area of the collection.
Those two months are a busy time for this little library.

The collection was converted to LC in 2002, away from a customised Dewey system developed and implemented by the (apparently quite mad) Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art Librarian in the mid 1880s. The reading room and working reference collection in the first stacks were the first to be converted, although the second stacks, containing much of the archive and older materials still retains some of the original tweaked Dewey system.

The handsome card cabinets are still in situ in the reading room.
When Michael started with the Met Library (the Watson, at the Central Park location we all know and love- and where i received a tour of their new state of the art preservation/restoration lab) the card files were still in effect.
The LMS in use is the Innovative Millennium system
The central Met OPAC, punningly titled Watsonline includes all 11 major library collections, and is an efficient, utilitarian interface to the magnificent resources of this museum.