Mission and History

The Keller Library provides an environment and collections to educate and form leaders for the church and offers resources in support of the curriculum of the General Theological Seminary.The primary context and focus of this collection is the Episcopal Church and broader Anglican Communion in a changing world. These are recognized to be broad and inclusive in their reach and interests.

The Library seeks to maintain its historic collections and enhance the resources available to its patrons through cooperation with other libraries, particularly theological libraries in the New York area.

About the Keller Library

The General Theological Seminary Library is the oldest Episcopal seminary library. In 1820, John Pintard, an early New York civic leader, found “the only set of the Fathers now for sale in America” and raised $330 from his friends to donate the set to the fledgling General Theological Seminary, “to form the proud commencement of a Library.” Many of these volumes are shelved in the Julius M. Cruse Rare Book Reading Room. In the seminary’s first year, the collection grew to 2,500 volumes. When the Rev. Eugene Augustus Hoffman became Dean in 1879, the library embarked on a period of expansion during which the Copinger Collection of Latin Bibles and illuminated manuscripts were acquired.

The Library of the General Theological Seminary was known as the St. Mark’s Library from the 1960s to 2011, when the Library moved into a beautiful new facility on the former site of Sherrill Hall. In October 2011, the building was dedicated as the Christoph Keller, Jr. Library, to honor the Rt. Rev. Christoph Keller, Jr. who served as the tenth Bishop of Arkansas from 1970 to 1981.

The Library’s Special Collections consist of over 30,000 volumes with an emphasis on Anglican and Episcopal documents, early Bibles, and editions of the Book of Common Prayer. (More information on these collections and the seminary archives are available here.)

The library offers students in all GTS programs extensive theological resources through its large collection of printed materials and its online catalog. Visiting scholars, clergy and lay people may use the library’s resources for reference and research.

The Library is a founding member of the New York Area Theological Library Association (NYATLA), which permits students access to over four million volumes in the collections of its 20 member institutions. The Library also participates in the New York Metropolitan Reference and Research Agency (METRO) cooperative, which offers the resources of over 200 libraries in the metropolitan area. Other materials may be obtained by interlibrary loan.

The library staff welcomes visits from prospective students and visiting scholars.  We look forward to meeting you!

The Christoph Keller, Jr. Library building is closed.

The library's physical collections are not available to patrons, as GTS transitions to future uses of this space. 


Learn about The Way of Wisdom Declaration by our Faculty,
and discover more about the Way of Wisdom in the
Keller Library News.