Mary Baker Eddy (1821-1910) was a 19th century American author, poet, teacher and founder of Christian Science, and this library, research center and museum gives visitors the chance to take a glimpse into her life. This inspiring New England woman achieved many things during her lifetime and was a pioneer in many fields from business to publishing, education and women’s rights, especially during a time when women had very little power or voice to be heard.
At the Mary Baker Eddy Library you’ll learn more about this remarkable woman through exhibits, collections and a library, which is home to “one of the largest collections by and about an American woman.” While an attraction located in a Christian Science church might scare some off, the exhibits presented are interesting and informative, touching on an array of topics and issues.
Begin your exploration in the Quest Gallery to learn more about the achievements of Mary Baker Eddy through photographs, documents and exhibits and computer-based “quests” that electronically take you through life’s challenges, many of which Mary Baker Eddy faced herself. In the “Journey Toward Home” exhibit visitors are taken through this woman’s most significant moves, which is important to understand as Mary Baker Eddy viewed relocating as relating to power. And in “Transcending Boundaries” you’ll see the work of young artists from Artists for Humanity as the exhibit showcases Polaroid portrait photos of these youths with captions that answer a question on global connections, for example, "What do you want to ask someone from across the globe?"
The highlight of a visit to the Mary Baker Eddy Library is undoubtedly the Mapparium, a three-story stained-glass globe that takes visitors into an inverted Planet Earth as it appeared in 1935 to literally be in the middle of the many countries and cultures around the globe. Learn about geography, history and have some fun with the globe’s unique acoustics. A music and light show enhances the experience and reminds you that your ideas have the power to change the world. Additionally, artifacts and documents further tell the story of how this inspiring exhibit came to be.
Don’t leave without perusing the gift shop, which sells books, clothing, artwork, accessories, memorabilia and an impressive selection of beautiful globes.