The Armenian Cultural Library is named after Eghia (Eliah) Demirjibashian (1858-1908). Born in Haskoy, a suburb of Constantinople (Istanbul) in 1851, Demirjibashian is considered to be the most stylistic among Armenian writers. He was a novelist, poet, and teacher of history, literature, philosophy and aesthetics. A controversial figure, who created an inspiring yet somber aura around his name through the turbulent circumstances of his life, which, a century after his departure, still produces adoration and respect, as well as misunderstanding his public personality.
His diverse body of work includes the Dambanakan (Eulogy) in 1878, a year later, the Nor Keank’ (New Life), followed by P’ilisop’ayakan bararan (Dictionary of Philosophy), T’ught’ ar Nerses Patriarch (Letter to Patriarch Nerses) , Hatentir (Selective works) , and finally Shrjagayut’iwn me im t’aghis mej (A Walk through my Neighborhood . “Our Bosphorus” “The Monastic” and “Why We do not go to Church”.
Demirjibashian formed, edited and contributed to Erkragunt (Globe), Imastasirakan, grakan sharzhum (Philosophical, Literary Movement), Masis, Arewelk’ (The East), Hayrenik’ (Fatherland), and other periodicals and dailies, often under various pennames, Khaytuni, Sharzheants, Mshaki, Azatkhohian, Chgnavor.
The Library consists of nearly 45,000 items, books, pamphlets, periodicals, and documents, primarily in Armenian and English, dating as far back as the 1716. The collection encompasses a broad range of topics including history, literature, art, architecture, poetry, as well as philosophy, psychology, anthropology, and natural sciences.
Through the years, numerous significant and valuable collections have been donated to ACF. The largest of these are the Hayk Gakavian and Ardashes H. Shelemian Collection of more than 2000, and 1500 titles, respectively. Other major collections donated to ACF include those of it first curator Hagop Atamian, Dr. Kajak Balekjian, Dr. Hrach Abrahamian, Dr. Rev. Fr. Krikor Maksoudian, Krikor Koseyan, Dr. Varant Hagopian, Edward Alexander, Steven Fenerjian, Aram Gharabekian, Rev. Torkom Hagopian, and several other smaller collections.
Though privately funded, ACF continues to accept donations.
The library is open to the scholars and undergraduates, high school students, researchers, and the general public from around the world.
The ACF follows Library of Congress transliteration rules for Armenian, Russian, Farsi, and other languages. We suggest omitting diacritical marks when searching.
Online catalogues of other Boston-area Armenian libraries with important holdings of interest to researchers:
The Mesrob G. Boyadjian Library at the Armenian Museum of America (AMA) in Watertown, MA
The Edward and Helen Mardigian Library at the National Armenian Association for Studies and Research (NAASR) in Belmont, MA