The Rosenbach Reopens To The Public on October 20 [press release]

For immediate release

PHILADELPHIA, October 14, 2020—The Rosenbach is pleased to announce that after more than six months of closure due to COVID-19, the museum is reopening its buildings to the public on Tuesday, October 20. Visitors will have the chance to see the new exhibition Manjiro: Drifting, 1841–2020, the continuing exhibition American Voyager: Herman Melville at 200, the recently-acquired miniature model of Rosenbach Company partner John Fleming’s library, and of course the garden that reopened last month after more than 20 years.

The Rosenbach will be open Tuesday-Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. To maintain safe social distancing with limited capacity, pre-registration is strongly suggested as groups of up to 4 will be admitted every half hour. Visitors can begin booking their timed tickets with this link or by emailing [email protected].

The Rosenbach is implementing rules and restrictions to keep visitors and staff safe. All visitors above the age of 2, and all museum staff, are required to wear masks that cover the mouth and nose at all times. In addition, sanitizing stations will be available throughout the museum and shared spaces will be sanitized every hour. Find a full list of policies and procedures at

At this time, access to The Rosenbach’s historic house and library are not available but visitors are welcome to enjoy a self-guided visit through multiple exhibitions, galleries, and spaces. Details of the visitor experience are below.

  • New exhibition, Manjiro: Drifting, 1841–2020. Manjiro’s epic tale begins in 1841, when, as a teenager, he left his tiny Japanese village on a fishing trip. A violent storm left him shipwrecked and set the course that would lead Manjiro to become the first Japanese person to live in the United States. Highlights include Manjiro’s own illustrated manuscript depicting his world travels, rare letters between Manjiro and the captain who rescued him at sea, and much more.
  • The Rosenbach’s garden, open to the public again after more than twenty years of closure. The garden is a 1,600 square foot green oasis tucked behind The Rosenbach’s Delancey Street townhouses. The garden was carefully renovated this summer and is now filled with plants and flowers that were specially selected to connect with works of literature in The Rosenbach’s collections.
  • A new acquisition, miniature model of John Fleming’s library. Fleming was hired by the Rosenbach brothers as a clerk in his teens, advanced through the company, and later became vice president of our founders’ business. He eventually purchased a large portion of the company’s stock and took over after Dr. Rosenbach’s death. Learn more on our blog about our new acquisitions.
  • American Voyager: Herman Melville at 200. Originally scheduled to close in July 2020, the exhibition celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of Moby-Dick author Herman Melville has been extended through December 21, 2020. Due to safety limitations, the exhibition will be on view in limited capacity.

Learn more about visiting The Rosenbach along with a full set of safety rules and regulations at Additionally, The Rosenbach will continue to offer a diverse series of virtual programs, courses, tours, and exhibitions. Coming up this season online: The Rosenbach launches a new digital exhibition “I Am an American!” The Authorship and Activism of Alice Dunbar-Nelson on October 20; a virtual Behind the Bookcase tour Dracula: The Enduring Monster on October 28; a new online course Stage to Screen: Great Films from Great Plays starting on November 5; and much more available at


About The Rosenbach
The Rosenbach creates unique experiences for broad audiences through programs inspired by its world-class holdings of literature and history. The Rosenbach is located in Center City Philadelphia and is open to the public with growing content available at all times on The Rosenbach is affiliated with the Free Library of Philadelphia.