Athenaeum Press

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Athenæum Press
Athenaeum Press building.jpg
Athenaeum Press is located in Massachusetts
Athenaeum Press
Athenaeum Press is located in the United States
Athenaeum Press
Location215 1st Street,
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Coordinates42°21′51″N 71°04′45″W / 42.364200°N 71.0793°W / 42.364200; -71.0793Coordinates: 42°21′51″N 71°04′45″W / 42.364200°N 71.0793°W / 42.364200; -71.0793
ArchitectLockwood, Greene, & Co.
MPSCambridge MRA
NRHP reference No.82001917[1]
Added to NRHPApril 13, 1982

The Athenæum Press Building is an historic building located at 215 First Street in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It occupies the entire block between First Street, Second Street, Athenæum Street, and Linskey Way (formerly Munroe Street). Topped by a statue of Athena, it is visible from the Charles River and Longfellow Bridge.


The building was designed by Lockwood, Greene & Company (with tile vaults designed by the Guastavino Company[2]) and completed in 1895. It was built for Ginn & Company and Edwin Ginn, owners of The Athenæum Press, to house its printing operations, and was built using principles of late 19th-century textile mill construction. Due to its highly visible location, the building was given a number of stylistic embellishments.[3] The front of the building resembles an Ancient Greek temple implemented in brick, patinated copper, and glass. The building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982. The building was the third major printing house built in Cambridge (after those of Harvard University Press and Riverside Press), and one of the first major industrial sites on Cambridge's riverfront.[3]

The building has 380,000 square feet (35,000 m2) of floor space and was renovated circa 2005. The facility was used for many years to print textbooks.[4] Ginn & Company later became part of the Penguin Group.

Current use[edit]

As of 2019, Occupants include the Cambridge Athletic Club (a local gym), Partners HealthCare Innovation, the Lean Enterprise Institute, SAGE Therapeutics, Constellation Pharmaceuticals and several other small businesses.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. April 15, 2008.
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-09-27. Retrieved 2011-08-15. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link) CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ a b "NRHP nomination for Athenaeum Press". Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Retrieved 2015-05-22. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^

External links[edit]

  • Souvenir of the Athenaeum Press by Ginn and Company, 1903. A 24-page book with descriptions and photographs, available for free download.
  • Silent movie showcasing printing activities in the building in 1925. Moviecraft archive.