Welcome to Mechanics’ Hall

In 1815, the Maine Charitable Mechanic Association was the fellowship for Portland’s creative community: the blacksmiths, coopers, carpenters, and more.  Between 1857 and 1859, they built Mechanics’ Hall to house their library and become a communal gathering space. Today’s Mechanics’ Hall connects to that rich history by inspiring and enriching the community while promoting ingenuity, creativity, innovation and the diffusion of useful knowledge.

We are the modern mechanics. Join us. 

Now open for library pick-up service!

Exciting news for all of you book lovers: we’ve opened the library for “curbside” service! Now you can pick up new titles and return old ones Tuesday through Thursday. Please click button below for more details.

Hours and Instructions

The Killing of George Floyd: A Letter to Our Community

“To be very honest about my experience in the last decade, a great deal has changed on the surface.

But nothing has changed in the depths.”

~ James Baldwin, 1979

Mechanics’ Hall condemns the killing of George Floyd and countless others at the hands of police brutality and racist vigilantism. We believe Black Lives Matter; we stand with and support the necessary peaceful protests that are happening in our city, country, and all over the world. Read the full letter to our community and view reading suggestions here. Our organization was founded on the principle that knowledge can bring about change and in particular that “the diffusion of useful knowledge” into the hands of those with less access, or means, is our duty. We acknowledge there is much work to be done and we are committed to doing it, including sharing reading lists from our library and others on antiracism, adding new titles to our collection, programming more diverse voices and most importantly listening – really listening – so that Baldwin’s words, and others like them, no longer go unheard.


Image courtesy of Black Lives Matter

Upcoming Events

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