The most revealing room in the entire home, Maggie Walker’s library encapsulates her persona with its furnishings, photographs, decorations, and books. The room, fitted with a writing desk and a matched sofa and chair set, served as Mrs. Walker’s home office and reading room. It had been an examination room for the home’s previous owner; Dr. Robert Jones, an African American physician. There are no known audio recordings of Mrs. Walker. However, fortunately, it was here that she wrote and saved her speeches, lectures, and other public addresses. These are now preserved in National Park Service archives.
Maggie Walker outfitted the long, narrow library with glass-fronted bookcases to house her expansive collection of literature, anthologies, and journals. These often provided her with inspiration as well as practical instruction. The walls are decorated today as they were in Mrs. Walker’s lifetime. They are bedecked with photographs and posters African American luminaries from Frederick Douglass to Marcus Garvey; and Phyllis Wheatley to Paul Lawrence Dunbar. Many were Mrs. Walker’s friends, collaborators, and visitors to the home. Mounted above the bookcases, the degrees and diplomas of the Walker family are a testament to the family’s achievements and promise.