Students in library

The St. Thomas More Library serves the students, faculty and the monastic and lay community at Portsmouth Abbey School. Its collection of books, periodicals, non-print and on-line resource materials supports the liberal arts curriculum of the School and provides recreational reading for all members of the community.

It is our goal to promote reading and research for knowledge and pleasure as well as to teach the necessary information-gathering skills which students will need to become life-long learners.The library is open every day when the School is in regular session. It is an attractive and spacious campus location for quiet study, research and pleasure reading. Although the library is not open to the public, special arrangements to use or borrow an item from our collection can be made with the library director. Our students can use Interlibrary Loan from another library by filling out our pre-printed form and requesting the item through the library director. Our loan period is three weeks and it is the same for materials we loan to other libraries through Interlibrary Loan.

The book collection holds approximately 50,000 volumes in the fields of literature, history, art history, theology, classics, math and science. Approximately 10 on-line services are provided to students. Ongoing Donations to the collection from the John D. Reynolds, Thomas Moran, Elias D. Mogayzel, William Haney III, Mary Louise Kearney, Robert Capone, and N. Young DuHamel book funds are used to augment the library general materials budget.

The art seminar reading room holds about 3,400 art books begun originally from a collection of Dom Hilary Martin and Dom Peter Sidler of Portsmouth Priory. This collection is currently added to each year by donations from the Donald Mc Guire Book Fund, the James Sand Book Fund and others.

The School library subscribes to about 80 magazines, six English and one French newspaper. Back files of all major newspapers and magazines are maintained, including a selection of newspapers and broadsides from the colonial era. Online indexing and delivery of contemporary articles and journals is available. An alumni donation of 12,000 classical music CDs has been cataloged for use by the Abbey community. A collection of about 1,400 DVD …of curriculum support and entertainment interest is available for faculty and specified student assignment use.

The book collection holds nearly all of the books published by such diverse Portsmouth Abbey alumni authors, such as Vincent Cronin ‘40, Keith Botsford '44, E.J. Dionne '69, Christopher Buckley '70, John Gregory Dunne '50, Dom Julian Stead '43, Thomas Mullen '92 and Michael C.J. Putnam '50. The faculty reading club often reads books by alumni authors.

The monastery collection of approximately 40,000 volumes is in the process of being electronically cataloged. Most items are of a religious nature and many are in a foreign language. In special circumstances, those items that are uniquely held there may be made available to the faculty and to students by the school librarian's request to the Abbey monastery librarian.

Learn more about the St. Thomas More Library at Portsmouth Abbey School on our full website.

Library Hours

Monday–Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Saturday 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Sunday: 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Extended hours available during exam periods.



Ms. Mary Fran Vesey
Library Director
Additional information about the library can be obtained by contacting the director at