About Our Library
The library building is a two-story, rectangular, Neo-Classical red brick building. The east elevation houses the main entrance with a stone pediment above, carrying the Carnegie library name. The library is listed on the Kansas and National Register of Historic Places.
The library has recently undergone outside maintenance and repairs, though no design changes. This project was partially supported by a Heritage Trust Fund grant from the Kansas State Historical Society, in the amount of $24,000 with a $6,000 match from the city.
The library movement began in Kingman in 1885, when members of the Women's Christian Temperance Union donated a few books for a circulating library. In 1890, the Nineteenth Century Club was organized, and the infant club gave impetus to the library movement. In 1888, the library was moved from a private home to the city hall building, and a reading room was opened.
As early as May, 1911, the library board was obtaining a Carnegie grant, and in May, 1912, an investigation for a site for a Carnegie library got underway. Correspondence was begun with Andrew Carnegie and on May 21, 1913, the library board obtained a Carnegie grant for $10,000 to build a library.
Two lots were purchased from Robert and Rebecca Cates for $700.00, the lots being in the 400 block of North Main at the intersection with Avenue D West (U.S. Highway 54). The library dedication was held on June 23, 1914, at which time the library was opened to the public.
In 1932, the main stairs to the entrance on the east were removed, and a divided entrance stair, present today, was constructed. Completed in 1987 was a 2,600 square foot addition to the existing 4,280 square foot building.
The mission of the library is to provide modern library resources, services and programs to meet the educational, recreational and informational needs of the community. The library functions as a service center library and a back-up for major resource centers. Resources at the library are supplemented by resources from the South Central Kansas Library System, the Kansas State Library, and the interlibrary loan system.
Our Librarians through the years
Mrs. Mary M. Conkling
Mrs. L. M Berry
Mrs. Davis - 1913
Mrs. Alice McIlhenny 1913-1919
Miss Ethel Summers 1919-1965
Mrs. Reva Jo Weniger 1965-1981
Mrs. Carol Grimes 1981-1989
Mrs. Linda Slack 1989-2006
Mrs. Grace Helm 2006- 2021
Miss. Nichole Balkenbush 2021 - Present
Membership In Associations
KLA ..................... Kansas Library Association
PLA ..................... Public Library Association
ALA ..................... American Library Association
Bibliographic Center For Research...... through the Kansas State Library and the South Central Kansas Library System.
Kingman Area Chamber of Commerce
Kingman Carnegie Library
455 North Main