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 Woman'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 Board Members:
Board Members meet on the third Wednesday of every month at 5 pm in the meeting room at the library.
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
Mrs. Nichole Kostner: 2021 - Present
Library Memberships & Associations...
KLA: Kansas Library Association
PLA: Public Library Association
ALA: American Library Association
SCKLS: South Central Kansas Library Association
Kingman Area Chamber of Commerce
Bibliographic Center for Research: Through the Kansas State Library and the South Central Kansas Library System