Johnston Public Library is housed in a historic building originally constructed in 1872 for use as the Cherokee County Courthouse. Although it never convened as a courthouse, the basement jail was used until a courthouse was constructed in Columbus, Kansas. Later, the building was used as a city hall, junior college, and an interim church. Touring theater companies also held performances on the second floor. In 1905, Peter Nils Johnston made a bequest of $5,000 to the city for the establishment of a city library. In 1907, the library opened its doors. The first collection of books was donated by local citizens.
Today, the library strives to meet the cultural, intellectual, and social needs of the community and surrounding area by providing access to quality materials, services, and programming. The library is a member of the Southeast Kansas Library System and is governed by a seven member board of trustees. It operates on income from a mill levy and grants from the regional and state libraries.
Board of Directors
Assistant Library Director