Learn the Library's History
In 1871, the Ladies Circulating Library was formed in a house in downtown Newark. The reading room was moved to the basement of the Courthouse in 1880 but eventually closed.
On March 16, 1908, the Newark Public Library was officially established by City Council at the urging of several women from the Monday Talks Club, who had also opened the Ladies Circulating Library. The Newark Public Library opened to the public in September 1908 using one rent-free room in the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Memorial Building, later known as the Auditorium Theater.
In 1920, the library moved to the Hilliard House at 105 West Church Street, back-to-back with the former Newark High School.
A new building opened in 1950 at 88 West Church Street where it remained until voters passed a bond levy in 1997 to build the current Main Library.
It opened in 2000 and is the largest library in the Licking County Library System. In 2008, the State Library approved a change in the Newark Public Library’s legal status enabling the Licking County Library to become a County District Library, hence the name changing from Newark Public Library to Licking County Library due to serving communities outside of Newark.
The Licking County Library serves communities throughout Licking County, geographically, the third largest county in Ohio.