We are an independent, not-for-profit community-supported art center located in rural western Kansas.
Incorporated in 1978, and housed in a historic Carnegie Library, our mission is to make the arts accessible to everyone in our community. We do this through arts education at the public schools, free community events, concerts, exhibitions, arts advocacy, and community beautification projects. You can support our work by making a one time donation, an annual membership, or becoming a Sustainer. Please see our sponsors listed below and thank them for their support!
The Carnegie Arts Center is housed in the historic Goodland Public Library, built in 1913, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in September 1985.
The building was constructed in large part thanks to a grant from Andrew Carnegie for $10,000, and an active, engaged, and motivated citizenry. The building was designed in an Italian Renaissance Revival style by Denver architects, Barrensen Brothers. It is one of 59 Carnegie libraries in the state of Kansas. The Arts Center has called this building home since 1985. Two major remodels of the top floor have been undertaken since 1985, the most recent being in 2017. The Arts Center features a modern visual arts gallery, gift shop and classroom space.
Goodland shows the way to equal voting rights
Goodland needs a library
Steel magnate is best hope for library
A special election is called; could women vote?
Women’s vote, Carnegie’s donation both unpopular with some
The City Council’s decision to accept Carnegie’s grant was not popular in all quarters. At a special meeting, City Councilman E.C. Mercer led the charge (PDF) against the library. He said Carnegie’s money was “tainted” because he was “the foe of the working man.” Carnegie was unpopular because of his business practices, including violent strike-breaking.
Election officials tallied men’s and women’s ballots separately
In case of legal challenges, Murphy said men’s and women’s ballots should be tallied separately (PDF). Both genders voted for the library tax. Men voted 139-78 in favor. Women voted 74-12 in favor.
The new library building opened Feb. 8, 1913. The grand opening (PDF) came a few weeks later, March 31, 1913. The Italian Renaissance Revival-style building is a two-story structure on a raised basement with a terra cotta roof. Its exterior remains nearly unchanged from its original appearance.
Women finally gain vote in state, national elections
Goodland outgrows its library
We’re always ready to bring art into your world.