Library History

Use the arrows to scroll through CCPL’s history.

1896

The tax levy passes for a library in the City of Newport.

1898

Newport opens a library in the Newport Mutual Fire Insurance Company building at the NW corner of Fourth Street and Monmouth Street. It is the city’s first free library.

1899

Steel tycoon turned philanthropist, Andrew Carnegie, agrees to give $20,000 to build Newport Library. The project ends up costing $25,000. The Newport Public Library is the first of 23 Carnegie libraries to open in Kentucky.

1902

On June 25, the Carnegie Free Library opens its doors at Fourth Street and Monmouth Street in Newport.

1956

Congress passes the Library Services Act, which paves the way for countywide library systems.

1960s

The Kentucky State Library offers grants to counties that establish countywide systems.

Kenton County Library is established in 1967.

The petition to establish a Campbell County system fails in 1968.

1971

Betty Daniels leads a group of women to establish a two-room library in the Shaw House in Fort Thomas.

1973

The library at Fort Thomas is moved to the former Erschell Funeral Home at 155 N. Ft Thomas Ave.

The Boone County Library is established.

1976

Using grant money from the state, the establishment of demonstration libraries begins.

The basement of the city building in Alexandria is used for a library.

1977

The Newport Library in the Carnegie building opts out of participating in the demonstration but agrees to join forces if it is a success. Instead, the demonstration library is a rented mobile home that is purposed into a library. It is parked free of charge at the Newport Shopping Center.

1978

On September 5, the Campbell County Public Library system (CCPL) is established. More than 51% of the voters signed the petition for a county system. Campbell County Judge Executive Lambert Hehl signs the document and the Library Board meets for the first time.

1979

CCPL purchases the Andrew Carnegie building that is being operated as a city library and takes over library operations.

1984

In November, the Cold Spring Branch is opened and service in the basement of Alexandria’s city building is discontinued.

1987

Major renovations to the Newport Branch in the Carnegie Building include installing air conditioning and moving the children’s department to the second floor.

1995

A new building for the Fort Thomas Branch is built.

CCPL automates its entire collection.

1996

The Cold Spring Branch is expanded to 14,500 sq. feet.

1997

Dial-up internet access becomes available at the Cold Spring Branch.

1998

Broadband internet access becomes available at all three locations.

1999

Fort Thomas is expanded to 15,000 sq. feet, doubling its capacity.

CCPL celebrates 100 years of library service with a celebration at the Carnegie building.

2003

Construction begins for a new Newport Branch.

2004

The Newport Branch, a new 27,000 sq. ft. building, opens May 16.

The first Long Range Plan is created {PDF}

2005

CCPL starts opening on Sundays.

The Long Range Plan is updated {PDF}

2006

The Long Range Plan looks to 2006-2010 {PDF}

2007

Cold Spring Branch reopens after an extensive three-month renovation.

The Long Range Plan is updated {PDF}

2008

Planning begins for the new South Branch in Alexandria.

2012

A lawsuit is filed in January 2012 that challenges the way that Kentucky libraries set annual tax rates, threatening the existence of over 100 county library systems. The lawsuit concludes on Nov. 13, 2018, when the Supreme Court of the United States denies the plaintiff’s petition for a writ of certiorari. With this denial, all avenues of appeal are exhausted. In the seven appearances before the various courts through the nearly seven years of the litigation, no court determined the library to have acted improperly in any regard or that any tax was illegally assessed or collected. For more details, click here.

2014

The CCPL Board approves a new Long Range Plan {PDF}

2015

The library launches its first-ever smartphone app on March 29.

CCPL earns an Exemplary Level when measured against standards set by the Kentucky Public Library Association.

Cam, the library mascot, is introduced to the public at Summer Reading kickoff on June 5.

The Newport Branch undergoes a renovation to add space for meetings and library events.

CCPL launches “Drop Your Drawers at the Library.” The campaign collects new packages of underwear to distribute to children in need through Family Resource Centers at elementary schools throughout the county.

2017

Digital marquees are installed at all three branches on May 3.

The Melbourne Express and Silver Grove Express open May 16.

2018

The Alexandria Branch opens at 8333 Alexandria Pike on January 16.

2019

CCPL joins fives school districts in Campbell County to bring Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library to children under age 5.