The initial move to obtain library services for the City of Mt. Carmel began in 1909 when the members of the Reviewers Matinee made preliminary arrangements of securing money from the Carnegie Fund to build a library building. Mrs. J.M. Mitchell was the President of the Reviewers Matinee at this time and Mrs. Ada Wallace was Chairman of the club’s library committee. To work with the Matinee members, the Mayor, Frank Storckman, in December 1909 appointed for the city a library board of nine members who would conduct the library’s business and management. In January 1910 the Reviewers Matinee purchased property from the Methodist Church and presented it to the city and, with the cooperation of the many interested citizens of Mt. Carmel, was instrumental in securing the money from the Carnegie Fund for the construction of a free public library. Construction began and in June 1911 the building at 120 E. 5th Street was completed. Once the funds were raised to supply book and furnishings, the library was opened to the public in December 1911. The first librarian appointed by the board was Miss Anna Hughes.
The Carnegie Library served Mt. Carmel for many years, however, in the 1960’s the resources outgrew the 1911 building. Land was purchased on the corner of 8th & Mulberry Streets from the Wabash Community Unit School District #348 and funding was obtained to begin construction for the new library. Funding was provided by three major sources: a trust left by a former librarian, a federal grant from the Illinois State Library, and a local fund drive by the Mt. Carmel Woman’s Club. Construction began in 1969 and the new Mt. Carmel Public Library was opened in August 1970. The Library continues today at 727 Mulberry Street to service the residents of the city & county.