The library is responsible for fulfilling the informational, recreational and cultural needs of the community by providing access to a balanced collection of materials in a variety of formats for the community.
Two skid shacks adjacent to the Kodiak Community Center housed the Kodiak Community Library when it was founded in 1946. Years of volunteer operation and minimal city financing followed. In 1953 the Kodiak Public Library Association was established, and this group, along with the City of Kodiak and other interested community organizations and citizens, saw the library move into a small building on the downtown school grounds in 1956. About this time the Rotary Club purchased a site which was deeded to the City of Kodiak for the future home of a new library. On December 8, 1968, the new A. Holmes Johnson Memorial Library was dedicated and named for a local physician who had long been a champion of library service in Kodiak. The building was the result of a blend of Federal, City, and donated funds. The original building, costing $245,000, was expanded with the addition of the audio-visual wing in 1977, the children's wing in 1984, and the Alaska reference room in 1993.
In the late 1990s early discussions and planning began for building a new public library. By 2004 strategic efforts were underway for identifying building needs as the City contracted with design firm USKH, Inc. of Anchorage to conduct a space needs assessment. Thanks to the dedication of several municipal city and borough leaders, community residents, library staff, and, members of the revitalized Kodiak Public Library Association a rigorous pre-development process sponsored by the Rasmuson Foundation and facilitated by The Foraker Group began in May 2009. By April 2010 City Council passed Resolution No. 2010-11, "Supporting the City-owned the "Barn Site" as the preferred location for a new public library."
In October 2013, the A. Holmes Johnson Memorial Library on Lower Mill Bay Road officially closed. The Kodiak Public Library on Egan Way opened its doors in December 2013. The passage of time has not changed the library's commitment to serving the informational and recreational needs of the community in a vibrant, responsive way.
Any permanent resident of the Kodiak Island Borough area is eligible for a library card. New patrons are asked to show two pieces of identification with their current Kodiak mailing address. We require parental permission for children ages 14 and younger to acquire library cards.
A Visitor Card is available for a fee of $10 for persons not able to demonstrate permanent Kodiak residency. Eligible visitors must present any valid photo identification, provide a permanent resident address, provide a telephone number or e-mail address, and, sign the application form. The $10 Visitor Card fee covers the July through June fiscal year.
Circulation Loan Periods
DVD's and CD's check out for one-week. All other library materials circulate for three weeks. Extended loan periods may be arranged at the time of check-out for persons who will be in remote locations.
All library fines are ten cents per day per item.
A patron's borrowing privileges and service access are restricted when they owe $5.00 or more in fines, or when they have been billed for replacement costs of materials.
In addition to over 70,000 books, the library checks out:
- AV Equipment
- Compact discs
- Computer Software
Available for use in the library are over 200 magazines and newspapers, vertical file materials, State of Alaska documents and maps.
Children of all ages are welcome at the library. We remind parents and caregivers that the library is a public building and that library staff do not provide babysitting or daycare services. Children up to 10 years of age must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver.
In addition to a wide variety of children's library materials that may be borrowed, special programs are designed for our younger patrons. They include:
- Age-specific story time series for infants, toddlers, and four and five year olds
- Monthly craft sessions
- Summer reading collection and programs
- School tours, orientations and specific resource sessions
- Family Game Times
- Seasonal educational and cultural events
Reserving Library Facilities
The library's multi-purpose room, craft room, small conference room and outdoor patio are available for use by individuals and organizations for meetings and events within the library's guidelines. To inquire about reserving library space please contact the library director, Katie Baxter, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 486-8688. Please indicate contact information, purpose, date(s), time, room arrangement, and, any technical or special support you may need for your event. A rental fee applies to for-profit groups, educational groups charging student fees, and corporate trainings or conference proceedings.
Four study rooms are available on a first-come, first-serve basis to people ages 14 and up. Please check at the circulation desk for study room availability. Two rooms accommodate a maximum of four people; two rooms accommodate a maximum of two people per room.
Interlibrary loan is a special service that allows patrons to borrow from libraries all over the U.S. and sometimes beyond. Suggestions for purchase made by patrons are given careful consideration.
Equipment that patrons may borrow for a 48-hour period:
- Slide projector, viewer, & sorter
- Media Projector
- Viewing screens
- Overhead projector
Available for in-house use:
- Microfiche & Microfilm reader
- Large Scanner
- Photocopy machine - 20 cents/copy
- Public-use FAX - Recieving $1.00/page, Sending $3.00/first page, $2.00/page any additional pages.
Library patrons have direct access to a collection of online databases and periodical indexes in SLED, the State Library Electronic Doorway. This online resource allows access to thousands of electronic periodicals and newspapers that the Kodiak Public Library does not store on its shelves. Patrons who have Internet access at home may also utilized these databases. Ask a librarian for more information.
Public-use Internet computers and free Wi-Fi are available to both visitors and library card holders.