The Carnegie Center for Art and History, a branch of the Floyd County Public Library, serves as a cultural resource for the education and enjoyment of the citizens of Floyd County and the surrounding metro area. To fulfill that mission we collect, preserve, and interpret the history and heritage of Floyd County; promote an appreciation of and participation in the visual arts; and preserve the historic Carnegie Library building in which the museum is housed.
Andrew Carnegie, the Scottish-American industrialist, used his vast wealth to fund his passion for free access to education and literacy. In his lifetime he funded thousands of libraries, schools and universities around the world, donating the modern equivalent of more than 76 billion dollars of his fortune.
Indiana is home to more Carnegie libraries than any other state and New Albany is just one town that benefited from Andrew Carnegie’s generosity. Our stunning home was designed by famed Louisville architectural firm of Clark and Loomis, which would later go on to design the Speed Art Museum. Construction on the library began in 1902 and was completed in 1904.
The building served as the town’s library for 65 years. In 1969, New Albany-Floyd County Public Library moved into much larger premises at 180 West Spring Street, where it remains today.
After the newly vacated former library building was threatened with demolition, a group of citizens formed the Floyd County Museum in 1971 as a local history museum and art gallery. The Floyd County Museum was incorporated into the New Albany-Floyd County Public Library in 1988.
After a major renovation in 1998, the museum was renamed the Carnegie Center for Art and History. The name better reflects our library heritage and mission to protect the historic building, to collect, preserve and interpret local history and to promote an appreciation of and participation in the visual arts.
The Carnegie Center for Art and History stands as testament to the dedication of New Albany’s residents – to preserve our town and our region’s past, to educate our children, and to celebrate the arts.
The Carnegie Center is pleased to be a member of the United States National Park Service’s Network to Freedom. The Network to Freedom was implemented with the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom Act of 1998 as an effort to connect and preserve local historical places and museums associated with the Underground Railroad. More information on the Network to Freedom can be found here. The Carnegie Center’s membership in the Network to Freedom strengthens our mission to preserve the history of New Albany and provide that history to a national network.
The Carnegie Center for Art and History is supported by the Indiana Arts Commission
Al Gorman has been on the staff of the Carnegie Center for Art and History since January of 2016. A self-identified visual artist, Gorman has over 35 years experience working in various capacities in the area’s art institutions. Among the places he has worked include a ten year stint as the Curator of the Louisville Visual Art Association while at Louisville’s historic Water Tower. Gorman has also worked at Swanson Gallery, B. Deemer Gallery, Louisville Stoneware, Zoom Group’s StudioWorks program among others. He received his MFA from the University of Cincinnati and his BFA from Murray State University in Murray, KY.
Delesha has been the smiling face of the Center since 2007, but has actually worked with the Library for over 25 years. She’s an avid reader who loves to spend time with her grandkids, and she’s very involved with her church. Not surprisingly, Delesha is also never shy to profess her love for New Albany.
Julie Leidner has been an artist and art educator in the Greater Louisville region for nearly ten years. Five of those years were spent creating and delivering art curriculum at a private progressive high school, but her experience as a teacher spans all ages, including children’s art programs and instructing senior BFA candidates in art and thesis development at area universities. She is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design (MFA, 2010) and has been the recipient of a Great Meadows Foundation Grant, the Hadley Prize, and Kentucky Foundation for Women grants. In her spare time Julie also runs an experimental exhibition space called Sheherazade in a garage in Old Louisville.
The Carnegie Center for Art and History is a branch of the Floyd County Library, governed by the library Board of Trustees.
The Carnegie Center for Art and History, Inc. is a separate non-profit organization that supports the Carnegie Center through fundraising, volunteering, and advocacy.
Ron A. Stiller
Robin L Miller