2020 has been a year like none we have ever experienced, but that didn’t stop us from keeping storytelling alive in our schools and community. We worked with professional storytellers to bring the 33rd annual Jackson Storyfest to schools, senior centers, and homes virtually in the form of workshops, storytelling sessions, and the Storyfest Showcase!

All of our prerecorded sessions are available to enjoy until November 18 and can be found below:

Silver Tales: Songs and Stories for the Young at Heart

“Gemini” – twin brothers San and Laz Slomovits, along with special guest Emily – perform a mix of classic songs of the 60s and show tunes from Broadway musicals. To watch, click here.

Storytelling sessions:

Performances by storytellers from around Michigan were shared in local schools for Preschool through 12th grade.

Preschool-K: Karen Bonnici

K-2nd Grade: Robin Nott

K-2nd Grade: Jeff Doyle

3rd-5th Grade: Larry Castleberry

3rd-5th Grade: Genot Picor

6th-8th Grade: Judy Sima

6th-8th Grade: Jenifer Strauss

9th-12th Grade: La’Ron Williams

Storyfest Showcase

The festival culminated with the Storyfest Showcase, featuring eclectic performances by storytellers Jenifer Strauss, Robin Nott, La’Ron Williams, Judy Sima, Kinetic Affect and a musical finale by Jackson’s own Airtight. To watch, click here.

Questions? Contact our Community Engagement Department at

La’Ron Williams, Storyteller

Nationally acclaimed and multiple award-winning storyteller La’Ron Williams shares both original and traditional tales that appeal to a wide range of ages and social backgrounds. His energetic, music-spiced presentations are always fun, highly participatory, educational and entertaining. Every program is specifically designed to promote diversity, foster community building, encourage peaceful conflict resolution and teach a host of “pro-social” skills, including empathy, self-expression and attentive listening. Williams has received high praise for his skill at presenting diversity workshops for adults, helping participants understand the nature of “invisible” bias and moving beyond the emotional stumbling blocks that prevent us from taking collective responsibility for creating a just and equitable society.

Judy Sima, Storyteller, Author, Teaching Artist

Award winning Michigan storyteller, author, and teaching artist, Judy Sima has been delighting audiences since 1987. Judy’s warm, engaging performances combine folk, traditional and modern tales, with humor, song and loads of audience participation. Well known for her highly interactive and practical workshops, Judy has been featured at educational, library, and storytelling conferences across the nation. With over 20 years experience coaching students and adults, she has helped many others become storytellers.

Jenifer Straus – Storyteller, Narrative Consultant

“Let a Story be Told…Let a Story be Heard…Let a Story be told Again”

Dynamic and thought provoking…engaging and enthusiastic…heart-warming and educational…Jenifer Strauss Uses STORY to Enrich Lives! Offering a unique brand of energy-injected performances, workshops, trainings and keynotes, Jenifer shares her own unique blend of  traditional and personal tales to captivate, motivate, and inspire over 300 audiences a year.

As a  former classroom teacher of ten years, Jen discovered that the human brain is hard-wired for story. People think, learn, and imagine in narrative.  In 1993 she combined her passion for teaching and storytelling to found her narrative consulting business, Story Be Told to help educators, organizations, and individuals use story to connect, communicate, and achieve their goals.

Larry Castleberry – Storyteller

Larry Castleberry shares both his personal stories and insight of how the ancient martial art of Aikido can be used to resolve conflict in our daily life (with an emphasis on the day-to-day conflict that we encounter in a corporate setting). This renowned storyteller blends an exciting dynamic speaking style with touching personal stories to connect with the audience and provide them tools that they can immediately apply to resolve conflict.

Robin Nott – Shady Grove Storytelling and Traditional Music

Robin Nott combines storytelling and folk singing to awaken audiences of all ages to their authentic personal imaginative worlds. On the wings of a story and a song, Robin enables listeners to experience new worlds through the eyes of a child; pure, brightly colored, just, wonder-filled, and blessed with song.

Robin Nott has been storytelling and folk singing with audiences of all ages since 1983. Mr. Nott has told stories in schools, libraries, scout programs, state and national parks, churches, conferences, and festivals of all kinds. Robin Nott has been an arts educator for 42 years, has taught Oral Tradition (storytelling) for over 30 years, has directed theater since 1974, and has been a musician since 1964.

Genot Picor – Storyteller

Genot Picor (formerly Piqueur) is a storyteller, musician and dancer. In addition, he is a published free-lance journalist, retired public school teacher consultant and grant writer. Picor holds a Master’s Degree in Theatre Arts/ Interpretive/Performance Studies from Eastern Michigan University, specializing in oral tradition, narrative studies and the anthropology of performance. Genot uses all his talents to bring an interactive frontier history alive to audiences of all ages. His program is ideal for schools, festivals, art shows, museums, libraries and corporations. Each presentation is individually designed to meet the needs and requests of the hosting agency. If you’ve ever seen him perform, you’ll see that he looks and acts the part!

Karen Bonnici – Musician, Storyteller, Teaching Artist, Inventor

Linking her musical and theatrical work with the traditions of storytelling, her performances inspire audiences of all ages. Karen incorporates physical animation, characters, and stories and songs, both old and new to create an enlivening experience. Accompanying herself on the autoharp, she creates an interactive experience for audiences with her unique collection of traditional and original works. Karen’s performances, workshops, and classes for storytelling groups, schools, libraries, story slams, festivals, and more offer “edutainment” through the art of Storytelling.

Jeff Doyle – Storyteller/Humorist

Jeff started telling stories around the campfire at the family campout when his kids were elementary age.  His first story was The Blue Ape, which the kids asked to hear over and over again.  Before long, the kids were requesting new material and Jeff eagerly took to the task, eventually becoming the hit of campfire time. He joined the Ann Arbor Storytellers’ Guild in 2005 and his passion for developing and refining this art form has only intensified with each performance. Jeff enjoys telling all types of tales, but specializes in funny stories and scary stories, which range from the somewhat scary to the truly terrifying.

In October 2006, Jeff organized the very first Scary Story Festival at the Howell Opera House. The actual theater section of the Opera House looks essentially as it did when it closed in 1925. It has a reputation for being haunted and is the perfect venue for the telling of the scariest of stories, which occurs there annually.


@Airtight12 (Facebook)

Kinetic Affect

Kinetic Affect is a nationally-renowned, award winning duo. These highly dynamic keynote speakers and spoken word artists have made a career out of inspiring youth and adults to follow their passions and live life for today. Gabriel Giron, a survivor of cancer and former soldier in the US Army and Kirk Latimer, a survivor of his own destructive past, and former high school English teacher combine their voices to give audiences a truly one-of-a-kind motivational experience that they will NEVER forget.


We would like to offer a special thank you to all the following individuals, businesses, and organizations for their generous donations that allow us to bring Storyfest to the Jackson Community:

Larry Bullen in honor of Laurie LaZebnick

Woodlands Library Cooperative

Friends of the Jackson District Library

American 1 Credit Union

Linda Furgason

David and Gretchen Mikelonis


Louis Glick Memorial & Charitable Trust and Alro Steel Corporation

Gordon and Ellen Heins

Dillon and Associates, Inc. Investment Counsel


Jack Esterline

Jim and Joyce Grace

Jim Lefere

Catherine Nowak

Chuck and Pam Schultz

Jackson County Association of Retired School Personnel

Chris and Kelly Langley in memory of Benjamin Langley

Roy and Lois Kelly

Kurt and Lisa Rudolph

Jack V. Butterfield Investment Co.

Melanie Hilliard and Jason Mortiz

Frederick and Deborah Marshall

Marcia Whitehead

Chad and Jennifer Noble

Edward and Helen Greene

Margaret Tietjen

Janell Houser

Darold and Judy Ebersole

Grants: Jackson Literary & Arts

Meet Your New Library Director!

The Jackson District Library is pleased to announce that Sara Tackett has been appointed as the new director of the library.

The Board of Trustees offered the position to Tackett on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2016 after a two-stage interview process and she was among three candidates considered for the role.

After working for eight years for the Hunterdon County Library in Flemington, New Jersey as a Children’s Librarian, Tackett came to the Jackson District Library in 1998, first as the Coordinator of Youth Programs. She later became the Public Services Administrator and has been acting as interim director after Ishwar Laxminarayan left in January.

“As director I am looking forward to continuing to support the community of Jackson by working to provide a world class library service to all of our residents,” Tackett said.

The JDL Board of Trustees is excited to begin working with our new director and to assist her in implementing her vision of the system moving forward. — board president Darrell Durham.

During her time in Jackson she has helped plan the expansion of the Meijer Branch, developed a library at the Jackson County Youth Center and seen the youth outreach services expand. Tackett has also led Jackson Storyfest for 8 years and serves on the boards of the Community Action Agency and Jackson Great Start. She also is a member of Jackson Business and Professional Women.

Tackett has a Masters of Library Service from Rutgers University in New Jersey and a Bachelors of Anthropology from Indiana University. Tackett and her husband Mike’s family include daughters, Jessica, Betsy, Caroline and Dorothy, son-in-law Lance, a Corgi named Jersey and a black cat named Moonshine.

For questions or more information, please contact the director’s office at 517-788-4099 ext. 1308.

Jackson District Library Receives State Award

The Jackson District Library (JDL) has earned the 2015 Citation of Excellence Award from the State Librarian for its devotion to customer service. The library will receive a trophy and $500 at the Michigan Library Association’s annual conference in Novi on Friday, October 30.

“Year after year, Michigan’s libraries consistently expand services and find new ways to serve their communities,” said Randy Riley, State Librarian in a press release announcing the awards. He added that “the 2015 nominations demonstrate how creative, impactful and diverse libraries are across the state.
Michigan libraries of all types are successfully focusing on what is unique about their communities and are successfully tailoring services to meet those evolving needs.”
JDL is being recognized for being actively involved in moving the community forward through initiatives aimed at education, career development, health improvement, economic and workforce development, and human services. Staff promotes Jackson and champions financial stability across the community.

“This award is a wonderful tribute to the dedication and passion of the more than 150 men and women who work together as part of a well-oiled team to serve the residents of Jackson County,” said JDL Director Ishwar Laxminarayan. Last year Jackson County residents checked out an all-time record high of 1,210,716 items from the library’s collection. Additionally, more residents used the library’s free computers or wireless hotspots and attended programs and other enrichment activities than at any time in the past decade.

“From patiently teaching a small child how to love books gently, to researching economic statistics for a new business start-up, or coaching a senior citizen in how to use a new smart phone or tablet, the Library staff is making a difference in residents’ lives every single day,” added Laxminarayan. “JDL is committed to building on its glorious history and will continually endeavor to inspire our community to discover, learn, and succeed!

Tessa’s Paranormal Romance Review: Burn for Me: A Hidden Legacy Novel by Ilona Andrews

Ilona Andrews is a husband-wife team known for urban fantasy. They already have two great series going: Kate Daniels and The Edge. Both these series start off with some great world-building and entertaining characters. Now the Andrews have another new series which veers more towards romance than the others, although the first two series have elements of romance as well.

Readers have already commented on the cover—it’s misleading. The half-naked man and sexy outfit on the woman would make you think this was a bodice ripper or steamy romance. Instead this book has enough plotting, substance and character that my husband is enjoying it.


This series is set in Houston, where the main character, Nevada, runs a detective agency with her family’s help. But the Houston in the book is way different from our reality: superpowers have appeared, result of a serum created in the 1800’s, and most power and influence resides in the Houses (families) of those who have the greatest powers.

Two catastrophically powerful men are on a collision course as one uses the other’s teenaged nephew to rob a bank. Nevada is employed by the huge detective business that holds her loan—but it’s all for show, since the firm knows she doesn’t have the magic to bring in this incredible fire mage. If she refuses, she loses her home and business, putting her family out on the street. But if she contacts him, he will probably kill her. Nevada must be skilled and wily to get herself out of this situation.

All the books by this team are recommended! Give them a try. ~ Tessa July 2015 3.75 out of 5 stars

The Munificent Gift

Andrew Carnegie circa 1880

Andrew Carnegie circa 1880

Industrialist Andrew Carnegie established the Carnegie Library Fund to create libraries around the country. In 1900, a library committee in Jackson applied. Funding was calculated on a strict formula based on population. The city agreed to purchase the necessary land and provide annual operating funds. Carnegie generously awarded Jackson $50,000, but “JACKSON WANTED A LIBRARY LIKE NONE OTHER.”

Plans went over budget by $20,000.


Old Friends

Mrs. R. H. ( Zelie) Emerson, a member of the Jackson Library Committee, wrote Carnegie, via his secretary, asking for the additional funds to “build the building Jackson deserves.”

Mr. Bertram, The current Library is located on the second floor of a good block on a business street, about in the center of the town. There is no elevator. Its quarters are pleasant, but as it occupies the whole floor; there is no chance of expansion. The book space is cramped, and the reading-room entirely too small for the growing attendance of the public-especially the children who are there in great numbers. The reason my previous letter was not typewritten is that it is in a way a personal letter to Mr. Carnegie. We were old friends in Pittsburgh years ago. Will you kindly see that it meets his eye? — Zelie Passavant Emerson: 1900

Zelie Emerson circa 1880

Zelie Emerson circa 1880

They were indeed old friends. As a young girl, Zelie Passavant and Andrew Carnegie had even spoken of marriage. Her father, William Passavant, a well-known Lutheran minister, objected on religious grounds. Zelie took the train to Pittsburgh to make her case, and in honor of their past friendship, Carnegie granted Jackson an additional $20,000.


My Dear Mr. Carnegie: Two years ago you gave us $70,000 for a Public Library. The City bought a magnificent site on Main Street. The bids overrun the sum given us at least $25,000 owing to the great advance in the cost of materials and labor. Nothing could be done to lessen the cost without cheapening the construction and so spoiling the building. You would not wish us to change it in any single particular. We would deeply appreciate your favorable consideration of this matter. Yours ever sincerely, Zelie Passavant Emerson: Feb. 14, 1903

Mr. Carnegie said “no.”

My dear Mr. Carnegie, believe me that the people of Jackson deeply appreciate your generous gift. The library building in its simple and serene beauty has set a new and high Ideal for public buildings in our town, and its perfect adaptation to all library needs will provide for the city a library home for ½ Century to come. — Zelie Passavant Emerson

The Building is a Peach

The building was due to finish in 1904, but labor unrest and construction problems increased the costs and delayed the opening for two years. The Carnegie building finally opened on August 21, 1906, to great fanfare.

There will be no more jibes and jeers as to when the new library will open its doors. They actually opened Monday morning. It’s safe to say Librarian Waldo was the happiest woman in Jackson. But the building is a peach–and its magnificence and convenience goes far to compensate for the long delay. Hundreds of our townspeople visited the library Monday and Tuesday to inspect its beauty and several ladies left flowers. — Saturday Evening Star: August 1906

Carnegie Building circa 1906

Carnegie Building circa 1906

My grandmother regularly attended the library to upgrade her skills and keep current with what was going on. I remember her taking us there and she told us the whole story of how Mr. Carnegie gave us the money to build the library and it was a place of learning and a place to be revered and held high in esteem in the community. — Interview with Dr. Edward Mathein:2014

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The Collective Good

 Jackson, Michigan circa 1865

Jackson, Michigan circa 1865

In 1854, young businessmen in the Jackson community formed a mutual improvement society. Jackson’s Young Men’s Association (YMA) aimed to address issues of moral and political philosophy.

In its early years, the YMA sponsored debates, provided free public lectures, and attempted to establish a reading room. Strong political feelings of the day prevented the organization from developing further. The political turmoil of the 1850s increased, and fiery debates followed. The desire for libraries, reading rooms, and books was supplanted by talk of slavery, succession, and war.

War did come, and the local militia group, the Jackson Greys, led by William H. Withington answered the call. Talk of libraries would have to wait. The public focused on blow by blow battle descriptions and the fire-eater language of local newspaper editors. Having survived both prison camp and the First Battle of Bull Run, Captain Withington came home a hero. In 1863, he helped revive and formally organize the Young Men’s Association.


The Object of Mutual Improvement — Essentially, a Gentleman’s Club

By early 1864, the YMA had 50 members. Yearly dues were set at $2.00.

The object of this Society shall be the promotion of literary and scientific purposes by means of a library, Reading Room, literary exercise and lectures and such other means as are usually adopted for such purposes. — W. H. Withington: YMA Minutes 1863

In preparation for the opening of their Reading Room, the second floor of the Durand Building on Michigan Avenue was rented at a cost of $65 a year. An additional $45 was spent for tables, a dozen chairs, and a stage. On March 15, 1864 the YMA Reading Room was officially opened. It was essentially a gentlemen’s club. Week nights the janitor lit the gaslights and members came to relax, play a friendly game of chess, read periodicals from as far away as England, and smoke their cigars.

William H. Withington Portrait

William H. Withington

In consequence of the increase in number of those who frequent
the reading room, and the growing taste for reading, the Board
of Directors determined to commence the founding of a library connected with the Association, Young men and boys are asking
for books they cannot afford to buy and few of them have access
to good private libraries. We hope to secure by donations from
citizens from 500 to 1000 Volumes.
— American Citizen: November 7, 1865

Jackson citizens did answer the call with 239 donated books. Books continued to be added to the collection. The library, which officially opened in 1865, was not a true public library because only YMA members had access to the books. Members were expected to read and distribute knowledge to the “young men and boys” in the community. And while women were urged to collect books for the library, they could not join the YMA.


Strategic Plan

Our Strategic Plan 2015 – 2020

Jackson District Library will be a state of the art library system that provides the highest quality collections, services and technology to all Jackson County residents. JDL will strongly support Jackson County’s Strategic Plan to transform our community into one of the nation’s most desirable places to live, work and play for people of all ages, backgrounds and cultures.

  1. Promote lifelong learning and literacy

    JDL will offer programs and services designed to assist children from birth to age five to enter school ready to learn to read, write, and listen. Staff will work extensively with all educational institutions in Jackson County to promote library materials that will help students and teachers succeed in school. Teens and adults will have the resources they need to improve their literacy skills in order to achieve their personal goals and succeed in life.

  2. Engage extensively with community to enhance library services

    JDL will continually seek out partnerships and collaborations with all sectors of the Jackson community to enhance existing services and identify new services to all age groups.

  3. Celebrate our local history and genealogy

    JDL will use the 150th anniversary of public library service in Jackson in 2015 to generate interest and excitement about the library in the community and pursue a leadership role in collecting, digitizing and preserving unique local content.

  4. Support economic and workforce development efforts in Jackson County

    JDL will serve as a stable and powerful resource for individuals, businesses and other organizations striving to build a strong and resilient economy in Jackson County.

  5. Deliver Exceptional Customer Service Experience

    JDL staff will be an engaged, collaborative and well trained team, supported by committed leadership to serve the public in the most effective manner.


JDL’s strategic plan should ultimately reflect community priorities while also addressing critical organizational enhancements needed in order to be successful. Thanks to the efforts of initiatives such as Jackson 2020, an enormous amount of work has already been done in Jackson County to identify community priorities. In our online survey, we asked residents to identify three areas where JDL can make the most impact. Respondents selected Education, Arts, Recreation, and Cultural Opportunities, Community and Social Supports, and Economic Development as their top four choices.

JDL is a founding member of the Cradle2 Career (C2C) collaborative in Jackson County. C2C is the network of education and community leaders working together to achieve common goals in education. C2C believes that all Jackson county students will grow, learn and succeed through the support of the entire community. Working together, C2C is connecting quality, lifelong education to successful employment. Therefore, we identified this area as Strategic Priority # 1.

While residents also saw a big role for us in providing Arts, Recreation, and Cultural Opportunities, we did not identify this as a distinct strategic priority because it is so deeply ingrained into everything we do at JDL and well represented in the other priorities.

JDL staff has repeatedly emphasized the need to engage more extensively with the Jackson community to reach underserved and unserved audiences. Public libraries nationwide are recognizing that this new focus on community engagement is absolutely critical to their long term relevance and success. Survey respondents also identified Community and Social Supports as a key area of focus for JDL. Consequently, we identified this area as Strategic Priority # 2. We continually hear that public libraries nationwide have distinguished themselves in their communities by taking a leadership role in collecting, digitizing and curating unique, local historical documents and other content. In view of the upcoming 150th anniversary of public library service in Jackson, we thought that this would be a perfect time to generate community interest and excitement around this area. This is reflected as Strategic Priority # 3.

It is very important that JDL is seen as a strong and valuable contributor to long term economic and workforce development efforts in Jackson County. JDL is represented in Jackson County’s Economic and Workforce Development Coordinating Council. Public libraries are expanding services to new and existing businesses, delivering fundamental workforce development services, and providing ongoing professional and personal technology training. Everyone benefits from a strong and vibrant local economy. Survey respondents identified Economic Development as an important area for JDL, so we added this as Strategic Priority # 4.
JDL staff provided extremely valuable feedback during the strategic planning process and provided numerous suggestions for enhancing library services. This is reflected in Strategic Priority # 5. Staff suggestions and public comments have been summarized in a document that a staff action team will use to inform their future discussions. JDL leadership is committed to fostering a rich and vibrant organizational culture where every staff member’s opinion and contribution is valued and respected.


Community Partnerships

JDL is proud to work with numerous agencies in Jackson County that are working collectively to address critical needs in our community. They include the Arts and Cultural Alliance of Jackson County, Community Action Agency, Jackson County Chamber of Commerce, Jackson County Intermediate School District, Jackson Storyfest, Marriage Matters Jackson, United Way of Jackson County, educational institutions and municipalities.

Community Conversations

In June of 2015 the Jackson District Library began inviting some of our community partners to speak on Friday mornings about the work they do in Jackson County. Those talks have been recorded and we present them here. The video player below is a YouTube playlist. By clicking PLAYLIST in the upper left-hand corner of the frame, you can select which of the recordings you would like to listen to.

Read more about just a few of the major initiatives we participate in:

  • Jackson County Cradle to Career Network (C2C) In Jackson County, we know that the key to a successful career starts with a great education but quality learning takes more than what goes on inside of a school building, it takes all of us getting involved to help our students grow, learn, and succeed.That’s why Jackson County schools, businesses, organizations, and service agencies have come together as C2C. In working collectively on common goals and milestones, we can build the connection between education and employment for all students, and support a strong educational community.
  • Jackson 2020 Jackson 2020 is collaboratively transforming Jackson County into one of the nation’s most desirable places to live, work and play for people of all ages, backgrounds and cultures.

Support The Library

Donations to the Library


The Jackson District Library is a nonprofit entity that accepts donations from community members, patrons, businesses and foundations. These donations could provide funding for children, teen or adult programs, genealogy or local history, books, audio books, an author visit, branch improvement, or many of our literacy programs. Below are the ways that one can make a direct donation:

By Mail:

Jackson District Library

Attn: Director’s Office

244 W. Michigan Avenue

Jackson, MI 49201



Click on the PayPal button below to make a donation using your PayPal account.  

Types of Donations

In Honor of, or in Memory of someone special

Many donations come to the library in honor or in memory of someone special. Any size gift is welcome and can be used for any of the things listed above. If a specific title is requested for our collection a nameplate can be added to the item. Also, a letter can be sent to a family member letting them know of the donation. Please contact us by email at or by phone at 517-905-1308, to receive information on how this is handled.

Naming the Jackson District Library in a Will or Trust

Please contact the Director’s office for more information by email at or by phone at 517-905-1308.

Jackson’s Historical Newspaper Digital Collection

The Jackson District Library started a project in 2016 to complete its digital archive of the Jackson Citizen Patriot. The newspaper, which was first published under the name the Jackson Citizen in 1849, remains one of Jackson County’s largest news providers. Though the library provides full access to Citizen Patriot materials via microfilm, contributions from library supporters have allowed JDL to expand its digital collection to include the years 1849 through 1881 and 2000 to present day. In the coming years, the library hopes to make ongoing updates to the Citizen Patriot collection.

Amazon “Buy It Now”

Our library catalog offers the option to “Buy It Now”, a simple way to support your local library! When you see the “Buy It Now” button on any item in our catalog, you can purchase that item through Amazon. By clicking the “Buy It Now” button, you will be redirected to and can purchase the item there. When you do this you are automatically donating a portion of your proceeds to Jackson District Library.

Amazon Smile

Amazon shoppers who start at will find the same Amazon they know and love, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the price of eligible purchases to the charity of your choice, including Jackson District Library.

If you are an Amazon shopper (does not have to be Prime) you can follow the directions below to sign up and you only have to do it once! This doesn’t affect the pricing of items, it just gives JDL a donation when the purchase is eligible and complete. Our finance department uses Amazon Smile for all JDL purchases through Amazon.

Here’s how to shop Amazon Smile:

  • Visit
  • Sign in with your credentials
  • Choose Jackson District Library to receive donations
  • Start shopping!
  • Add a bookmark for to make it even easier to return and start your shopping at Amazon Smile
  • You can activate Amazon Smile through the Amazon App on your phone as well!

Volunteer Opportunities:

Another way to give to the library is to volunteer your time! If this is of interest to you, please download a volunteer application or pick one up from the Administration Building, located at 290 West Michigan Avenue (Administration is one building west of the Carnegie library). We will check to see if there is a fit and need given the background and the nature of the volunteer work requested, and someone will be in contact with you.

Friends of the Jackson District Library

The Friends are a group of volunteers who have supported the JDL since 1967 when the library was then the Jackson City Library.  All 13 branches of the JDL have a Friends group, and they are always looking for new members! You can become a member of any of the Friends groups by contacting your local branch or emailing to be connected to the correct group.

The purpose of the Friend of the Jackson District Library is:

  • To maintain an association of persons interested in libraries;
  • To focus public attention on the library;
  • To stimulate the use of the library’s resources and services;
  • To receive and encourage gifts, endowments and bequests to the library,
  • To support and cooperate with the library in developing and maintaining library services and facilities;
  • To lend legislative support where needed; and,
  • To support the freedom to read, as expressed in the American Library Association Bill of Rights.

Media Room

Services Your Jackson District Library Provides


The Media Room

The Carnegie Library celebrated its 106th year with a remodeling and updating of its rear entrance and lower lobby, and the creation of a new Media Room.

The Jackson District Library Media Lab at the Carnegie Branch is open during normal business hours.

Along with more attractive and spacious displays of our materials, the Media Room allows for expansion of our collections and updated technology. DVDs, including new releases, TV series, and children’s materials; Blu-rays; music CDs and video games (Wii, Wii U, PS2, PS3, Xbox 360 and Xbox Kinect formats) are now all located in our Media Room. We’ve also installed eight iMac desktop computers for patron use.

The Carnegie Media Room features eight iMacs for patron use.