The Heritage Center preserves the history and material culture of Johnston County for the educational benefit of its citizens and visitors; and it promotes the understanding of and appreciation for its past through interpretive exhibits, programs, and publications.
The Center holds approximately 2,000 books, 800 reels of microfilm, 300 maps/atlases, 50,000 photographic images, 400 private collections of books and papers, and vertical files on genealogy, biography, and local history. Local history materials relate exclusively to Johnston County, while the focus for genealogical records primarily includes the eastern half of North Carolina and the Virginia Tidewater region. Materials for other regions may be available through interlibrary loan. Some records can be found online.
Created in February 1997, the Heritage Center is a department of Johnston County Government, administered by a managing director employed by the county manager and advised by an 18-member Heritage Commission appointed by the County Commissioners. Taxpayers of the County of Johnston provide funding for operations, including personnel, utilities, and maintenance of the building and equipment. Other expenses, including program development and acquisitions, are funded by donations and grants.
HISTORIC HOME BASE
The Heritage Center opened its doors to the public on April 15, 2000 in the completely renovated former home office of First Citizens Bank in the heart of Downtown Smithfield, North Carolina. The new location has space for exhibits, secure artifact storage, and expansion of the widely acclaimed Johnston County Room collection of local history and genealogy that was previously housed in the Public Library of Johnston County and Smithfield.
Location & Parking
The Heritage Center stands on the northwest corner of Market (US 70 Business) and Third streets in Smithfield. Two-hour parking is allowed along adjacent streets. Free all-day parking is available in nearby off-street lots, the largest of which sits behind the Public Library on the east side of North Third Street.
Hours of Operation
The center is open FREE OF ADMISSION CHARGE 9:00-5:00 Monday-Saturday (except weekday holidays observed by the County of Johnston and the Saturday before Easter).
Phone Numbers - Addresses
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