Repository:Johnston County Heritage Center (North Carolina)

Repository Johnston County Heritage Center (North Carolina)
Postal Address P.O. Box 2709
Smithfield, NC 27577
Place Johnston, North Carolina, United States
Phone 919-934-2836



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.


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

  • Phone number is (919) 934-2836.
  • Postal address is P.O. Box 2709, Smithfield, NC 27577.
  • Delivery address is 241 E. Market Street.
  • E-mail address is


(e-mail links highlighted)

  • Director: Wingate Lassiter (phone 919-938-4708)
  • Administrative Assistant: Joyce Mitchell
  • Reading Room Assistants: [ Becky Owens], [ Mike Watts], [ Zelda Wood]
  • Exhibit Hall Hosts: Margo Allsbrook, John McPhail, Lucy Washington