The Mississippi County Library District, established in 1945, is located in Southeast Missouri adjacent to the Mississippi River, and consists of the Clara Drinkwater Newnam Library in Charleston and the Mitchell Memorial Branch Library in East Prairie. The library offers a variety of services to help meet the information needs of residents. The headquarters in Charleston also serves as a regional genealogy center.
In 1994 the library in Charleston received a $575,000 gift from the trustees of the Clara Newnam estate to purchase a site and construct a 7,500 square foot building. The new building offers a meeting room for clubs and organizations and public access computers connected to the Internet for all county residents to utilize.