The Mooney Art Gallery contains 77 old master prints from the private collection of benefactor Arthur Mooney.

Not to be confused with mass produced art prints, almost all were created  by their artists from conception to final completion.

The prints represent a glimpse into 500 years of printmaking, encompassing three continents and various techniques. Famous artists represented in the gallery include Rembrandt, Grant Wood and Albrecht Dürer.

The gallery is free and open to the public during library hours. Special times and group tours may be arranged by calling the library at 641-257-6319 or by email

The print collection is best seen in person. A guided audio tour is     available which  provides background on the artist, subject and printmaking techniques used. Visitors may access the tour through their own devices or through a tablet provided by the library for this use.

For those unable to visit in person, the collection may also be seen online at

History of the Mooney Collection

Given to the library in 1941, the print collection was unframed and kept in storage until the late 1990s. At this time, the prints were framed and the collection loaned out to various galleries.
In 2000 with funds from the Andres Memorial Fund and community donors the library added a gallery space to permanently house the collection.

In 2014 the library created a guided audio and video tour and designed informative signage to make the collection more accessible to the public. This project was funded with a Hotel Motel Tax Grant.

Arthur Mooney

Arthur Mooney (pictured at left) gave the library his personal  collection of art prints.

Orphaned at age 12, he was taken in by a local  photographer who inspired Mooney to study art and photography.  Although he spent most of his adult life in New York, Mooney never forgot Charles City.

In remembering the people and his childhood spent in Charles City, he said, “ the distant days and the people who were so kind in many ways”

Recommended Reading on the Artists

Want to learn more? Check these out

Please edit the tile to add the code to be embedded.

This resource is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by State Library of Iowa.