County Courthouses of Georgia Thread!

Discussion in 'Southeast, The Lair of the Dragon - The Blue Ridge' started by jub jub, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. jub jub

    jub jub frumiousbandersnatch

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    I've been thinking about doing this for awhile now. I would like to showcase all the courthouses in the State of Georgia into one thread. There are 159 counties in Georgia, second only to Texas which has 254. Many of the old courthouses are being replaced with newer, more modern structures. In an effort to preserve some of Georgia's history, I'd like for anyone who can, to take a picture of your courthouse and post it here. You can have your motorcycle in the picture if you want, it's up to you. Since this is a motorcycle forum, I like showing mine off. :D

    Please, post one courthouse per post, and put the name of the county and city in the header block. Also, post a little history of the county if you can such as the day it was established, etc. This info is readily available from Wikipedia.

    Use this map to see if the county you want has already been added. Current tagged counties are in yellow. You don't have to live in a particular county to add to this thread.

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    MISSION COMPLETE!
    #1
  2. jub jub

    jub jub frumiousbandersnatch

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    Location: Perry

    Date Built: 2000-2002

    Architectural Style: Modern

    Designer: HDR Architecture; JMA Architecture; and Hayes, Michael + Associates Architecture

    Other Information: An act of Dec. 24, 1821 organizing Houston (pronounced "HOUSE - ton") County authorized the five justices of the county's inferior court to select a county seat and provide for erection of a courthouse and jail (Ga. Laws 1821, p. 44). Until a courthouse could be build, court sessions were to be held at such places as designated by the inferior court. It is not clear what served as Houston County courthouse for the next three decades. In Mar. 1856, the legislature authorized Houston County to levy a special tax in 1856 and 1857 to finance construction of a new courthouse and jail (Ga. Laws 1855-56, p. 547). This new courthouse may be the one seen in a photograph taken at some time prior to 1907 (see photo). This structure was replaced by a new courthouse in 1948 (see photo). Because of the need for a larger and more modern facility, Houston County voters approved a special-purpose local option sales tax to fund construction of a new courthouse in Perry. Construction of the new courthouse began in 2000, with the new courthouse dedicated in November 2002.

    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here

    County History: Houston County was created on May 15, 1821 by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1821 Extra. Session, p. 3). [Click here to read the legal description of Houston County's original boundaries.] Dooly, Houston, Monroe, Fayette, and Henry County were created in that order by the Georgia Land Lottery Act of 1821 (see text), which was enacted at a special session of the General Assembly four months after the Creek Indians ceded lands between the Ocmulgee and Flint rivers (see map) on Jan. 8, 1821 in the first Treaty of Indian Springs. Houston County was organized by an act of the legislature approved Dec. 24, 1821 (Ga. Laws 1821, p. 44). Later, portions of Houston County were used to create the following counties: DeKalb, Bibb, Pike, and Crawford (1822); Macon (1837); and Peach (1924).

    Georgia's 49th county was named for Gov. John Houstoun (1744-1796).

    County Seat: The Dec. 24, 1821 act organizing Houston County authorized the justices of the inferior court to select the location of the county seat. In 1823, Houston County's inferior court designated land lot 49 in the tenth district as the site of the county seat. On Dec. 21, 1823, the legislature designated this site as permanent county seat and named it Perry (Ga. Laws 1823, p. 172). The name honored U.S. Navy Capt. Oliver H. Perry, who defeated the British in the Battle of Lake Erie. On Dec. 9, 1824, the legislature incorporated Perry as a town (Ga. Laws 1824, p. 148).

    The old courthouse.

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  3. jub jub

    jub jub frumiousbandersnatch

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    New Courthouse

    Location: Cordele

    Date Built: 1950

    Architectural Style: Modern

    Designer: Bernard A. Webb

    Other Information: Crisp County's first courthouse, a two-story brick structure, was built in 1907. After this building burned in 1950, the present courthouse was built the same year.

    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here

    County History: Crisp County was created from Dooly County on Aug. 17, 1905 by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1905, p. 52). [Click here to see a legal description of Cook County's boundaries.] Georgia's 138th county was named for Charles F. Crisp (1845-1896). Crisp served as Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1883 until his death.

    County Seat: The 1905 act creating Crisp County designated Cordele as county seat. Cordele originated as a railroad station in 1888. Subsequently, it was incorporated as a town by the General Assembly in an act of Dec. 22, 1888 (Ga. Laws 1888, p. 209). The town was named for Cordelia Hawkins, daughter of Samuel Hawkins, president of the Savannah, Americus and Montgomery Railroad.

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    Old Courthouse

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  4. jub jub

    jub jub frumiousbandersnatch

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    Location: Macon

    Date Built: 1924

    Architectural Style: Neoclassical Revival

    Designer: Curran R. Ellis

    Other Information: This is Bibb County's fourth courthouse. The first was a one-room building built in 1825, the second was a brick building constructed in 1828. The third was a large, three-story structure with a clock tower, completed in 1870 [see postcard 1, postcard 2, and postcard 3]. The current courthouse was completed in 1924 [see postcard 4.] A jail was added to the top floor in 1926; the entire structure was remodeled in 1940 as a WPA project. The lobby floors are made of marble.

    County History: Bibb County was created on Dec. 9, 1822, by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1822, p. 21). Georgia's 55th county was created from portions of Houston, Jones, Monroe, and Twiggs counties and named for Georgia-born Dr. William Bibb, who was the first elected governor of Alabama.

    County Seat: Macon [named after former U.S. Speaker of the House and then U.S. Senator from North Carolina Nathaniel Macon -- presumably because of the number of North Carolina settlers who moved into the area following the 1821 Treaty of Indian Spring, in which the Creeks ceded lands between the Ocmulgee and Flint rivers; created and designated county seat of Bibb County on Dec. 23, 1822, and incorporated Dec. 8, 1823]

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  5. sdthorpe

    sdthorpe Adventurer... yeah right!

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    This is a wonderful idea!! I'm working out of state till next month, but am looking forward to contributing as soon as possible!!
    #5
  6. jub jub

    jub jub frumiousbandersnatch

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    Thanks! I was beginning to think my idea fell on deaf ears. :clap
    #6
  7. GAVic

    GAVic Largely unnoticed

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    Macon County Courthouse Oglethorpe GA.

    Macon County was created in 1837 from Houston and Marion counties, effective December 14 of that year. The 91st county, it was named for the recently deceased General Nathaniel Macon of North Carolina, who served in the U.S. Congress for 37 years and ran for U.S. vice president. (The city of Macon, Georgia was also named for him, but is actually the seat of another county.) Parts of the county were used to create Taylor and Peach counties, in 1852 and 1924 respectively.

    You should update the OP with which counties have been done.

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    #7
  8. jub jub

    jub jub frumiousbandersnatch

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    Thanks. I've actually started a map. I'll add the link to my first post.
    #8
  9. Mr&MrsErnbo

    Mr&MrsErnbo ...

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    I like it, great idea and I too have thought of this. There should be a lot of courthouses due to the number of counties, 159 I think it is.
    #9
  10. Mr&MrsErnbo

    Mr&MrsErnbo ...

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    Liberty County in the town of Hinesville

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    Location: Hinesville
    Date Built: 1926
    Architectural Style: Neoclassical Revival
    Designer: J.J. Baldwin
    Other Information: Following its creation, Liberty County went many years without a courthouse. In 1791, the legislature named commissioners to construct a courthouse and jail in Sunbury, but apparently no courthouse was built. Six years later, the legislature moved the county seat from Sunbury to Riceborough. An 1836 act moving the county seat from Riceborough to a site known as the General Parade Ground authorized the sale of the jail at Riceborough but made no mention of a courthouse. Jordan and Puster indicate that the first known courthouse was a wooden structure built in 1849. They record that this building was replaced by a second courthouse built in 1867. The present two-story brick courthouse was built in 1926, with extensive wings added in 1965.
    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here
    <center>[​IMG] </center> County History: The land that would form Liberty County was ceded to the English by the Creeks in the Treaty of Savannah on May 21, 1733, confirmed and expanded by agreements of 1735 and 1736. By an act of March 15, 1758, the colonial legislature created seven parishes. With the outbreak of the American Revolution, Whig forces took control of government in Georgia. On Feb. 5, 1777, they adopted the state's first constitution -- the Constitution of 1777. Art. IV of that document transformed the existing colonial parishes into seven counties, with Indian ceded lands forming an eighth county. Liberty County, which was sixth on the list and thus is considered Georgia's sixth county, consisted of all of Saint John, Saint Andrew, and Saint James parishes (see map). The county was named to recognize the American colonies' declaration of independence from British rule.
    In 1789, the legislature took land from Liberty County to enlarge Glynn County. Legislators created McIntosh County (1793) and Long County (1920) from Liberty County. Also, between 1794 and 1871, there were a number of acts shifting small amounts of land between Liberty and McIntosh counties.
    County Seat: Hinesville. In 1784, the legislature designated Sunbury county seat of Liberty County. However, Sunbury's location on the coast was inconvenient for most residents of Liberty County, so the legislature in 1797 designated a new county seat farther inland that would be named Riceborough. In less than 40 years, a movement had been launched to move the county seat again. In 1836, a referendum was held in Liberty County on the location of the county seat, and a majority of voters supported changing it from Riceborough. As a result, Liberty County's state senator, Charlton Hines, introduced legislation at the 1836 session of the General Assembly to establish a new county seat within one mile of a place known as the General Parade Ground (also referred to in the act as "Azoucks' old field"), which was located about 18 miles to the northwest of Riceborough. The legislation, approved on Dec. 30, 1836, also named a five-member commission with authority to select a site for construction of a courthouse, jail, and other public buildings, and to lay out and sell town lots. In 1837, the new county seat was named Hinesville in honor of Sen. Hines, who had made it possible. In 1916, the legislature incorporated Hinesville.

    From the back

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    Liberty County Profile

    Incorporated:
    February 5, 1777
    #10
  11. Mr&MrsErnbo

    Mr&MrsErnbo ...

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    Location: Covington
    Date Built:1884
    Architectural Style: Second Empire
    Designer:Bruce & Morgan
    [​IMG] Other Information:The Dec. 1821 legislation creating Newton County authorized the county's first inferior court to purchase up to 202.5 acres for locating a courthouse and jail and laying out town lots, the sale of which would go toward the expense of erecting public buildings. Until a courthouse could be built, the legislation provided that elections and court sessions be held at the house of Martin Robb. Jordan and Puster report that a one-room log courtroom was built at Brick House (ten miles east of present-day Covington) in 1822 at a total price of $62. A two-room log courtroom was built in Covington -- probably in 1822 or 1823. Possibly, this structure was replaced by a more substantial courthouse. In any event, the building serving as courthouse burned on the final day of 1883. The current courthouse was built on the site of its predecessor in 1884

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    The sidewalk in front is full of history too
    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here
    County History: Newton County was created from Henry, Jasper, and Walton counties on Dec. 24, 1821 by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1821, p. 38). Georgia's 53rd county was named for Revolutionary War hero Sgt. John Newton (1755-1780). The area that became Newton County originally was Creek Indian lands ceded by the Treaty of Fort Wilkinson (1802), Treaty of the Creek Agency (1818), and Treaty of Indian Springs (1821).
    County Seat: The 1821 legislation creating Newton County authorized the justices of the inferior court, when elected, to choose a central site in the new county for designation as county seat. Election of Newton County's first inferior court did not take place until sometime in 1822. A settlement known as Brick House (so-called because the first brick building in the area had been built here) served briefly as the first county seat of Newton County. A one-room log courthouse was built here in early 1822, and the county's first court session was held here in April 1822. However, the inferior court selected a new community ten miles to the west known as Newtonsborough (soon renamed Covington) as county seat. An 1822 Georgia map shows Covington as the county seat and only named community in Newton County. In December 1822, Covington was incorporated by the legislature. The town's name honored Leonard Covington (1768-1813), a U.S. Army officer who had served at Fort Recovery in southwest Georgia in 1794 and was killed during the War of 1812.
    #11
  12. jub jub

    jub jub frumiousbandersnatch

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    Thanks Ernbo for your contribution! :clap
    #12
  13. Mr&MrsErnbo

    Mr&MrsErnbo ...

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    Location: Millen
    Date Built: 1910
    Architectural Style: Neoclassical Revival
    Designer: L.F. Goodrich

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    [​IMG] Other Information: It is not clear what served as courthouse for the first five years of Jenkins County's existence, but likely it was rented office space. Construction of the county's current courthouse was completed in 1910.
    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here
    County History: Jenkins County was created on Aug. 17, 1905 by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1905, p. 57). Formed from portions of Bulloch, Burke, Emanuel, and Screven counties, Jenkins County's original boundaries were specified as:
    Beginning at a point in Burke county in the middle of the railroad track one mile west of the public road which crosses the Central of Georgia railway track at the station of Herndon, and running thence in a straight line to a point one-quarter (?) of a mile west and one-quarter (?) of a mile north of the Henry Wilkes-Jones (now occupied by Robert Law) dwelling house; thence in a straight line to the center of the crossing of the Savannah and Louisville and Waynesboro and Herndon public roads; thence in a straight line to a point one mile north of Perkins station on the Augusta and Savannah railroad; from thence in a straight line to the confluence of the streams that form Beaver Dam creek; from thence down said creek to where it crosses from Burke into Screven county; from thence in a straight line to the Ogeechee river, said line passing one and a half miles by the railroad track below the railroad depot at Scarboro, a station on the Central of Georgia railway in Screven county; thence down the Ogeechee river to a point one hundred (100) feet above Capps incorporated bridge; from thence in a straight line to the northwest corner of Lockhart (46th district line), Bulloch county; from thence a straight line to Johnson's crossing on the Millen and Southwest railroad in Emanuel county, and from thence a straight line to the starting point in Burke county.
    On Aug. 17, 1906, the General Assembly amended the 1905 act to correct "a manifest error in the description of the boundary between Jenkins, Bulloch and Emanuel counties . . ." (Ga. Law. 1906, p. 83). According to the 1906 amendment:
    That, beginning in the first section of said Act in the twenty-fourth line thereof after the words "Capp's incorporated bridge," the language, "from thence in a straight line to the northwest corner of Lockhart (46th district), Bulloch county; from thence in a straight line to Johnson's crossing on the Millen and Southwestern Railroad in Emanuel county," be stricken for the reason it was not the intention of the Legislature to use said language, and substitute in lieu thereof the line as agreed on between the counties at interest, "from thence a straight line to a dead pine tree on the Moore public road, near the dwelling-house of L. C. Lanier; from thence in a straight line to Johnson's crossing on the Millen and Southwestern Railroad in Emanuel county."
    Georgia's 140th county was named for former governor Charles Jenkins (1805-1883), who served from 1865-1868.
    County Seat: The 1905 act creating Jenkins County designated Millen as county seat. Millen originated as a railroad station originally named "Seventy Nine," as it was 79 miles from Savannah.

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  14. Mr&MrsErnbo

    Mr&MrsErnbo ...

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    Location: Abbeville
    Date Built: 1903
    Architectural Style: Neoclassical Revival
    Designer: Frank P. Milburn

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    [​IMG] Other Information: Wilcox County's first courthouse was a wooden building constructed in 1858. This lasted until the current three-story, brick courthouse was built in 1903 (see early photo).
    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here
    County History: Wilcox County was created from Dooly, Irwin, and Pulaski counties on Dec. 22, 1857 by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1857, p. 46). [Click here to read legal description of Wilcox County's original boundaries.]
    Wilcox County was named for Gen. Mark Wilcox (1799-1850), who fought in the Indian wars. On three different occasions (1825-28, 1832-34, and 1842-43), Wilcox represented Telfair County in the Georgia House of Representatives, where he worked for creation of the Georgia Supreme Court.
    In 1905 and 1906 respectively, portions of Wilcox County were used to create Turner and Ben Hill counties.
    County Seat: The act creating Wilcox County provided for election of county officials on the first Monday of March 1858. After that election, the new justices of the county's inferior court were authorized to select "some central and convenient place" within the county for use as the county seat, to lay out the site into lots and streets, and to arrange for construction of a courthouse and other public buildings. Reportedly, David Fitzgerald donated 60 acres near the Ocmulgee River for use as the county seat. While this meant that the county seat would be on the county's eastern boundary, the inferior court accepted the land donation. The town that grew up around the courthouse was known as Abbeville, a name variously attributed to Abbie Fitzgerald (wife of the land donor), to Abbie McNally, and to the Abbeville District in South Carolina.
    Criticism of Abbeville's location prompted the General Assembly on Sept. 27, 1879 to enact legislation allowing any taxpayer in Wilcox County to challenge in court whether Abbeville's location complied with the 1857 act requiring that the county seat be in a central and convenient place (Ga. Laws 1878-79, p. 409). Apparently, no serious challenge resulted. On Sept. 15, 1883, the legislature incorporated Abbeville as a town.
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  15. Mr&MrsErnbo

    Mr&MrsErnbo ...

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    Location: Soperton
    Date Built: 1920
    Architectural Style: Neoclassical Revival
    Designer: J.J. Baldwin
    Other Information: This courthouse, the only one in county history, was completed in 1920 and renovated in 1976.
    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here
    [​IMG] County History: On Aug. 21, 1917, the General Assembly proposed a constitutional amendment to create Treutlen County from Emanuel and Montgomery counties (Ga. Laws 1917, p. 44). In the next general election, Georgia voters ratified the proposed amendment on Nov. 5, 1918, which marks the date of Treutlen County's creation (although a state historical marker on the courthouse grounds incorrectly cites the county's creation as the day the legislative act proposing the constitutional amendment was approved).
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    Why was Treutlen County created by constitutional amendment instead of an act of the General Assembly? In 1904, Georgia voters had approved a constitutional amendment limiting the number of counties in the state to 145. The next year, the General Assembly created eight new counties, bringing the total number to 145 -- the constitutional limit. Nevertheless, there was continuing pressure to create more counties. Beginning in 1906, lawmakers got around the 145-county limitation by creating new counties through constitutional amendments that were not subject to the limitation. By 1924, Georgia had 161 counties -- 16 of which had been created by constitutional amendment. On Jan. 1, 1932, Milton and Campbell counties merged with Fulton, leaving 159 counties. In 1945, Georgia voters ratified a new constitution -- one which provided an absolute limit of 159 counties, with an additional provision (see text) that no new country could be created except through consolidation of existing counties.
    Georgia's 154th county was named for John A. Treutlen (c.1730 - 1782). Treutlen served one term (1777-1778) as Georgia's first state governor following adoption of the Constitution of 1777.
    County Seat: Soperton [named for a railroad construction engineer whose last name was Soper; incorporated Dec. 17, 1902 as part of Montgomery County; designated county seat in Aug. 21, 1917 proposed constitutional amendment and ratified by the voters Nov. 5, 1918].
    #15
  16. Mr&MrsErnbo

    Mr&MrsErnbo ...

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    Location: Forsyth
    Date Built: 1896
    Architectural Style: High Victorian Eclectic
    Designer: Bruce & Morgan

    [​IMG] Other Information: Monroe County's first courthouse, built in Forsyth in 1825, served the county until torn down in 1895 or 1896. The present two-story, brick courthouse was completed in 1896 (see photo 1 and photo 2). The clock tower was restored in 1990.
    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here
    County History: Monroe County was created on May 15, 1821 by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1821 Extra. Session, p. 3). [Click here to read the legal description of Monroe County's original boundaries.] Dooly, Houston, Monroe, Fayette, and Henry County were created in that order by the Georgia Land Lottery Act of 1821, which was enacted at a special session of the General Assembly four months after the Creek Indians ceded lands between the Ocmulgee and Flint rivers (see map) on Jan. 8, 1821 in the first Treaty of Indian Springs. Monroe County was organized by an act of the legislature approved Dec. 24, 1821 (Ga. Laws 1821, p. 44).
    Georgia's 50th county was named for James Monroe, who was President of the United States when the county was created.
    Portions of Monroe County were used to create the following counties: Bibb and Pike (1822), Butt (1825), and Lamar (1920).
    County Seat: The Dec. 24, 1821 act organizing Monroe County authorized the justices of the inferior court to select the location of the county seat (Ga. Laws 1821, p. 44). An act of Dec. 23, 1822 designated the inferior court as a commission to select a county seat, "which shall be as near the centre of the county as convenience will admit" (Ga. Laws 1822, p. 23). Initially, the legislation directed that Monroe County courts and elections be held at the house of Henry H. Lumkin. Subsequently, those inferior court chose lot 171 in the sixth district of Monroe County. Here, they purchased 202.5 acres from John Booth on Feb. 18, 1823, and directed that a town be laid out. The new county seat was named Forsyth, in honor of Georgia politician and diplomat John Forsyth (1780-1840) In an act of Dec. 10, 1823, the legislature confirmed this action by designating Forsyth permanent county seat and incorporating it as a town (Ga. Laws 1823, p. 198).
    #16
  17. Mr&MrsErnbo

    Mr&MrsErnbo ...

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    Location: Quitman
    GPS Coordinates: 30.78526, 83.56003
    Date Built: 1859-1864, extensively remodeled 1892
    Architectural Style: Renaissance Revival/Romanesque Revival
    Designer: John Wind (1859) and Bruce & Morgan (1892)
    Other Information: In Jan. 1859, a month after the creation of Brooks County, the home of Thomas Folsom in Quitman was used as the county's first court room. Subsequently, a temporary courthouse was built. Later in 1859, work began on a permanent courthouse. With the outbreak of the Civil War, work preceded slowly, especially after the contractor died in 1862. The courthouse was not finished until 1864. In 1892, the courthouse underwent extensive renovation. [See postcard 1, postcard 2, and postcard 3 for photos of the courthouse in the early 1900s before the red brick building was painted white.]
    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here
    [​IMG] County History: Brooks County was created by an act of the General Assembly approved on Dec. 11, 1858 (Ga. Laws 1858, p. 353). Created from portions of Lowndes and Thomas counties, Georgia's 131st county was named for South Carolina congressman Preston Brooks, an ardent supporter of states' rights.
    County Seat: Quitman. The act creating Brooks County directed the judges of the inferior court to select a site within four miles of the center of the new county for erection of public buildings. The act further directed that the new county seat be named Quitman. The name honored Gen. John Quitman, former governor of Mississippi, American hero in the Mexican War, and Mississippi congressman at the time ofhis death in July 1858. Inferior court judges picked a site on the railroad connecting southwestern Georgia with Savannah. Quitman was incorporated by an act of the General Assembly approved Dec. 19, 1859.
    #17
  18. Mr&MrsErnbo

    Mr&MrsErnbo ...

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    Location: Monticello
    Date Built: 1907-08
    Architectural Style: Neoclassical Revival
    Architect: T.F. Lockwood, Sr.

    [​IMG] Other Information: The first "courthouse" in this county was actually the home of a citizen - John Towns - where public business was first done. The second courthouse was a log cabin built in 1809. In 1838, a three-story brick courthouse was built [see postcard]. This structure served until 1907, when construction began on the current courthouse. It is constructed of Georgia marble and brick, with four columns along the front and an eight-sided, domed clock tower. In the 1990s, the size of the courthouse was doubled when an extension was built to the rear of the buiding
    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here
    County History: Originally named Randolph County, Jasper County was created from Baldwin County on Dec. 10, 1807 by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1807, p. 3). Georgia's 31st county was named for Virginia congressman John Randolph (1773-1833), whose political views were popular in Georgia. On Dec. 10, 1810, a legislative act renamed the county because of Randolph's opposition to the War of 1812 (though eventually he was forgiven and in 1828 would be recognized by having another new Georgia county named in his honor). On this day, the county became Jasper County in honor of Revolutionary War hero Sgt. William Jasper, who during the siege of Savannah was mortally wounded while retrieving his regiment's flag from the British. [See statute of Jasper].
    In 1821, a portion of Jasper County was used to create Newton County.
    County Seat: Monticello [named for Thomas Jefferson's Virginia home; created as county seat Dec. 10, 1808; and incorporated by the legislature on Dec. 15, 1810].
    #18
  19. jub jub

    jub jub frumiousbandersnatch

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    Thanks for the nice contribution Ernbo! So there is like only 146 left! :lol3
    #19
  20. Mr&MrsErnbo

    Mr&MrsErnbo ...

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    Paulding County courthouses old and new in Dallas, Ga

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    <table border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="2" height="211" width="408"><tbody><tr><td width="70%">Location: Dallas
    Date Built: 1892
    Architectural Style: Queen Anne
    Designer: Bruce & Morgan

    </td> <td width="30%"> <center>[​IMG] </center> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> Other Information: According to the 1832 legislation creating Paulding County, county elections and court sessions were to be held at the house of John Witcher until the county's inferior court should designate a county seat and provide for construction of a courthouse. At some point thereafter, a courthouse was built in the county seat of Van Wert -- but reportedly this structure later burned. Presumably, a second courthouse was built in Van Wert. Dallas became the new county seat in late Dec. 1851 or early 1852. Sometime between 1852 and 1855, Paulding County officials borrowed the money to build a new courthouse, as evidenced by an act of Feb. 16, 1856, authorizing the county to levy a special tax to pay off the courthouse debt (Ga. Laws 1855-56, p. 545). The present courthouse was built in 1892. (see early photo). The building was renovated 1956, 1984-85, and 1991. A new three-story, red brick courthouse annex was completed in 1990. In March 2001, the 1892 courthouse was the target of arson. Although the building survived, the district attorney's office was destroyed. As a result of the fire, Paulding County courts were forced to find meeting space outside the courthouse.
    County Courthouse Historical Marker: Click here
    County History: Paulding County was created from Cherokee County on Dec. 3, 1832 by an act of the General Assembly (Ga. Laws 1832, p. 56). [Click here for complete text of legislation.] According to the 1832 act :
    . . . so much of the first, second and third districts of the third section, as lies west of the line herein-before designated, and eighteenth, nineteenth, twentieth, twenty-first districts of the third section, and the first, second and seventeenth districts of the fourth section, shall form and become one county, to be called Paulding.
    In way of background, by 1830, the Cherokee Nation consisted of most of northwest Georgia (see map), plus adjoining areas in Alabama, Tennessee, and North Carolina. Even while Cherokee Indians remained on their homeland in Georgia, the General Assembly on Dec. 21, 1830 enacted legislation claiming "all the Territory within the limits of Georgia, and now in the occupancy of the Cherokee tribe of Indians; and all other unlocated lands within the limits of this State, claimed as Creek land" (Ga. Laws 1830, p. 127). The act also provided for surveying the Cherokee lands in Georgia; dividing them into sections, districts, and land lots; and authorizing a lottery to distribute the land. On Dec. 26, 1831, the legislature designated all land in Georgia that lay west of the Chattahoochee River and north of Carroll county as "Cherokee County" (see map) and provided for its organization (Ga. Laws 1831, p. 74). However, the new county was not able to function as a county because of its size and the fact that Cherokee Indians still occupied portions of the land. On Dec. 3, 1832, the legislature added areas of Habersham and Hall counties to Cherokee County, and then divided the entire area into nine new counties -- Cass (later renamed Bartow), Cobb, Floyd, Forsyth, Gilmer, Lumpkin, Murray, Paulding, and Union -- plus a reconstituted and much smaller Cherokee County.
    Georgia's 89th county was named for John Paulding (1759-1818), who was a hero of the American Revolution. In 1780, Paulding assisted in the capture of Major John André, a British spy planning the seizure of West Point.
    In 1851, part of Paulding County was used to help create Polk County. Also, between 1832 and 1874 -- but particularly during the 1850s -- portions of Paulding County were annexed to Bartow, Campbell, Carroll, Cobb, Douglas, Haralson, and Polk counties. Between 1850 and 1874, parts of Carroll, Cobb, Douglas, and Polk counties were annexed to Paulding County.
    County Seat: The legislation creating Paulding County provided that on the first Monday in March 1833, election of county officials take place at the residence of John Witcher. Following that election, the new justices of county's inferior court were empowered to select a site for the county seat and provide for erection of a courthouse and other public buildings. The act further provided that until a courthouse was built, Paulding County superior and inferior courts were to hold sessions at John Witcher's house.
    In 1833, the inferior court selected a site for the county seat -- but many citizens complained about the location. On Dec. 23, 1833, the legislature authorized the inferior court to call a referendum in Jan. 1834 to allow voters of Paulding County to indicate their choice for county seat (Ga. Laws 1833, p. 54). The referendum, however, was never held.
    Presumably, the site designated as county seat in 1833 grew into a town that became known as Van Wert (named for Isaac Van Wert, who had assisted John Paulding in the capture of Major André in 1780.) On Dec. 27, 1838, the legislature designated Van Wert as permanent county seat and incorporated it as a town (Ga. Laws 1838, p. 75).
    On Dec. 20, 1851, the legislature created Polk County from portions of Paulding and Floyd counties (Ga. Laws 1851-52, p. 52). Because Van Wert was located in the section of Paulding transferred to Polk, the legislation authorized the Paulding County inferior court to select a new county seat and provide for erection of a courthouse. On May 14, 1852, the inferior court accepted land deeded by Garrett Spinks for a new county seat and designated the site as Dallas. Incorporated by an act of Feb. 8, 1854 (Ga. Laws 1853-54, p. 232), Paulding County's seat was named for George Dallas (1792-1864), who was Vice President of the United States during the administration of James Polk (1845-49).

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