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Brunswick City Hall

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1886–1889, Alfred S. Eichberg; 1893–1897 clock tower, Alfred S. Eichberg; 1999–2003 restoration, John A. Tuten and Douglas A. Neal. 1229 Newcastle St.

The recently restored Brunswick City Hall was designed by Alfred S. Eichberg of Savannah. It is contemporary with his Brunswick railroad building, part of the Central of Georgia Railroad Shops and Terminal Complex, now used by the Savannah College of Art and Design as Eichberg Hall (1887–1888). City Hall’s clock tower was added in 1897. One of the state’s notable High Victorian public buildings, it features a style that has been described as a mix of Richardsonian Romanesque and Queen Anne. The latter, with its brick, terra-cotta, and stone trim, was popular for Georgia courthouses during the late nineteenth century. Features of both of these styles are in evidence here in many well-crafted details: terra-cotta friezes on the clock tower, inset angular brick, broken scroll-neck pediment, patterned surfaces, and foliate stone capitals located under the corner turrets, which feature grotesque faces grimacing at onlookers like members of a medieval bestiary on a Romanesque church.

The building sits solidly on a rusticated white stone foundation, and it sparkles above with stone accents highlighting the predominantly red brick upper floors. Roof dormers flanked by chimneys (which are, in turn, variegated with stone accents), polygonal bays, and the climatic clock tower lend a picturesque romanticism to this Victorian extravaganza. Inside, a double staircase is punctuated by two iron newel posts supporting lights; overhead is a paneled wood ceiling of heart of pine; and the entry floor and wainscoting are pink and gray marble. Original (refitted) gaslight fixtures, chandeliers, and brass fittings are preserved. The second floor contained a large court room, now used for receptions. Restorations in 2004 were overseen by architects John A. Tuten and Douglas A. Neal, who adapted the building for use as a special events venue. In 2006 Old Brunswick City Hall received the Marguerite Williams Preservation Award of the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation.

References

Barefoot, Patricia. Brunswick: The City by the Sea (Images of America). Charleston, S.C.: Arcadia Publishing Co., 2000.

 

Writing Credits

Author: 
Robert M. Craig
Coordinator: 
Robert M. Craig
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Data

Timeline

  • 1886

    Built
  • 1893

    Clock tower built
  • 1951

    Top three stories removed
  • 1979

    Listed on the National Register of Historic Places
  • 1999

    Restoration

What's Nearby

Citation

Robert M. Craig, "Brunswick City Hall", [Brunswick, Georgia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/GA-01-127-0040.

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