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Richland County Courthouse

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1912, Buechner and Orth. 4th St. at 2nd Ave. N
  • (Photograph by Steve C. Martens)

Typical of Buechner and Orth’s courthouses in North Dakota, this subdued version of Beaux-Arts classicism is set on a full city block, surrounded by extensive lawns, trees, and other plants. The architects made the dome and the central projection of the facade the visual foci of their courthouses. Here the projecting central pavilion has paired stone columns with Corinthian capitals supporting a limestone entablature and pediment. The courthouse is constructed of Bedford, Indiana, limestone over a basement of rusticated Kettle River sandstone. The metal-covered dome, with bull’s-eye windows, rises from an octagonal drum pierced by rectangular windows separated by pairs of columns. A diminutive circular cupola and ball finial crown the dome. The interior features murals, white marble stairs, terrazzo floors, and a lavishly ornamented two-story rotunda with pilasters and moldings enriched with rosettes and egg-and-dart and other patterns. Second-story hallways open into the rotunda through ornate keystone-arched apertures. The courtroom has a richly decorated coffered ceiling and a band of stencil work below the ceiling.

Writing Credits

Steve C. Martens and Ronald H. L. M. Ramsay


What's Nearby


Steve C. Martens and Ronald H. L. M. Ramsay, "Richland County Courthouse", [Wahpeton, North Dakota], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of North Dakota

Buildings of North Dakota, Steve C. Martens and Ronald H. L. M. Ramsay. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2015, 54-55.

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