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Carbon County Courthouse

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1893, Lewis S. Jacoby; 1935 addition. 4 Broadway
  • (Photograph by Matthew Aungst)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Matthew Aungst)

By the 1890s, the classically styled courthouse that replaced the building destroyed in the 1849 fire was deemed inadequate—and perhaps was still tainted by its role in the Molly Maguires trials of the previous generation. This led to a commission for Lewis Jacoby. After study at the Cooper Union in New York City, he entered an office in nearby Allentown in 1868, and seven years later was practicing independently. Despite the overlay of Richardsonian Romanesque detail and the rugged quarry-faced stonework of the facade, the roots of his career in Victorian Gothic are evident in the slender corner tower capped by a red tile roof. The tiled floors and cast-iron stair newels of the main stair are again more Victorian in character, but the main courtroom with its light-toned woods is in the spirit of H. H. Richardson's churches. The decorative woodwork is extraordinary.

Writing Credits

George E. Thomas

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