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General District Court Building (Clarke County Courthouse)

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Clarke County Courthouse
1837–1839, David Meade; c. 1880, c. 1935, 1952 additions. 104 N. Church St.

Construction of the courthouse began the year after Clarke County was formed. Based on a design by Meade, younger brother of Episcopal bishop William Meade, this is one of the commonwealth's Roman Revival courthouses inspired by Thomas Jefferson's Richmond State Capitol. The two-story Flemish bond brick building has a monumental pedimented portico of four massive Tuscan columns, a lunette in the pediment, and an octagonal cupola. The interior was extensively remodeled in the early twentieth century when the judge's chair was moved from one wall to another, but it still has its original rear gallery with a Tuscan entablature. A one-story wing added c. 1880 was later expanded to two stories with an arcaded first floor. The building was rehabilitated in 2002. The courthouse square includes a one-story brick commonwealth attorney's office (1880s), a c. 1900 two-story brick sheriff's office and former jail, and the new courthouse (1977).

Writing Credits

Author: 
Anne Carter Lee

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