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Lincoln County Courthouse

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1902, Van Ryn and de Gelleke. 1110 E. Main St.

One of the most striking public buildings in northern Wisconsin, the Lincoln County Courthouse is visible for miles. Its six-story clock tower rises high above the building. Above a trio of pedimented windows is a belfry with an Ionic-columned arcade followed by clocks framed with ornate hoods on each of the tower’s faces and, at the apex, an octagonal lantern with an ornate knob and finial. Instead of using the white stone that typifies Beaux-Arts classicism, the Milwaukee architects chose native Wisconsin brownstone for the raised basement, light-brown brick for the first story, and salmon brick for the upper story and the tower. As a result, the composition has a warmth that Beaux-Arts designs often lack. Above the second floor, large pedimented dormers (alternately triangular and arched) punctuate a mansard roof, whose deck is bounded by an ornate crest. Inside, classical moldings adorn the interior of the faceted dome, which towers over the central three-story lightwell. Terrazzo floors display an elaborate floral motif, and beamed ceilings, original light fixtures, and murals lend beauty to the courtroom.

Writing Credits

Marsha Weisiger et al.


What's Nearby


Marsha Weisiger et al., "Lincoln County Courthouse", [Merrill, Wisconsin], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Wisconsin

Buildings of Wisconsin, Marsha Weisiger and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2017, 316-316.

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