Seneca County, Ohio- Tiffin (2017-)

I took an online rhetoric class at a community college last year that involved writing a persuasive paper. I focused on the value that historic courthouses provide their communities and how they tend to serve as commercial anchors to their downtowns. Any courthouse does that, but old ones demonstrated that courthouses with history contributed far […]

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Johnson County- Franklin (1881-)

Hoosier fourth-graders study Indiana history. While most of it’s concentrated around the state’s founding, my recollections from 2002 culminated in my textbook’s quick mention of some of the notable people our state has produced. Cole Porter was one, born in Peru. The artist Robert Indiana was another; a New Castle resident born Robert Clark in […]

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Henry County- New Castle (1869-)

A version of this post originally appeared here on March 12, 2018. Quick- jot this down! “It must be free from dampness, which would destroy the precious records of the county, on which so much of the ‘peace and quiet’ of our community depends. It must, of course, be fire proof and sufficiently commodious for […]

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Starke County- Knox (1897-)

The Starke County Courthouse in rural Knox has a tantalizing pedigree. Its architects, John F. Wing and Marshall Mahurin of Fort Wayne were responsible for a ton of landmarks around Indiana, including the Hancock and Monroe county courthouses along with the replacement tower of the Adams County courthouse. They also did city halls in Fort […]

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Lake County- Hammond (1972-)

Most counties in Indiana are quite content with one courthouse. Not Lake County! The county closest to Chicago -Indiana’s second largest by size and population density- has a whopping four. Most county courts and offices are held within a sprawling complex northeast of Crown Point that replaced that town’s historic 1878 courthouse, which we’ve talked […]

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Jefferson County- Madison (1855)

“Like a gentleman dressed for a dinner party, the county courthouse stands above the din of life at its feet. A county seat is not only a land of deeds and wills and court cases. It is also a land of pizza, beer and gasoline1” said John Dilts, lawyer and author of The Magnificent 92 Indiana […]

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Ripley County- Versailles (1863-)

Hoosiers like to celebrate our accomplishments. When we complete civic projects, the festivities often include things like a ribbon-cutting, speeches from dignitaries or stakeholders, balloons, music, and even fireworks. Pretty low on the list of typical events are 2,000-person confederate raids that pillage our hometown. But that’s what the nearly-finished Ripley County Courthouse in Versailles […]

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