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Greene County Courthouse (Iowa)

The Greene County Courthouse, located in Jefferson, Iowa, United States, was built in 1918. It was individually listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978 as a part of the County Courthouses in Iowa Thematic Resource.[1] In 2011 it was included as a contributing property in the Jefferson Square Commercial Historic District.[2] The courthouse is the third structure to house court functions and county administration.

Greene County Courthouse
GreeneCountyCourthouse.jpg
Greene County Courthouse (Iowa) is located in Iowa
Greene County Courthouse (Iowa)
Greene County Courthouse (Iowa) is located in the US
Greene County Courthouse (Iowa)
Location E. Lincoln Way and Chestnut St., Jefferson, Iowa
Coordinates 42°0′57″N 94°22′26″W / 42.01583°N 94.37389°W / 42.01583; -94.37389Coordinates: 42°0′57″N 94°22′26″W / 42.01583°N 94.37389°W / 42.01583; -94.37389
Built 1918
Architect Proudfoot, Bird & Rawson
Architectural style Beaux Arts
Part of Jefferson Square Commercial Historic District (#11000503)
MPS County Courthouses in Iowa TR
NRHP reference # 78001222[1]
Added to NRHP December 14, 1978

Contents

HistoryEdit

 
Lindsey Memorial

The first courthouse in Greene County was a frame building built in 1856 for $1,825. Prior to that time the county officers were housed in the Thomas Phillips Building. The second courthouse was completed in 1870 for $37,000. The building featured a bell in the cupola that served as a fire alarm, called the court into session and announced curfew.[3] The present courthouse was dedicated in 1917 and was built at a cost of $200,000.[4] A monument to President Abraham Lincoln was added in 1918 to commemorate the Lincoln Highway, which passes in front of the courthouse.

The Mahanay Tower was added to the southwest corner of courthouse grounds in 1966.

In 1993, the Lindsey Memorial, commemorating Greene County native Darrell R. Lindsey, posthumous World War II Medal of Honor recipient, was relocated from the Lindsey Air Station in Wiesbaden, Germany to the southeast corner of the courthouse grounds.[5]

ArchitectureEdit

Proudfoot, Bird & Rawson of Des Moines designed the three-story building in the Beaux Arts style which is constructed of Bedford Stone.[1] The floor of the central rotunda features a 14 feet (4.3 m) mosaic tile reproduction of the county seal. William Peaco painted the four murals that adorn the inner dome. They are entitled: The Buffalo Hunt, The Emigrants, The Pioneer and The Modern Farm.

Mahanay TowerEdit

The bell tower was built at a cost of $350,000 funded by the estate of Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Mahanay and dedicated on October 16, 1966. The 165-foot (50 m) tower is in the Brutalist style with a three concave sides and contains 14 bells cast by the Petit & Fritsen Bell Foundry in Aarle-Rixtel the Netherlands. The bells chime on the quarter-hour and can be operated by an electric keyboard. The tower has a 120-foot (37 m) observation deck accessed via a glass elevator.[5]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c National Park Service (2009-03-13). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ James E. Jacobsen. "Jefferson Square Commercial Historic District" (PDF). National Park Service. Retrieved 2016-08-16. 
  3. ^ "Greene County Courthouse". Iowa Judicial Branch. Retrieved 2011-03-03. 
  4. ^ Stanek, Edward and Jacqueline (1976). Iowa's Magnificent County Courthouses. Des Moines: Wallace-Homestead. p. 80. ISBN 0-87069-189-9. 
  5. ^ a b "Our History". Greene County, Iowa. Retrieved 2015-07-30.