Pope County Courthouse, 130 East Minnesota Avenue, Glenwood, MInnesota

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Pope County Courthouse

Address: 130 MInnesota Avenue E
Glenwood, Minnesota
Pope County, Minnesota
State/province: Minnesota
Country: United States
Year built: 1930
Primary Style: Beaux Arts
Historic Function: Courthouse
Current Function: Courthouse
Architect or source of design: Nairne W. Fisher
Material of Exterior Wall Covering: Brick
Material of Foundation: Stone

Glenwood Pope County

National Register of Historic Places Information
Reference Number: 82002997
Certification date: April 1, 1982
Level of significance: Local
Primary Style: Beaux Arts

When Pope County was organized in 1866, a log cabin built in the then-county seat, Stockholm, was used as a courthouse. The cabin is currently on display as part of a historic museum in Glenwood. In 1867, the county seat was moved to Glenwood where a small, two-story wooden building on Green Street served as the courthouse until 1879. In that year, an $8,000, two-story brick building was built in a cruciform configuration with two shallow-pitched gables intersecting where a very small lantern or cupola stood. A round window punctuated each of the four pediments and a chimney rose at each peak. A darker string course emphasized the tops of the narrow individual hooded windows. By 1928, the county board considered the building inadequate and "very unsightly inside, looking more like an abandoned structure than a public building." The building was razed and the present courthouse built on the site. A four-day event dedicated the Pope County Courthouse in June 1930. It began with a Glenwood band concert in the city park. The festivities concluded after three full days of speeches and music, Sunday morning services at the Lutheran church, and an afternoon historical pageant at the fair grounds. The building, shown above, is a Classic Revival style with a central pavilion that boasts engaged piers, decorated panels, and a heavy entablature upon the central frieze of which are carved the words, "Built to Perpetuate Civic Order and Justice." The 62 by 146 foot building cost $153,000 to build. An additional $20,500 was spent on furnishing and fixtures. Nairne Fisher of St. Cloud designed it and Mads Madsen was the general contractor. The light sand-colored brick came from Ohio and the limestone trim is from Bedford, IN. Two carloads of marble were shipped from Vermont to make the hallway wainscoting. Metal grillwork in the stairway and the protective ornament on the front doors were custom-designed for Pope County. Walnut with black ebony inlay was used for courtroom furniture. The commissioners' boardroom and various lobby benches were furnished and decorated with quarter-sawed oak, enhanced with ebony. - Historical information adapted from "The First 100 Years... The Minnesota State Bar Association."

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The Minnesota Historical Society holds many of the historical records, such as naturalization and civil and criminal case files, of Minnesota courthouses. State laws restrict some access to records. The Minnesota State BAR association published The First 100 Years— , which holds a more complete history of the judicial history on both the local and state levels.

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