It was designed by P.H. The design of the 1931 Menard County Courthouse reflects a number of the era’s trends in the architecture of public buildings. In addition to hosting these events, the courthouse square provides more informal opportunities for community interaction. While building’s designed in this style achieved a novel and modern “look,” what was inside the “envelope” remained relatively unchanged. (Cohen 1988: 24, Menard Messenger). “The first men to the shovels when the word go was announced got the jobs.” (The Menard Messenger March 26,1931; Menard News Nov. 11, 1971). Box 466 A gas station now occupies the site. The stones from the old courthouse and jail were used to build the fence around the Pioneer Rest Cemetery in Menard. The Menard County Courthouse is therefore nominated to the National Register under Criterion A in the area of Government and Criterion C in the area of Architecture, both at the local level of significance. Additional bookcases were constructed in the County Courtroom in June 1937 for the storage of free textbooks for Menard County schools. Architect: Elmer George Withers The building’s most common windows, which include an operable horizontal section below the vertically divided casements, were used on the two-story wings and the second floor of the central section. By the time the Spanish reached the valley, in the eighteenth century, they found enough Apache and Comanche residents to warrant the establishment of a mission, Santa Cruz de San Sabá, and a military fort, San Luis de las Amarillas Presidio, in 1757. (Plan-22) The integrity of the interior is perhaps the most remarkable feature of the building. (Plan-19) Stairs at each end of the central section lead up to the second floor. All the bids were rejected for being too high, and new bids were requested immediately for review the following day. How was I chosen? In Architecture in Texas, 1895-1945, Jay Henry refers to this unification of the traditional and modern as the “Modern Classic” style, a term that applies well to the Menard County Courthouse. Menard County, organized 1871, conducted its first county business in a house built of pickets before financing the construction of a more permanent, two-story limestone building designed by architect P. H. Mires. Future Menard County juvenile delinquency tallies will show whether or not this approach is working. (The Menard Messenger October 30, 1930) On December 15, 1930, the county selected the Fort Worth firm of Withers & Thompson to serve as the project’s architect. The east and west elevations of the courthouse are identical, although the view of the east elevation is obscured by the 1980 jail building. Original light fixtures remain on each pilaster, and the original door has also survived. The Menard County Courthouse’s dramatic stepped massing is a particularly striking feature of its design. An apparently pressing need was addressed almost immediately. This photo is in 7 groups Illinois Flickrjournal 115,732 items Architecture of Illinois 3,503 items Architecture of Days Gone By 235,176 items Building with Stone 19,848 items buildings are beautiful 124,358 items Sky & Cloud Junkies (Please follow the rules :) 217,079 items Any person who believes that she or he has been aggrieved by an unlawful discriminatory practice under … When the local high school burned down in the fall of 1948, the library became the county’s sole source of books. Demolished 1932 2nd Floor, Menard County Courthouse Phone: (217) 632-2615 Fax: (217) 632-4124 Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. County Seat: Menardville On April 13, 1931, the brick contract was awarded to Elgin-Butler Brick through the San Angelo Building Material Company. County Seat: Menard Menardville established itself early on as the county’s commercial center, with 300 residents by the early 1890s. The similarly styled stone jail was at the southern end of the square, near the site of the current courthouse. Its county seat is Petersburg, which is also the location of the county's only stop light. The canal served the dual purpose of irrigating land for growing grain and powering gristmills for processing the grain into feed. Construction soon began on a single, gravity-flow canal fed by the San Saba River, which eventually extended from five miles above Menardville to five miles below, passing through the center of town. The Commissioners Court ordered on May 13, 1884, that bonds be issued for the construction of a new courthouse and jail, and county residents responded by passing a $20,000 bond issue. Commissioners Bob Lott, Jeff Menard County Courthouse – Menard Elmer G. Withers of Fort Worth, known for his many Art Deco designs, was the architect for this 1931 courthouse that served as … Historic King County Courthose Historic Menard Courthouse Historic Nueces County courthouse Historic Reagan County Courthouse (ruins) Historic Starr County Courthouse Historic Stonewall County Courthouse Historic Taylor County Courthouse Twelve bids were received for the electrical, plumbing, and heating work. The building’s temple-like form and incorporation of Mayan motifs suggests that Withers was also familiar with pre-Colombian architecture. Its seat is Menard. Mr. He received no formal architectural training and is believed to have gained his architectural knowledge through apprenticeships and correspondence courses. Marker Text: Menard County organized in 1871 and officials built the first courthouse in 1880 and a second in 1886. On Thursday, October 16, 1930, the paper reported reasons why the citizens of Menard should vote for a new courthouse. The concrete walls of the raised, but unfinished, basement are exposed on the side and rear elevations, providing a visual base. Menard County, All civil cases at law over $300., Civil cases in equity., Proceedings in habeas corpus., Felonies and misdemeanors, Proceedings in quo warranto., Prohibition and certiorari cases., Appeals from magistrate court, municipal court, and administrative agenc, Phone Number: 217-632-2615 The Commissioners Court seems to have been continually issuing extra warrants to pay for items that were not included in the construction bid, such as furniture and plumbing. A square boiler chimney, slightly taller than the central mass, rises from the intersection of the east wing and the three-story section. The courtroom has been meticulously restored, from the wooden furniture and wainscoting, to the chandeliers to the gold trim painted on the sides of the folding seats in the gallery. In August 1943, a contract for $897 was accepted from Probst Roofing Co. to repair the roof over the jail and on the south side of the building (near the jailers quarters). Of those 75 locals, forty men were hired at 25 cents an hour, selected through a simple but effective process. No official acceptance of the building was listed in the Commissioners Court minutes and no ribbon cutting ceremony was found in the newspaper, but one would assume that the building was occupied by the end of 1931. The report found that the vault space was inadequate to hold all the county records, bats and mites were prevalent, wind penetrated the courthouse through the windows and cupola, and holes pierced the floor of the District Courtroom. COUNTY OF MENARD ) ) S.S. STATE OF ILLINOIS ) The Menard County Board of Commissioners met on Tuesday, January 28, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. at the Menard County Courthouse, 102 S. Seventh Street, Petersburg, Illinois. Call, or visit the court's website if listed above. It should come as little surprise then, that the two Texas county courthouses most comparable to that of Menard, Voelker and Dixon’s 1930 Cottle County Courthouse and Lang and Witchell’s 1928 Eastland County Courthouse, were designed by prominent firms from the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. Additional county offices are in the wings, with the district courtroom occupying the majority of the building’s central core. The Menard County Jail occupied the top floor of the courthouse from 1932 until 1980, when the new jail was built. The original bid was for $6,713.51, but it had been revised down to $3,908.51 in February. Seventy-five men and boys showed up at the ground breaking looking for work. The Menard County Courthouse in Menard County, Illinois. Building Materials/Description: Stone, 2-story, Building Completion Date: 1932 On September 17, 1931, The Messenger reported that the Commissioners had decided against saving the jail. A couple is currently converting the building into their personal home and art studio. The old jail cells will be used.” Porter also reassured the reporter that he would use local labor whenever possible. On the same day, A.P. He died on December 30, 1938. The presence of Apaches and Comanches continued to discourage settlement of the area into the mid 19th century, even after it was included in the 1842 Fisher-Miller Land Grant, in which the Republic of Texas gave more than three million acres to the San Saba Colonization Company to entice European immigrants to the valley. Unless changed by further public notice, the meetings will occur in the Menard County Courthouse, 102 South Seventh Street, Petersburg, Illinois 62675. The building’s very traditional H-shaped courthouse plan, with the central courtroom flanked by supporting offices, is obscured by the modern look of its rigidly geometric, stepped masses and its limited, stylized ornamentation. Two commissioners voted to put the footings at 22 feet, but the judge and other two commissioners went the other direction and agreed on a depth of 9 feet, which was where the foundation was set. Mrs. Will Nixon was ordered on January 11, 1932, to purchase furniture for the second floor Witness Room (then referred to as the Rest Room), not to exceed $500. Keen, a Methodist minister, was allowed use of one of the vacant rooms on the second floor on June 4, 1932, provided that he not cause any trouble when asked to leave the building. The roof was still covered under a 10-year warranty, so the county only paid for two yards of gravel. Elmer George Withers (1881-1938), listed as E. G. Withers in the Commissioners Court minutes, was born in 1881 in Caddo Peak, Texas. The jail was reportedly a dungeon, in the building’s northwest corner, into which prisoners were lowered and from which they could not escape without a ladder. The paper also noted that, because of the Great Depression, “[a] court house can be constructed at this special time for considerably less than at ordinary or normal times.” Arguments were made about the assurance of local labor being used during the construction and the wisdom of paying bonds over an extended period of time, whereby the county could keep up with the loan during the difficult economic times of the Great Depression and pay more in the future as the economy allowed. It was also mentioned that, without a new courthouse, the county would still have to spend at least $5,000 on a new vault. General Contractor: E. D. Porter Menard County first elected its own officials in 1871, and their first meetings were held in a picket house at the corner of San Saba Street and Ellis Street. A petition was circulated in 1930 calling for a bond election to build a new courthouse and jail. In 1966, a community swimming pool (non-contributing) and a concrete block support building (non-contributing) were built on the eastern half of the park. Fax: 217-632-4124 (Wiseman 1952; Commissioners Court Minutes). The only cast stone used on the rear elevation is in the cornice and pilaster “capitals” of the four-story mass. A separate builder, Walker Mowath & Co., was used for the jail. The construction firm Vickery and Haynes of Kimble County submitted the lowest bid, $12,500, and was awarded the courthouse contract on May 12, 1885. Withers, with his partner Jesse Thompson, the courthouse followed contemporary trends in courthouse design, uniting traditional features with the “modernistic” forms and ornamental vocabulary of Art Deco architecture. If any of these apply to you, contact the court to verify they observe the exemption. From 1880 to 1884, the limestone structure’s first floor housed a general store while the second functioned as the county’s courtroom. (Cohen 1988: 24), In addition to the Menard County Courthouse, Withers designed several other Texas county courthouses during his career, including: 1911 Jones County Courthouse, Anson; 1912 Armstrong County Courthouse, Claude; 1912 Marion County Courthouse, Jefferson; 1932 Young County Courthouse, Graham (with Thompson); 1938 Ector County Courthouse, Odessa; and 1938 Upshur County Courthouse, Gilmer. After peaking at 4,521 in 1940, the county’s population returned to 2,964 by 1960 and has remained relatively constant at about 2,300 since 1980. Commissioners Bob Lott, Jeff The 1931 Menard County Courthouse has served as the center of county government for over seventy years. The style is representative of the progressivism that defined the era, in which erecting a courthouse with a novel, “modernistic” design became a public assertion of the county’s commitment to growth and improvement. This building housed the Menard County courthouse and jail from 1880-84. Elmer J. Withers of the Fort Worth firm Withers and Thompson, designed the new courthouse with a … A public privy was also erected for $209 by Scruggs & Schuchard. For its longstanding service as the center of Menard County government, the courthouse is nominated under Criterion A in the area of Government at the local level of significance. The vast majority of original materials and finishes remain, including a large number of historic light fixtures. *county-courthouse.com is not affiliated with the Official US Government, or any state, local, or federal office. As Willard B. Robinson discusses in The People’s Architecture: Texas Courthouses, Jails, and Municipal Buildings, these attributes made the Modern Classic (or what Robinson refers to as “Stripped Classic”) style an especially popular choice for public architecture in the 1930s. Menard County Senior Transportation operates its programs and services without regard to race, color, or national origin in accordance with Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Although the building’s plan and organization are relatively traditional, its stepped massing and simple, stylized detailing identify it with the “modernistic” mode of design commonly referred to as Art Deco. The Modern Classic style was the perfect solution for a county who wanted to seem progressive and forward-thinking without completely abandoning the familiarity, solidity and monumentalism of classical idioms. The width of the bays varies across the elevation, in an A-B-A-B-A pattern. Its continued use as a courthouse has clearly maintained its integrity of association. COUNTY OF MENARD ) ) S.S. STATE OF ILLINOIS ) The Menard County Board of Commissioners met on Tuesday November 14, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. in the Menard County Courthouse, 102 S. Seventh Street, Petersburg, Illinois. (Texas Courthouse Alliance; Menard County Historical Society, 1982). Architectural Style: Art Deco Throughout its decades in the courthouse, the library added depth and continuity to the community’s use of the building. The 1931 Menard County Courthouse has served as the center of county government for over seventy years. Even today, the courthouse and square continue to serve as a social center for the community. *Not location specific. http://www.state.il.us/court/CircuitCourt/CircuitMap/8th.asp#Menard, The Public Access to Court Records (PACER). The original plans called for a full basement, but that was quickly eliminated due to the cost. The three central bays of the two-story wing are taller than the outer two, stepping up toward the central four-story mass. The first floor was occupied by a store, with the courthouse and jail on the second floor, accessed from an exterior stair. Taking advantage of the lower construction costs and plentiful labor supply generated by the Great Depression, the county constructed the building to replace their 1885 courthouse and jail. Mailing Address: P.O. Although the county most likely began using the new courthouse in 1931, furnishing the building would have to wait until the start of the new year. Withers clearly understood the significance of form and massing to Art Deco architecture, which was then proliferating in Dallas and Fort Worth. Menard County Court in Menard, Texas. The 1931 Mendard County Courthouse sits at the south end of a long, narrow square in Menard, a town along the San Saba River in Central Texas. The three-story mass that rises behind the entry section is the most ornamental face of the building. The original bond of $80,000 was clearly inadequate for the substantial building that was designed, and even the revised one that was built. Yet another contract for roof repair was let in January 1947, to William Braley, before a major re-roofing project was undertaken in 1949. In 1910, the town used a number of incentives to persuade the Fort Worth and Rio Grande Railroad Company to extend their tracks to the town, which the railroad asked to be renamed Menard. Commissioners Bob Lott, Jeff The central section is four stories, abutted by shallow three story masses on the north and south with two-story wings flanking the east and west sides. As shown on the 1930 Sanborn map, Mission Street was also closed between Tipton and Gay Streets, along the southern boundary of the square. The building’s dramatic stepped massing distinguishes it from most Texas courthouses of the period, however, and reveals Withers’s more sophisticated command of the style. texascouDfji209Dirthouses@yah2sd9Dioo.com. Please be advised that a meeting of the Menard County Board of Review has been scheduled for Monday, February 8, 2021. This is an image of a place or building that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places in the United States of America. The remaining windows are simple casements with two vertically divided panes. The form is nearly symmetrical, with the front distinguished by its protruding one-story entrance section and slightly more shallow three-story mass. The county has thus retained much of its rural character. Development of Menard County[1]. While most Art Deco-influenced courthouses in Texas, and especially those in more rural counties, derive their modern “look” primarily from ornamentation, Withers’s design focused on the building’s form, and its complex massing maintains a strong visual presence on every elevation. Simpson was paid $60 for his consultation. The Works Progress Administration (WPA) provided the labor in 1933-34 to lay the stones for the fence, but the arch was added later. (Menard News Nov. 11, 1971) On September 8, 1930, a bond election was approved to seek the citizens’ endorsement of $80,000 in bonds, payable over 40 years at 5 % interest. The library has been an important and active institution in Menard. Each of the section’s two end bays is also topped with a large cast stone ornament that features a heraldic shield bordered by garland. Additional: Circuit Court Clerk: Penny Hoke. The Menard Messenger also reported on March 12 that, “several thousand dollars worth of marble was eliminated; a high-powered heating system was left out, a water cooling system was omitted; the cost of a tower clock was stricken off; and the jail fixtures originally included were disposed of. $230,000. One final attempt was made by the citizens of Menard to save the 1885 jail. A bit of discussion for Review the following day contract for their bid of $ 8,844.02 County and... 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