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Lawrence County Court House - New Castle PA


After the formation of Lawrence County in March 1849 a dedicated court house was a major priority. The first court sessions were held in an old Methodist Church on South Jefferson Street beginning on January 7, 1850, with the Honorable John Bredin serving as President Judge of the courts. In October 1850 construction of a new court house commenced on a hill overlooking Pittsburg Street (Later East Washington Street), a site formerly occupied by a barn owned by David Crawford Jr. The court house opened in late June 1852. (c1900) Full Size


The land for the original court house was donated by David Crawford Jr., who passed away in August 1874. His father had come to New Castle as early as 1827 and purchased land along the Neshannock Creek. (c1905)


Residences line the north side of Court Street (on left), which would later to cleared away to make room for various annex buildings. (c1915)


(c1905)


(c1906)


Throughout the 1920’s and into the 1930’s a debate centered on whether to build a new court house or simply build an large annex building. Preliminary plans were formulated for a new nine-story building but this venture fell through by 1935. The Thayer architectural firm even sued the county for design work it completed but felt was not properly compensated for. I believe the annex building at right, a cheaper option, was opened in late 1939. By 1960 the court house complex consisted of about a dozen buildings. (c1940)


The War Memorial shrine, honoring local military veterans killed in service during World War I and World War II, was dedicated along East Washington Street on Sunday, July 4, 1948. (c1950)


(c1970)


(Mar 2012) Full Size


(Apr 2012) Full Size

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