The following text is taken from History of Harrison County, Iowa, written by the people of Harrison County Iowa and published in 1891 by the National Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois.
In 1854, the county commenced building a courthouse at Magnolia, from funds derived from the sale of town lots. This was a small frame structure, but met the requirements of the day in which it was fashioned; however as the years rolled on, the elements caused this pioneer landmark of public work to decay and in 1873, it was considered as unsafe by the Board of Supervisors, and they, that year, caused the erection of a frame office building, in which the records and county business matters were kept until Logan was made the seat of justice, in 1876.
The courthouse at Logan was erected in 1876. It was situated within a level block of land given by the city. The structure was of brick and is 55 x 70 feet and two stories high. The first floor was divided into six offices - Auditor, Treasurer, Clerk, Recorder, Sheriff and School Superintendent. All but the last named was provided with a good fire-proof vault. The second floor of the building was used for court room purposes and jury rooms. The building was erected by contractors Yeisley & Stowell during the Centennial year. It was built by an appropriation of $5,000 on the part of the tax payers of the county and $9,000 donated by the people of Logan.
The first Logan courthouse was replaced in 1910 by the current courthouse, a 68 by 96 ft., three-story steel and concrete block building faced with Bedford limestone at a cost of $103,205.15. It was dedicated November 3, 1911 and included offices for all the County Officers plus a District Courtroom and the County Supervisors meeting room. The cornerstone notes that the supervisors at the time of its construction were: J. Holeton, Chairman, T. Chatburn, and F. Zahner.
“Four mural painting adorning the stairway walls at the courthouse were part of an over–all interior redecorating program which the county supervisors authorized in 1920. The name of Frank Enders, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is lettered into the corner of one scene, so it is believed that he was the artist. Old timers recall that the paintings, all done on canvas, were accomplished on the wall rather than being painted and then put up. One painting is of the first courthouse at Magnolia, one is the first courthouse at Logan, one had a horn of plenty theme and one has “Lady Justice” with her scales, using a Grecian motif.” (Logan Centennial Book, p. 44)
Magnolia CourthouseFirst Courthouse in LoganHorn of PlentyLady Justice
© 2017 Harrison County, Iowa