After the courthouse burned in 1871, another structure was built to replace it. Unfortunately, many of the citizens didn't like the new building. James Spence, a local businessman who chaired the county commission and also the grand jury, lead the movement to tear down the new building, attacking its "shoddy construction."
The new building was designed by E. G. Lin, a Baltimore architect who had moved to Atlanta in the 1880s. He had also designed Central Presbyterian Church in Atlanta. For the new courthouse he chose a Romanesque-influenced style. The small balcony on the corner of the front of the courthouse was originally used to summon jurors from the square. The new building cost a little over $23,000. Bathrooms were added in 1903, and in 1935 the north wing was expanded.This building was used as a courthouse until the new Gwinnett Justice Center was completed in 1988. It now houses the Gwinnett Historical Society.
Back to Gwinnett County History