Independence County Courthouse
The Independence County Courthouse is a two-story, stone masonry institutional building with a raised basement and a Batesville marble exterior, laid out in a symmetrical, roughly “H”-shaped plan. The central, taller section of the building is five bays in length along the northern or Main Street elevation and accessed via a central, double-leaf entry. The lower, flanking sections are a single bay across. The eastern and western are each five bays in length. The building is fenestrated throughout with metal casement and awning windows, virtually all of which are original. It rests upon a concrete foundation and is covered with a flat roof.
The Independence County Courthouse was designed, with funds provided by the Works Progress Administration (WPA), by the Little Rock architectural firm of Wittenberg and Deloney in 1940 (cornerstone) to replace the High Victorian Gothic courthouse that had stood on the site since the 1880’s but which burned in 1939 (this had been the site of the county courthouse since 1857). It was designed in the Art Deco style and remains Batesville’s finest example of this style. Its symmetrical plan and elevations, coupled with the emphasis upon large areas of uninterrupted wall surface, and the spare and symmetrically-applied geometric, stylized Classical ornament render it a pure Art Deco design. The only landscape feature of note is the 1907 stone Confederate monument which was moved to this location in 1940 (arkansaspreservation.com).
Project originally submitted by Thomas Onions on April 22, 2015.
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