- Monticello, UT
- Site Type:
- Civic Facilities, Courthouses (State & Local)
- New Deal Agencies:
- Works Progress Administration (WPA), Work Relief Programs
- Rutherford and Ashton
- Quality of Information:
- Very Good
- Site Survival:
Bonding ($36,000) for a new San Juan courthouse was put a successful vote in February 1920 after citizens realized that their neighboring county (Grand) was building a large new courthouse. Construction in Monticello began soon thereafter, and the courthouse was nearly ready for occupancy in late 1920 lacking only steam heat, plumbing (including toilet facilities, jail lavoratories, and hot water), and finished cement.
And then it sat, partially completed for nearly 17 years: only four rooms were useable, and those without heat or modern plumbing.
In 1937, the Works Progress Administration (WPA) approved $8000 to complete the courthouse. The county’s portion was $2000. They first balked at the difficulty in paying for material, but later obtained the funds by ‘borrowing’ from the County Road fund and paying back the fund through collection of delinquent taxes.
The Salt Lake Tribune covered the long journey with one paragraph in Feb 1938: “Completion of the $50,000 San Juan county courthouse marks the end of 18 years’ struggle on the part of county offficials and public-spirited citizens.” No mention of the WPA!
The courthouse has been expanded (1955) and is still serving as the county courthouse today (2023).
Complete courthouse. (1938, Feb 22). Salt Lake Tribune.
County commissioners meet will finish court house pay unpaid bills. (1937, Jan 7). San Juan Record.
Deacon, J. (n.d.). San Juan County. American Courthouses: A photo archive. [accessed Mar 21 2023 http://www.courthouses.co/us-states/o-u/utah/san-juan-county/]
Finishing of courthouse was started last Monday. (1937, Feb 25). San Juan Record.
McPherson, R.S. (1995). The History of San Juan County. Utah State Historical Society and San Juan County Commission.
San Juan courthouse soon to be an assured thing. (1920, Feb 26). Times Independent.
Special Collections, Ashton & Evans collection [unprocessed blueprints]. J. Willard Marriott Library, The University of Utah.
To start completion of San Juan court house. (1937, Feb 18). San Juan Record.
Site originally submitted by Corrinne Fiedler on March 22, 2023.
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