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This courthouse is the fourth iteration of the courthouse where Henry Clay argued some of his first law cases. Kentucky architect John McMurtry built this version of the building in 1853. The courtroom was on the second floor even though it was supposed to be on the first floor. The courthouse was used as a local opera and entertainment house, as well.


  • Clark County Courthouse

The first Clark County Courthouse was built in 1794. It was a two-room log structure that only cost sixteen dollars. The first court session held there was on July 22, 1794. The second courthouse was built in October 1797, and the third was made in 1821. The final structure was built in 1855 and was built in a Greek Revival style to create the new building.

Outside of working as a court of law, it served as a social center for Clark County. The building facilitated plays, musical programs, and operas. Since it was one of the most significant buildings in the county that can fit larger groups of people to see entertainment. It was also the courthouse Henry Clay, pro-Union senator, and leader of the Whig party started his career in law. 

Walden, John D. National Register of Historic Place Registration Form. National Register of Historic Place Registration. . Accessed May 01, 2018. https://npgallery.nps.gov/NRHP/GetAsset/fd42dd48-7a86-4dc3-a83e-a0f501a1acfc?branding=NRHP.

The Kentucky Encyclopedia. Lexington, Kentucky. University Press of Kentucky, 2015.