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February 8, 2013 / Joanne Yeck

Buckingham Courthouse: Following the Fire

Buckingham County: CourthousePhoto by Joanne Yeck

The Buckingham Courthouse survived the Civil War only to be burned by an arsonist in early 1869.  Court continued at the nearby Brick Tavern House, “occupied” by John M. Hooper, and, quickly, conversations were held about constructing a new courthouse.  Responsible men of Buckingham, lawyers and planters, gathered in Maysville, the county seat, on March 11, 1869.

Thanks to Patrick Murray who submitted the following court document which was reprinted in Carl Rosen’s book, The Papers of Col. Richard H. Gilliam of Buckingham County, Virginia:

Wheras the courthouse and clerks office of this county were consumed by fire on the night of the 24th of February last and now it being the duty of this court to provide a courthouse and clerks office for the county – with a view to use speedy performance of this duty the court doeth appoint N.F. Bocock and William Hocker in district No 1, William R. Wright and Chapman Glover in district No 2, Geo. D. Saunders and Rich H. Gilliam in district No 3, Edmund W. Hubard and William E. Gannaway in district No 4, James B. Ficklin and D.J. Woodfin in district No 5, and Henry St. Geo Harris and Jno C. Turner in district No 6, commissioners whose duty it shall be to obtain prepare and report to the court as soon as practicalbe such plans for a courthouse and clerks office as they may deem suitable of the court, and the court doth further empower said comrs or any two of them to take such steps as may seem necessary to them to preserve and secure from work and material of the old courthouse building and enclosure now remaining.  And the court doth further direct that a copy of this order be forthwith served by the Sheriff of this county on each one of the commissioners approved.

A copy teste

R.K. Irving (Buckingham County Clerk)


Leave a Comment
  1. Linda / Feb 8 2013 8:16 pm

    Was either a person or group ever suspected of the arson of the Courthouse? Or, was there a suspected reason for the arson? I would think there should have been some rumors at least.

    • Joanne Yeck / Feb 8 2013 8:23 pm

      Good question. There were some rumors. I’ll make that tomorrow’s post!


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