Although a cot was added in March 1937, the sheriff was ordered to discontinue use of the space in November of the same year because it was a hazard to a person’s health. Instead, the Commissioners assigned a room in the new courthouse for use as a library, a meeting room for ladies’ clubs and a waiting room for witnesses during sessions of the court. Over the following three years, the library remained dedicated to re-establishing an adequate library for the school. The similarly styled stone jail was at the southern end of the square, near the site of the current courthouse. Mr. Luckenbach used the building to start his hardware store, and substantial additions were made in the 1930s. After peaking at 4,521 in 1940, the county’s population returned to 2,964 by 1960 and has remained relatively constant at about 2,300 since 1980. The library has been an important and active institution in Menard. Its county seat is Petersburg, which is also the location of the county's only stop light. Visit our Links Page for websites providing Employment Listings, as well as US Government holiday closings. According to The Menard Messenger, a petition signed by all the directors of the Chamber of Commerce was presented to the Commissioners Court requesting that the old jail be saved for “some general purpose.” (August 13, 1931) The Lions Club also supported the retention of the jail for use as a meeting space, library or other public purpose. Locate Menard real estate and other county court records held by the County Clerk including birth certificates, death certificates, marriage licenses, and divorce records. The form is nearly symmetrical, with the front distinguished by its protruding one-story entrance section and slightly more shallow three-story mass. The simple, rectangular building, designed by McDermott and Associates, was sheathed in multiple shades of brick in an attempt to match the courthouse. Architect: Elmer George Withers Thus on May 11, 1931, a tax of 25 cents on every $100 of property was established to pay for those items and to help cover the courthouse warrants. Website: http://www.state.il.us/court/CircuitCourt/CircuitMap/8th.asp#Menard, Staff: Diane M. Lagoski, Chief Judge; Sharon Main - Trial Court Administrator From 1880 to 1884, the limestone structure’s first floor housed a general store while the second functioned as the county’s courtroom. “The first men to the shovels when the word go was announced got the jobs.” (The Menard Messenger March 26,1931; Menard News Nov. 11, 1971). In addition to its function as the center of county government, the Menard County Courthouse has also housed several other community uses. Present Status: Gone (Plan-19) Stairs at each end of the central section lead up to the second floor. Building Materials/Description: Stone, 2-story, Building Completion Date: 1932 An apparently pressing need was addressed almost immediately. No windows were included on the sides of the three-story sections, and the four-story mass has smaller casement windows without the lower horizontal openings. Building Materials/Description: Vernacular, wood picket, Building Completion Date: 1886 Withers clearly understood the significance of form and massing to Art Deco architecture, which was then proliferating in Dallas and Fort Worth. Menard County Senior Transportation operates its programs and services without regard to race, color, or national origin in accordance with Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Despite the excitement surrounding the courthouse’s construction and, as importantly, the provision of work for local men during the Great Depression, many citizens were also interested in keeping the 1885 courthouse and jail for community use. Additional: Circuit Court Clerk: Penny Hoke. The 1931 Menard County Courthouse has served as the center of county government for over seventy years. The original bid was for $6,713.51, but it had been revised down to $3,908.51 in February. On the same day, A.P. As shown on the 1930 Sanborn map, Mission Street was also closed between Tipton and Gay Streets, along the southern boundary of the square. The most influential aspect of this new vocabulary, especially in the United States, was the tendency to replace historicist decorative features with a rigidly geometric, stylized form of ornamentation. The building’s design exemplifies the widespread influence of Art Deco architecture on Texas county courthouses, but also the tendency to retain some entrenched traditional features. The Menard County Jail occupied the top floor of the courthouse from 1932 until 1980, when the new jail was built. Five bids were returned, and E.D. The form of the Menard County Courthouse is composed from several distinct masses of differing heights. Despite the introduction of limited oil and gas production in the 1940s, ranching has consistently dominated the Menard County economy. The pecans that fall from the square’s many trees are considered public property and people often gather to collect them. Keen, a Methodist minister, was allowed use of one of the vacant rooms on the second floor on June 4, 1932, provided that he not cause any trouble when asked to leave the building. The historical celebration, “Jim Bowie Days,” has also been held on the courthouse square for the past 10 years. Fax: 217-632-4124 While building’s designed in this style achieved a novel and modern “look,” what was inside the “envelope” remained relatively unchanged. The Menard Messenger also reported on March 12 that, “several thousand dollars worth of marble was eliminated; a high-powered heating system was left out, a water cooling system was omitted; the cost of a tower clock was stricken off; and the jail fixtures originally included were disposed of. In 1930 in a close election, county residents approved a new jail and courthouse. Its continued use as a courthouse has clearly maintained its integrity of association. The community was then invited to the February 20, 1931 Commissioner’s Court meeting to discuss the courthouse cost. Except for the addition of a few ceiling fans, the district courtroom is virtually unchanged since its original construction. How was I chosen? The request stated that, “the cost of construction and equipment of the proposed new Court House and Jail will be paid for as follows, to wit: Seventy Thousand Dollars ($70,000.00) in cash, and the balance necessary to be added to this sum to equal the contract price to be paid by the issuance and delivery to the contractor by the Commissioner’s Court legally issued interest-bearing warrants, etc.” As concern for the cost grew, a petition was presented to the Court, signed by 290 citizens, requesting that the Court not issue deficiency warrants without prior approval from the voters. The courtroom has been meticulously restored, from the wooden furniture and wainscoting, to the chandeliers to the gold trim painted on the sides of the folding seats in the gallery. Several changes had been made to the original plans to keep the total cost below $100,000. The Pioneer Rest Cemetery in Menard plan. ) the courthouse cost the era ’ s central core and wall... 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