STAUNTON — The history of the Augusta County Courthouse will soon be on display following the building’s approval to join the Virginia Historical Highway Marker program.
The Virginia Board of Historic Resources approved the county’s application for the courthouse to join this program on March 18. The metal highway marker for the courthouse will be installed later this year.
Virginia’s Historical Highway Marker program is the oldest of any such program in the United States, and the county courthouse will join more than 2,500 markers in displaying the history of locations in local communities.
“We are very excited to announce that the Augusta County Courthouse has been recognized by the Virginia Board of Historic Resources as deserving to be granted a Virginia Historical Highway Marker,” said Steve Landes, Augusta County’s clerk of the circuit court. “The current courthouse, built in 1901, is the fifth building to sit on this historic site in downtown Staunton. The county’s first courthouse was a log structure built in 1745.”
The circuit court clerk’s office and the Augusta County Historical Society partnered together to raise the roughly $2,000 needed to install the metal marker.
The Augusta County Courthouse was completed in 1901 and is listed in both Virginia’s Landmarks Register and the National Register of Historic Places. Landes noted that residents can donate by mail to support with funding of the marker.
The marker will read as follows:
“Augusta County, created by the Virginia General Assembly in 1738, was formally organized in 1745. Its original western boundary stretched “to the utmost limits of Virginia,” a claim that then extended to the Pacific Ocean. The county court first met in a log courthouse that William Beverley built on his property here. John Madison served as the county’s first clerk of court from 1745 to 1778. Prominent regional architect T.J. Collins designed the current courthouse, the fifth on this site, in the Beaux-Arts and Neo-Classical Revival styles. The building, completed in 1901, was listed on the Virginia Landmarks Register, and the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.”
The courthouse was one of 16 markers that were approved across the state.