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As It Was: Old Courthouse Building Becomes Jacksonville, Ore., City Hall

The Jackson County Courthouse, newly renovated in 2016 with modern heating and air conditioning, has transitioned into the Jacksonville, Ore., City Hall.

The building dates from 1883, when Jacksonville was the county seat.  In 1927, the county seat was moved to Medford, and the old courthouse building housed everyone from the Boy Scouts to the local Grange.  For 50 years, it held a museum run by the Southern Oregon Historical Society.

The county turned the old courthouse building over to the city in 2012.  With the support of Mayor Paul Becker, the council decided to renovate.  Jacksonville resident Larry Smith echoed the feelings of many residents when he said, “…they have saved it for another 100 years. I’m really glad to see it.”

The renovated building houses the city offices, but the original walls and high ceilings remain, as do two large photos of Peter Britt’s garden left over from the historical society museum.

The next phase of its transition from courthouse to city hall will be installation of an elevator and restoration of the large upstairs courtroom.

Sources: Bloom, Tony. "Jacksonville City Hall takes up residence in historic courthouse." Mail Tribune, Medford Mail Tribune, 20 July 2016, www.mailtribune.com/news/20160720/jacksonville-city-hall-takes-up-residence-in-historic-courthouse.

Sharon Bywater of Ashland, Oregon grew up in Southern California. She taught English literature and writing at Syracuse University in New York, where she also wrote and edited adult literacy books and published freelance articles in local media. Later, she lived in Washington, D.C., where she worked as an international telecommunications policy advisor at the U.S. Department of Commerce. She has Master’s degrees in English and Communications Management.