Date Built: 1922
Architectural Style: Beaux Arts Classicism/Neoclassical Revival
Designer: William J.J. Chase
This courthouse, the only one in the county's history, was renovated in 1978-79.
County History: On July 8, 1920, the General Assembly proposed a constitutional amendment to create Seminole County (Ga. Laws 1920, p. 52). In that year's general election, Georgia voters ratified the proposed amendment on Nov. 2, 1920, which marks the official date of the county's creation (although a state historical marker on the courthouse grounds incorrectly cites the county's creation as the day the legislative act proposing the constitutional amendment was approved).
According to the 1920 constitutional amendment, Seminole County was to be "laid out from the Counties of Decatur and Early." However, specific language in the constitutional amendment actually provided that the southern borders of Miller and Early counties constituted Seminole County's northern border. Thus, Seminole County was created entirely from Decatur County. Georgia's 156th county was named for the Seminole Indians, who once lived in this area.
Why was Seminole County created by constitutional amendment instead of an act of the General Assembly? In 1904, Georgia voters had approved a constitutional amendment limiting the number of counties in the state to 145. The next year, the General Assembly created eight new counties, bringing the total number to 145 -- the constitutional limit. Nevertheless, there was continuing pressure to create more counties. Beginning in 1906, lawmakers got around the 145-county limitation by creating new counties through constitutional amendments that were not subject to the limitation. By 1924, Georgia had 161 counties -- 16 of which had been created by constitutional amendment. On Jan. 1, 1932, Milton and Campbell counties merged with Fulton, leaving 159 counties. In 1945, Georgia voters ratified a new constitution -- one which provided an absolute limit of 159 counties, with an additional provision that no new country could be created except through consolidation of existing counties.
I like this courthouse the best so far. It is located at the end of the historic downtown area and must really look good with the flag displayed on the pole in front.