Courthouse, 1858/59

The Orange County Courthouse marks a radical departure from the traditional classical-style Virginia courthouse, illustrating public acceptance of exotic taste in late antebellum times. Designed by Charles Haskins of the Washington firm of Haskins and Alexander, and completed in 1859, the building has all of the major characteristics of the Italian Villa style: deep-bracketed cornices, shallow-hipped roofs, and a square tower.


The work is Orange County’s fourth court structure built specifically as such. The original courthouse was built near the Rapidan River, when the county was at its largest from 1734 to 1739. It was rebuilt in the Village of Orange in 1749, and rebuilt again in 1804 on public land just a few blocks from the current site. In 1858, railroad construction required one final relocation to its current site.


The arcaded openings on the first floor were filled in around 1948. The site includes the former clerk’s office, jail, and a memorial monument to Orange County men, listed by unit, who fought for the Confederacy in the American Civil War. .


The next stop is the bank next door.