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Courthouse Projects Awarded
First Round of Grants include “Lady Justice”

In 2010, three counties will receive restoration grants from Landmarks Illinois, as part of the first round of the Illinois County Courthouse Initiative. The $1 million multi-year program, which was announced in March 2009, is being funded by the Richard H. Driehaus Charitable Lead Trust.
The grants are designed to help fund the restoration of a county courthouse’s most critical features, such as clocks, bell towers, cupolas, and ornament. Another grant priority is to support cutting-edge–and energy efficient–exterior lighting programs. 
Grant applications this year were limited to courthouses listed in the National Register of Historic Places and located in an Illinois Main Street community.  The projects were reviewed by an advisory group composed of architects, courthouse experts, and Landmarks Illinois board members. The following three county courthouses were awarded grants for 2010. 
Edgar County, Paris – This grandiose Romanesque Revival-style building, which was designed by Henry Elliot in 1891-93, towers above this city of 9,000.  Atop its clocktower, standing 150 feet above the street, is a statue of “Lady Justice.” The metal-clad figure, however, stands with a distinct lean and is in danger of toppling.  The county will use its $70,000 matching grant to remove Lady Justice from the tower, completely restore her, and then reinstall her once the tower’s structural repairs are completed. 
Henry County, Cambridge – This Second Empire-style courthouse, designed by T.J. Tolan and Son and Brentwood S. Tolan in 1880, is the central focus of this community of 2,000.  Although the courthouse is the tallest structure in the vicinity, its clock does not work.  The county will use its $50,000 matching grant to restore the clock and clock tower to their original glory.
Morgan County, Jacksonville – This eclectic-style courthouse, which is located just off the county square, was designed by Chicago architect Gurdon P. Randall in 1869.  The county has undertaken an extensive restoration of the building that includes replacing the asphalt shingle roof with the original slate design, rehabilitating the original wood windows, and restoring the Joliet limestone exterior.  A $25,000 grant will help pay for an exterior lighting study that will recommend how to best highlight the building’s features at night.


Grants Awarded


2010 Grants

2011 Grants

2012 Grants

2013 Grants

USA Today, January 17, 2011







Landmarks Illinois
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