Former Lincoln County Courthouse

This two-storey, Ontario Georgian style building was constructed in two phases; erected from 1848 to 1849 and designed after the town hall in Perugia, Italy, the first phase accommodated the offices of town council, a town market and a fire/police station.

It was conceived as something of a stage set: only facades visible on James and King Streets are of channelled Queenston ashlars, while the west and north walls are constructed with a course rubble limestone and brick, respectively. The front facade is surmounted by a tower with a three-faced striking clock and is topped by an octagonal cupola.

The clock is believed to be imported from Europe and continues to chime with the assistance of the original weights which extend from the clock tower to the first floor. The entrance to the building, like that in Perugia, is carved in stone and features upright balustrades which conform to the slope of the stairway. The supporting columns under the copings on each side are individually carved to fit its specific location.

The interior still has handsomely-detailed, glazed panelled-wood doors and various plaster cornices are still intact. The upper floor, originally the Council Chamber and meeting hall, contains 22-foot high ceilings. The first floor, formerly an indoor market, contains 13-foot high ceilings. A semi-deteriorated carved bull's head and a sheaf of wheat on the James Street entrance are all that remain to indicate the use of the east wing basement as a market. The second phase, a northeast wing cut-stone addition to the original structure, was constructed in 1865 to accommodate the relocated County offices and courthouse.

Former Lincoln County Courthouse

Copyright © 2014 The Corporation of the City of St. Catharines