Abraham Lincoln - York County Court House - York, PA
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member Math Teacher
N 39° 57.764 W 076° 43.598
18S E 352531 N 4425048
A memorable Lincoln quote can be found at the Former York Count Court House on a Civil War memorial. There are numerous war memorial plaques along the pillars, besides this one.
Waymark Code: WMA8DM
Location: Pennsylvania, United States
Date Posted: 12/01/2010
Published By:Groundspeak Premium Member TheBeanTeam
Views: 4

This entire court house serves as a memorial and is dedicated to Civil War veterans. The courthouse also had a part in the Civil War, being occupied by Confederate forces. It is only fitting that a Lincoln quote should serve as an immortal quote to be etched in stone, or in this case, bronze.

This courthouse was erected in 1898, thirty-three years after the Civil War and dedicated to those veterans thirty-nine years later in 1937. There is a plaque underneath the last column on the right, attached to the support. The plaque reads:

Dedicated in the Memory
Of Our Fathers
Grand Army of The
By the Penna. Dept.
Daughters of the Union
Veterans of the Civil War
1861 to 1865
At the 25th Convention
June 13, 1937

"Let us have faith that right
makes might and in that faith
let us to the end, dare to do
our duty as we understand it"
..............Abraham Lincoln

The following comes from a previous waymark about this site.

Within the huge pediment of this big stone block, grand structure is the town clock, at least it is for this part of the historic district. That is but one of the charms of the courthouse. In front is a neat a little black lion fountain, then as you ascend the stairs, you will notice a dozen or so war memorials in the form of long plaques, with lots of writing, attached to the bottom of every column support. The WW II marker had five parts alone to it. To the rear, near the entrances are also some other memorials attached to the front facade. This building itself was constructed as a Civil War memorial, or so says the first plaque as you walk up the stone stair. Also, there were plaques for every war from the Civil War to the present.

Besides the pediment, there are other Greek influences as well such as the six (6) twenty foot high columns, dentils under the pediment, and elaborate column supports. If you have an eye for such things, there is some frieze work to be had as well. I did note a cornerstone for 1957 and the inventory list marks 1957 as when expansion was done, but the court house was erected at the end of the 19th century, so, don't be fooled by the disparity.

This court house is at 28 E. Market St., however the courthouse when Googled lists it across the street, at the next road at 45 North George Street. I could not for the life of me reconcile this fact until I realized that this was the old courthouse which has been turned into the York Administrative Building, and, the new court house is located at the George Street address.

Perhaps one of the reasons the courthouse is a Civil War memorial can be found in an excerpt I discovered from a blog about York, PA: The courthouse that stood during the [Civil War] occupation was replaced in 1898; however, the columns, pediment, and cupola from the earlier courthouse remain. General Early [Union] made the courthouse his headquarters during the occupation, and it was in the courtroom that Early made a list of demands upon the citizens of York. SOURCE

This structure is also a contributing structure to the York Historic District. The York Historic District Nomination and Inventory form is unique in that there are no narratives for the contributing structures, only abbreviations for basic information in various columns next to each individual listing. The form has all the contributing structures in a list, alphabetized by street name. Therefore, all descriptions will be done by waymarker observation or other internet resources. The nomination form was sent to me via electronic mail in PDF form by Christine H. Messing from the NR/NHL Archives (Christine_H_Messing@contractor.nps.gov). To read portions of the original nomination document without narratives go HERE. I did manage to learn from the brief mention of this site the court house is an example of Classic Revival architecture, has three floors, composed of brick and was constructed in 1898.

York County Administrative Building 28 E. Market St., York, PA, 17401

Website: [Web Link]

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