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Friday, June 29, 2012

101 Places to See Before You're 12 - A Courthouse

A Courthouse

After leaving City Hall to visit our Elected Official's Office, we headed across the street to our County Courthouse.

The boys had visited the Courthouse before with their classes, but we had not all been together.  It was a quiet day in the Courthouse, but we took some time to walk through and see all that we could.

Our Courthouse was built in the 1870s by a local architecture firm.  It is in an asymetrical L shape to face two main streets in our town.  It was the first fireproof building in Indiana.

Again, excuse our helmet hair.  We were on a big bike ride.
We really liked the beautiful architecture.  These columns are replicated in many places throughout the building.  The boys thought they were super fancy.

The spiral staircases up to the 2nd and 3rd floors were real highlights. 
Brennan does not believe he has ever been on a spiral staircase before.
Thomas doesn't care for them because "you can't tell how much farther you have to go."

One of the local judges was out, but his administrator asked us if we'd like to step in the courtroom.
We got to see where the defender and prosectuor sit, the judges' "desk", where the "media" sit, and the jurors.  The boys were pretty impressed that a courtroom would be so "fancy".

We stopped by several offices as well, like the County Assessor's Office, County Treasurer, Marriage License Office, etc.  We realized a lot of officials work in the courthouse, and it was a pretty cool building to work in.

From the Book:
#75 - A Courthouse
The courthouse is usually the most impressive building in town - big Greek columns on the front, maybe a rotunda on top.  It has to look very serious because important things happen there - people get married, file legal documents, or go to trial.  With so many momentous events happening under its roof, a courthouse is a very dramatic place (that's probably why so many TV shows are based there).  Sign up for a courthouse tour and see lawyers and judges in action.  Observe jury selection, an arraignment (when people find out what charges have been brought against them), or even a trial.  Ask questions if you can't figure out what's going on.  You'll get a close-up view of the justice system in action, and you'll be really glad you're on the right side of the law.

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