The Hampshire County Courthouse
66 North High Street, Romney, WV
National Register of Historic Places
The Hampshire County Courthouse, built in 1922, is a two-story, rectangular structure made of yellow glazed brick with poured concrete accents, a style very typical for the period. It represents the only example of Neo-Classical Revival architecture within the Town of Romney. The leaded dome bell tower atop the building houses the original bell from the previous courthouse, built in 1837. Some notable interior features include beautiful wood and plaster paneling. A gracious staircase leads to the second story courtroom, which features a large domed ceiling encircled by squared rose medallions. For those interested in a detailed architectural description, please refer to the National Register Listing above.
In times past, this courthouse would have been one of the main hubs of social interaction for the community. In addition to comings and goings in connection with actual judicial proceedings, the courthouse served as a central gathering spot where political candidates would give speeches, militias would muster, and holidays would be observed, among other things.
With the construction of a Judicial Center in 2008 just one block south, the Courthouse now houses County Administrative Offices, including the Clerk's Office and Tax Assessor's Office, and is the repository for deeds, vital records, etc.
This building represents the fourth courthouse built to serve the people of Hampshire County. For additional information on this building, as well as the previous courthouses, we invite you to explore the links below:
- The History of the 1922 Hampshire County Courthouse, Robert Wolford, M.A., published in the Hampshire Review on September 24, 2003
- Community Defiled - The Sacking of the Hampshire County Courthouse, Romney, Virginia/West Virginia 1861 to 1866, Robert Wolford, M.A. - Coming soon
- Replacement of Cupola in 2013
- Pre-1762: Original Courthouse constructed, located south of Romney, adjoining what is now South Branch River Rd.
- 1762: New Courthouse constructed, a wooden structure at intersection of Gravel Lane and High Street ("Court Square")
- Early 1800s: New Courthouse constructed, brick Georgian-style building just east of present structure.
- 1833: New Greek Revival-style Courthouse built at site of current structure; this was a red brick building, with four massive columns, capped with a leaded dome.
- 1921-1922: Courthouse suffers substantial damage during remodeling, portions of Courthouse collapse, prompting construction of the current-day building.
- March 1922: Court proceedings resume in the new Courthouse.