This building is known as the second Pope County Courthouse. The first courthouse is a small log cabin that has been moved to the Pope County Museum.
According to G.C. Torguson in the 1942 his contributions to the statewide history project, the county rented space in the Lathrop and Kinney offices located on lot 7, block 24. That is the north side of 1st Ave SE between Franklin and 1st street – where the city parking lot is today – between the Village Inn and the Eye Clinic. (Lathrop and Kinney actually owned lot 8.)
The building was used as the courthouse until 1897, later used as a law office, then a feed store. Another source said it was used as Dr. Nils Holterman’s home after 1897, and that it burned down in 1905. Swanson Bakery was later located on that site.
We do know that the “3rd Courthouse” was built in 1879, on the site where the current “4th Courthouse” stands.
The current Courthouse was built in 1930.
BUT – I believe that the numbering system is off. It is clear that the log cabin was the first meeting place for county commissioners when they were forming the county, but notes on the Durkee Hotel state that the commissioners had offices and conducted official county business in THAT building until 1872, presumably when the building featured in this article was built.
There will be more on the Durkee Hotel next week.
I have another photograph – One I was going to save, but I will reveal it here… it was mixed in with the other Trenham photos and at first glance appears to be from the same photo shoot. But it is a different format, and closer examination reveals it to be from an earlier date. I will explain this photo in depth in a future post, but I add it here because it appears that the “Courthouse / Lathrop Office” is under construction.