South Carolina Department of Archives and History
National Register Properties in South Carolina

Sumter County Courthouse, Sumter County (141 North Main St., Sumter)
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The Sumter County Courthouse was one of nine courthouses designed William Augustus Edwards, a prominent South Carolina architect of the early twentieth century. In 1905 seeking to replace the original 1821 courthouse Sumter County contracted with Edwards to design the new building. The building that Edwards designed for Sumter County was an I-plan courthouse, set in the center of a deep open block that ran all the way from Main to Harvin Street. The I-plan was a popular design for courthouses all over country at the end of the nineteenth century and the beginning of the twentieth century. Edwards displayed a strong Beaux-Arts sensibility, however, by setting his courthouse with its long axis parallel to Main Street and putting the recessed entrance portico in the center of the long side. This creates the impression from Main Street that the building is really more of a rectangle with a notch carved out for the entrance. This impression has been much reinforced by the actual filling in of the rear notch in the early 1960s during a remodeling and enlargement of the building, so that it now actually has rectangular footprint. Listed in the National Register June 16, 2004.

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