Loudon County Courthouse: Fire damages one of East Tennessee’s most historic buildings

Local News

LOUDON, Tenn. (WATE) – The fire at the Loudon County Courthouse on Tuesday night damaged a historic building that has been in use for 147 years.

The Loudon County Courthouse was built in 1872 by J. Wesley and Ira Napolean Clarke of Sweetwater for a cost of $14,200, according to the Loudon County TNGenWeb Project.

That was just two years after the county was created. Loudon County was established on June 2, 1870, from portions of Roane, Monroe, and Blount Counties. On Sept. 5, 1870, the county court was organized, and the Loudon (formerly Blair’s Ferry) town square was donated as the site for the courthouse, according to the Tennessee Encyclopedia

The contract for construction was awarded in early 1871, and the building was completed and ready for occupancy in September 1872. 

On Nov. 24, 1883, Andy Taylor was hanged on the courthouse lawn for the murder of Hamilton County Sheriff W. T. Cale and Deputy J.J. Conway in Philadelphia, Tenn., in the only public hanging in Loudon County, according to the TNGenWeb Project website. 

A time capsule was buried on the courthouse lawn in 1970 and with the opening set for 2020.

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