• Historic photo of the first Reno County Courthouse, circa 1902

Old Court House Found Settling

Friday, February 27, 1925

Cracks Inside and Outside Are Occasioning Concern on Park of Officials.

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The appearance of a number of small cracks in both the inside and outside walls of the court house during the past 24 hours, due to the settling of the building is causing the county commissioners and other officials of the county considerable anxiety.

"The cracks began to appear yesterday afternoon," according to Frank Vincent, one of the commissioners, "and they have gradually been getting worse. The first cracks were seen along the edge of the ceiling and the east wall of the treasurer's office. The center of the building seems to be settling away from the new addition on the east of the court house."

Appear in Outer Wall.

The south wall on the outside of the court house has a crack between the old wall and the wall of the new addition. There is another crack in the wall just east of the entrance on the north side of the building.

In the lobby on the main floor of the court house there is quite a large crack in the tile floor between the door of the register of deeds office to the door of the probate judge's office. Cracks in the walls have appeared today in the commissioners office, the vault in the county clerk's office, upstairs in the lobby between the jury rooms, and in various other parts of the building.

Cannot Close Door.

The building has settled to such an extent that one of the doors in Judge W.G. Fairchild's office cannot be closed today.

J.S. Rigss, a local architact, made an examination of the foundations of the buildings for the county commissioners this morning but did not find any evidence of their having settled. Some of the surveyors connected with the county engineer's office took a number of readings of the elevation at the base of the building from 11:30 o'clock this morning until about 2 o'clock this afternoon, but found no evidence of the ground having settled any in that vicinity.

Building Inadequate.

The court house is now 25 years old and it has been inadequate for the needs of the county for a number of years. An addition was built on the east end of the building several years ago but the county officers are still cramped for room. One of the large west rooms had to be converted into a vault recently because the former vault used by the register of deeds was full.