Image courtesy Gary Revier collection.

The currently-used 1891-era Redwood County Courthouse is set to start being demolished on or about Aug. 20. As is scheduled right now, barring no major obstacles, remaining court and county attorney staff will move to the new courthouse starting on August 1.

The first Redwood County Courthouse was built of wood in 1873. For what it’s worth, that’s the courthouse Pa Ingalls went to on June 26, 1874 to officially declare a Declaration of Intent for 172 acres of land on the banks of Plum Creek.

The current courthouse was built in 1891. Studies in recent years have determined the building is basically totaled — it would cost more to get it up to current code than the structure itself is worth. Because of modifications over the decades — especially a large addition in the mid-1960s — the courthouse is no longer eligible for official historic status, with all the remodeling grants that would be available for it.

Much of the county staff that worked in the courthouse has been moved to the Redwood County Government Center on S. Mill Street, or to the annex across the street to the east of the current courthouse. The new $10 million Redwood County Justice Center is set to be open

The demolition is slated to begin on or around August 20.  These dates may certainly change given any sort of obstacle arises.  FYI, the public will not have access to the new facility until probably sometime mid-September, due to the installation of the sidewalks and  handicap accessibility. The demolition of the old courthouse has to be completed, and the complete backfill of that area, and parking lot preparation has to occur before any public entrance points are constructed and open to the public.