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Shelburne County

Shelburne County is named for Lord Shelburne, who was the British Prime Minister from 1782 to 1783.


County Created  :  1784

County Seat:  

Shelburne  1784 – present


Courthouse – Shelburne


Location:  136 Hammond Street / John Street

Built:  1902 – 1903

Style:  Federal / Classical Revival

Architect:  Harris S Tremaine of Halifax

Contractor:  Unknown


Description:  The building faces west and is a two story red coloured wood, brick and concrete structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds in the centre of the cityThe building is a rectangular shape with flat roof line. The east side is the original wood three story structure. The west front has slightly projecting sections and is a 1960’s two story red coloured brick addition. The courtroom is located on the second story


Note:  The first court was held in a rented house in the centre of the town in 1784. The first courthouse was built in 1849 at the corner of King Street and Mowat Street. The second and present courthouse was constructed in 1902 to 1903.


Note:  The courthouse was the scene of Nova Scotia’s last execution. In December 1937, Everett Farmer of Shelburne was hanged for the murder of his half-brother. A makeshift gallows was built in a room on the building’s second floor that was so small, it could barely accommodate the executioner and the half-dozen witnesses (the practice of holding public executions ended in the mid-1800s). A large beam was erected across the ceiling of the room to support the noose, which dangled over a hole cut in the floor. When a trapdoor covering the hole was sprung, the condemned man’s body dropped through and into the room below, breaking his neck.


Old Courthouse – Barrington Head



Location:  2401 Highway 3 ( Lighthouse Road )

Built:  1843 – 1844

Style:  Colonial

Architect:  Sherard Kenney.

Contractor:  Sherard Kenney.


Description:  The building faces west and is a two story white coloured wood frame structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds along Lighthouse Road to the north of the center of the town. The entrance is on the northwest front. The roof is hipped. In the 1890s extensive changes were made to the interior of the building, mainly on the second floor court room and chambers and two small one-storey additions made to the rear. Much of this work was done by local builder Wilson H. Crowell. In 1966-1967 a small two-storey addition was made to the south end of the building to provide space for social services offices.



N – Digby County and Queens County

E – Queens County and Atlantic Ocean

S – Atlantic Ocean

W – Yarmouth County



Courthouse – Shelburne



















Old Courthouse – Barrington Head











Photos taken 2018