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Jay County

Jay County is named for John Jay, who was co-author of the Federalist Papers, Secretary of Foreign Affairs and first Chief Justice of the United States.


Surrounding County Courthouses: 

N – Wells County and Adams County

E – Mercer County, Ohio and Darke County, Ohio

S – Randolph County

W – Delaware County and Blackford County


Created:  February 7, 1835                                                        Map of Indiana highlighting Jay County

County Seat:

Portland  1836 – present


County Courthouse – Portland  


Location:  120 North Court Street / West Main Street

Built:  1915 – 1917

Style:  Second Renaissance Revival

Architect:  McLaughlin & Hulsken of Lima, Ohio

Contractor:  Dawson Construction Company of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania.


Description:  The building faces south and is a three story buff colored stone and concrete structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Portland. The exterior is limestone from Bedford, Indiana. The center of the south and north sections project from the main building and have stone framed entrances. Four columns rise from the second story to the top of the third story. There is horizontal limestone on the first story. A projecting cornice runs below the roofline. In the interior, the floor plan of the building is in the shape of a cross with an entrance at each of the four ends. There is a barrel-vaulted stairwell. The courtroom is located at the north end of the third story. The ceiling is dominated by vaulted stained glass skylight, which is framed by a fret in a key pattern and a coffered border. The entablature of the Ionic columns extends around the inside perimeter of the room, which marks off the main seating from the aisles. The frieze is decorated by small gold wreaths, and its cornice is ornamented by dentils and modillions. Between the entablature and the ceiling is a decorative semi-circular panel emblazoned with lions and foliage in bas relief. The building houses the County Circuit Court and the County Superior Court of the 15th Judicial District.


See:  National Register of Historic Places – Jay County Courthouse


See:  The 15th Judicial District includes Blackford County, Delaware CountyHenry County and Randolph County.


History:  The county was created in  1835 and Portland was designated as the county seat in 1836. The first court met at the home of Henry H Cuppy. The first courthouse was a log structure built by Robert Huey 1in 1837 at a cost of $123. The second courthouse was a brick structure built by Lewis N Byrum in 1842 at a cost of $1,750. The third courthouse was built in 1870 at a cost of $47,696. The fourth and present courthouse was constructed in 1915 to 1919 at a cost of $400,000.



County Courthouse – Portland









Photos taken 2008