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Douglas County

Douglas County is named after Stephen Arnold Douglas, a United States Senator, statesman, and leader of the Democratic Party.


Surrounding County Courthouses: 

N – Jefferson County and Leavenworth County

E – Levenworth County and Johnson County

S – Franklin County

W – Osage County and Shawnee County


Created:  August 30, 1855                     Map of Kansas highlighting Douglas County

County Seat:

Lecompton  1855 – 1858

Lawrence    1858 – present


County Courthouse – Lawrence 


Location:  1100 Massachusetts Street / East 11th Street

Built:  1903 – 1904

Style:  Richardsonian Romanesque

Architect:  John G Haskell and Frederick C Gunn

Contractor:  Cuthbert and Sargent of Topeka


Description:  The building faces west and is a three story white colored limestone and concrete structure. The building is located on spacious landscaped grounds in the center of Lawrence. The building is rectangular in shape with slight irregularities caused by the clock tower, the stair tower, the gable ends and the entrance features. The building has a raised basement. The exterior walls are constructed of rough-hewn Cottonwood limestone laid in regular courses. A narrow band of smooth cut limestone runs entirely around the building at the first floor sill. A wide band of smooth cut limestone wraps entirely around the building at the first floor lintels. The central west entrance has a large stone arch. On the north is a high square stone clock tower with steep roof. On the southwest corner is a round tower with conical roof. The building projects on the southwest and south rising to a high dormer. The base of the building is course stone. In the interior there is a central lobby, which has a round opening to a similar lobby on the second story. A glass dome lets light into the upper lobby space from dormer windows in the attic. The grand double height historic County District Court courtroom is located on the south side of the second story. The courtroom has dark wood fixtures, chandeliers and small stained glass windows near the ceiling. 


See:  The architect, John G Haskell, also designed courthouses in Chase County and McPherson County.


See:  National Register of Historic Places – Douglas County Courthouse


County Judicial and Law Enforcement Center – Lawrence 



Location:  111 East 11th Street / New Hampshire St.

Built:  1975 – 1976

Style:  Modern

Architect:  Peters-Williams-Kubota

Contractor:  B A Green Construction Company


Description: The building faces west and is a two story white colored concrete and glass structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Lawrence on the east side of the courthouse. The west front is curved with concrete pillars along the first story and recessed entrance. On the second story are recessed horizontal windows. The north side projects from the main building. The roof line is flat. In the interior, there are nine County District Court courtrooms. The building houses the County District Court of the 7th Judicial District. The building was remodeled in 2003. The architect was Gould Evans Associates and the contractor was Champion Builders Inc.


History:  The county was created in 1855 and Lecompton was selected as the county seat. In 1858, the county seat was moved to Lawrence and the court met at several locations in Lawrence. The first courthouse was the City Hall constructed in 1869 at a cost of $32,000. The second and present courthouse was constructed in 1903 to 1904. The Judicial Center was constructed in 1975 to 1976.



County Courthouse – Lawrence

























County District Court courtroom

















County Judicial and Law Enforcement Center









County District Court courtroom









County District Court courtroom











Photos taken 2010 and 2023