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Gogebic County

Gogebic County is named for the Ojibwe word “agogebic” meaning “rock” and was named after Gogebic Lake, and also means “rocky dividing lake” or “place of dividing”.


Surrounding County and Canada Courthouses: 

N – Lake Superior, Ontario, Canada and Ontonagan County

E – Iron County

S – Iron CountyWisconsin and  Vilas County, Wisconsin

W – Iron County, Wisconsin


Created:  February 7, 1887                    Map of Michigan highlighting Gogebic County

County Seat:

Bessemer  1887 – present


County Courthouse – Bessemer 


Location:  200 North Moore Street / West Iron Street

Built:  1887 – 1888

Style:  Romanesque

Architect:  Charlton and Kuenzli

Contractor:  Herman Gundlach and John Wahlman.


Description:  The building faces east and is a two story red colored Jacobsville sandstone with white colored streaks structure. The rectangular shaped building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Bessemer. The building has a high square red colored sandstone tower. Farther up the tower are rectangular windows with transoms, surrounded by carved stone, and a porthole window. A dentillated cornice runs around the roof line of the building. The east entrance has an arch at the doorway. The second story windows are arched. On the south side is an arched covered entrance. The roof is hipped. The interior contains marble and woodwork. The County Circuit Court courtroom is located on the second story and has an arch shaped mural behind the judge’s bench depicting three female figures representing Law, Mercy and Justice. The building houses the County Circuit Court of the 32nd Judicial District, County District Court and County Probate Court. An addition was added in 1915. The architect was John Scott & Company of Detroit and the contractor was E E Grip. The building was renovated and an addition was constructed in 1974. The architect was Architectural Resources, Inc. and the contractor was P J Nickel Company.


Note:  The rock for the courthouse was quarried from a mountainside a half mile away.


See: The architect, John Scott & Company of Detroit, designed the courthouse in Wayne County. The contractors Wahlman and Grip built the courthouse in Houghton County and E E Grip built courthouses in Dickinson County and Ontonagon County.


See:  National register of Historic Places – Gogebic County Courthouse


See:  The 32nd Judicial District includes Ontonagon County.


History:  The county was created in 1887 and Bessemer was selected as the county seat. The first and present courthouse was constructed in 1887 to 1888 at a cost of $50,000. The cost of the 1974 addition was $650,000.


See:  Michigan’s County Courthouses by John Fedynsky



County Courthouse – Bessemer

















County Circuit Court courtroom













Photos taken 2007, 2010 and 2015