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Griggs County


Griggs County is named for Alexander Griggs, a Red River steamboat captain and pioneer of Grand Forks.


Surrounding County Courthouses: 

N – Nelson County 

E – Steele County

S – Barnes County

W – Stutsman County, Foster County and Eddy County

Created:  February 18, 1881                  Map of North Dakota highlighting Griggs County

County Seat:  

Cooperstown  1881 – present


Old County Courthouse – Cooperstown


Location:  808 Rollin Avenue Southwest / 9th Street Southeast                          

Built:  1884 – 1885

Style:  High Victorian Gothic

Architect:  F B Edwards

Contractor:  Alexander Moffat of Sanborn, North Dakota and J C Drake of Valley City


Description:  The building faces north and is a two story dark red colored brick and stone structure. The building is located on spacious grounds on the north side of the second courthouse, in the center of Cooperstown. The building is 91 feet by 48 feet and has a raised basement. There is a stone foundation and the stair tower in the northeast corner has a pyramidal roof surmounted by an ornate weathervane. Below the second story windows are rectangular recessions of white colored brick centered with lozenge shaped patterns of black colored brick. The building has a brick chimney. In the interior, the first story hallway has a ten foot ceiling of ornamental stamped metal along the wall and ceiling. The covering also extends down the walls to the wainscoting, which, along with the hall doors, was grained at the time of construction in imitation of oak and black walnut. The oak floor of the hallway was later covered with vinyl tile, but in a reversal of the process, the original inlaid tile in some of the adjoining offices has been replaced by hardwood flooring. Wood stairs on the northeast side and at the rear ascend to the second story. The former courtroom is located on the second story. The original predominance of highly varnished wood, is still maintained in the seventy-eight captain’s chairs used as public seating; louvered interior shutters for the fourteen windows; a lawyer’s railing with turned balusters and crested, cross-rail gates; a paneled judge’s bench; and five panel doors with grooved casings and corner blocks. An addition was constructed by Wells-Denbrook of Grand Forks on the southwest corner in 1960.


Note:  The courthouse is one of North Dakota’s oldest public buildings.  A J Codding of Valley City was responsible for the plaster work. Sand for mortar was brought in from Bald Hill Creek southeast of town, and brick was imported from Brainerd, Minnesota. Vault doors for the completed building were obtained from the Detroit Safe Company, and the S I Pope Company, Chicago, installed the steam heating system.


See:  National Register of Historic Places – Griggs County Courthouse


County Courthouse – Cooperstown



Location:  808 Odegard Avenue Southwest / 9th Street Southeast                          

Built:  2013 – 2015

Style:  Modern

Architect:  Kraft Architects, Inc. of Shakopee, Minnesota

Contractor:  Construction Engineers.


Description:  The building faces south and is a one story gray colored brick and concrete structure. The building is located on spacious landscaped grounds in the center of Cooperstown. The front of the building has a central section with vertical dividers between the glass windows rising to a peaked roof. On the east and west sides are lower wings. The roof is hipped. In the interior is a wide lobby along the south side of the center section.The County District Court courtroom is located on the north side of the lobby and has a high ceiling and small windows along the top of the north wall. The building houses the County District Court of the Southeast Judicial District.


See:  The Southeast Judicial District includes Barnes CountyDickey County, Eddy County, Foster County, Kidder County, LaMoure CountyLogan CountyMcIntosh County, Ransom CountyRichland County, Sargent CountyStutsman County and Wells County.


History:  The county was created in 1881 and Cooperstown was selected as the County seat. The first courthouse was built in 1884 to 1885 at a cost of  $20,980 and is still standing. The second and present courthouse was constructed in 2013 to 2015.



Old County Courthouse – Cooperstown



























Old fire hose



Former County District Court courtroom







Former courtroom in 2024















County Courthouse – Cooperstown



















County Distrct Court courtroom











Photos taken 2006, 2008, 2010, 2023 and 2024