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Etowah County


Etowah County is named for the Etowah Indian Mounds, which is a Muskogee Native American word derived from “italwa” meaning “town”.


Surrounding County Courthouses: 

N – Marshall County and DeKalb County

E – Cherokee County

S – Calhoun County and Saint Clair County

W – Blount County


Created:  December 7, 1866                                                      Map of Alabama highlighting Etowah County

County Seat:

Gadsden  1866 – present


County Courthouse – Gadsden


Location:  801 Forest Avenue / South 8th Street

Built:  1949 – 1950

Style:  Federal

Architect:  Paul W Hofferbert

Contractor:  J F Holley


Description:  The building  faces north and is a four story gray colored limestone structure. The rectangular shaped building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Gadsden. On the west side is a rectangular shaped wing and on the east side is a smaller wing. The north front has a projecting stone canopy at the central entrance rising two stories. Behind, the central section rises to a peaked roof with large vertical window on the third and fourth stories. The east and west project from the main building. In the interior, the entrance lobby rises two stories. The building houses the County Probate Court. On the west side is an addition constructed in 1964. The architect was Paul W Hofferbert and Hugh W Ellis and the contractor was Roberts Brothers Company. The building was renovated in 2002. The architect was McElrath & Oliver Architects, PC and the contractor was Dawson Building Contractors, Inc.


County Judicial Building – Gadsden



Location:  800 Forest Avenue / North 8th Street

Built:  1999 – 2000

Style:  Modern

Architect:  2WR / Architects, Inc.

Contractor:  Doster Construction Company Inc. and Barclay Hayes General Contractor Inc.


Description:  The building  faces south and is a three story gray colored concrete and glass structure. The square shaped building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Gadsden across from the courthouse. The central section is curved with large recessed windows and recessed entrance on the first story. The east and west wings project south from the main building. The roof is slopped. In the interior, the hallways have white colored columns. There are two County District Court courtrooms on the first story and four County Circuit Court courtrooms on the second story. The building houses the County Circuit Court of the 16th Judicial Circuit and the County District Court. 


History:  Blaine County was created in 1866 and Gadsden was selected as the county seat. The county name was changed to Etowah County in 1868. The county first met in the First Baptist Church at Fifth Street and Broad Street. The first courthouse was built by Issac P Moragne in 1869 to 1871 in Gadsden at a cost of $12,990. The second courthouse was designed by John A Scott and constructed by Gwin, Hicks & Lane in 1890 to 1891. The third and present courthouse was constructed in 1949 to 1950. The County Judicial Building was constructed in 1999 to 2000.



County Courthouse – Gadsden
























Second County Courthouse 1890 plaque



County Judicial Building – Gadsden


















County Circuit Court courtroom











Photos taken 2010 and 2023