Skip to content
Home » US States » V-Z » Virginia » Suffolk


Suffolk is named for the City of Suffolk in England, United Kingdom.


Surrounding County Courthouses: 

N – Newport News

E – Portsmouth and Chesapeake

S – Camden County, North Carolina and Gates County, North Carolina

W – Southampton County and Isle of Wight County



County Created:  1646                                      Location in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

County Seat :         

Jarnigan’s 1646 – 1750

Suffolk       1750 – 1910

Independent City

City Created:       1910

Suffolk       1910 – present


Courthouse – Suffolk


Location:  150 North Main Street / Bank Street

Built:  1996 – 1998

Style:  Modern

Architect:  Moseley Harris & McClintock

Contractor:  Shirley Construction Corporation


Description:  The building faces west and is a three story red colored brick, concrete and glass structure. The building is located in the center od Suffolk. The west front has a high projecting section at the northwest corner with three rectangular openings with recessed glass panels and doorways on the first story. The third story is recessed with square windows and flat roof line. The building houses the County Circuit Court, County General District Court and County Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court of the 5th Judicial Circuit. The building is named as the Mills E Godwin Jr. Courts Building. 


See:  The 5th Judicial Circuit includes Franklin, Isle of Wight County and Southampton County.


Old Nansemond County Courthouse – Suffolk



Location:  524 North Main Street / Constance Way

Built:  1838 – 1840

Style:  Greek Revival

Architect:  Mills Riddick

Contractor:  Mills Riddick


Description:  The building faces west and is a two story red colored brick structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Suffolk. The west front has a large porch with four high white colored columns. The recessed entrance is framed with white colored wood. The roof is hipped. The building served as the Nansemond County Courthouse until 1972 and as the Suffolk City Courthouse from 1910 to 1998. An addition was added in the 1909. The architect was John Keven Peebles. The building was converted to the Visitor Center in 2010. The architect was Wiley & Wilson and the contractor was E T Gresham Company, Inc.


History:  The county of Nansemond was created in 1646 and Jarnigan’s ( Cohoon’s Bridge ) was selected as the county seat. In 1750, the county seat was moved to Suffolk. The first courthouse was built in 1755 and burned in 1779. The second courthouse was built in 1779 and burned in 1837. The builder of the courthouse in 1838 is presumed to have been Mills Riddick who designed and built the Riddick House in 1837. The third courthouse was built in 1838 to 1840 and is still standing. Suffolk became an independent city in 1910 and Nansemond became an independent county in 1972 and merged with Suffolk in 1974. The fourth and present courthouse was constructed in 1996 to 1998.



Courthouse – Suffolk













Old Nansemond County Courthouse – Suffolk











Photos taken 2013