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Jefferson County

Jefferson County is named for Thomas Jefferson, who was President of the United States from 1801 to 1809.


Surrounding County Courthouses: 

N – Clallam CountySan Juan County and Island County

E – Island County and Kitsap County

S – Mason County and Grays Harbor County

W – Pacific Ocean


Created:  December 22, 1852                Map of Washington highlighting Jefferson County

County Seat: 

Port Townsend  1852 – present


County Courthouse – Port Townsend 


Location:  1820 Jefferson Street / Cass Street

Built:  1890 – 1892

Style:  Romanesque

Architect:  Willis A. Ritchie

Contractor:  John Rigby and C P Wakeman


Description:  The building  faces south and is a three story stone and dark red colored brick and sandstone structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds on a hill overlooking the center of Port Townsend. On the south front is a large arched entrance on the first story. The west side also has a recessed arched entrance. There is a large square brick clock tower which rises 143 feet on the southeast corner. On the other corners are round towers with dome roofs. The roof is hipped with gable ends. The base of the building is grey colored stone. In the interior, the County Superior Court courtroom on the third story is a massive room decorated with handcarved solid oak panelling. The building houses the County Superior Court and the County District Court.


Note:  During construction eleven stone-cutters and twelve mason were utilized. The building is the one of the oldest courthouses in Washington. The clock was shipped around Cape Horn and has been in service for over seventy-six years.


See:  The architect Willis A. Ritchie also designed the courthouse in Spokane County.


See:  National Register of Historic Places – Jefferson County Courthouse


History:  The county was created in 1852 and Port Townsend was selected as county seat. The county rented premises. The first courthouse was built in 1874. The second and present courthouse was constructed in 1890 to 1892 at a cost of $15,000.



County Courthouse – Port Townsend































County District Court courthouse







County Superior Court courtroom







Photos taken 2006 and 2016