Trails to the Past-ND-Traill Co-courthouse




Courthouse History

Present day Courthouse in Hillsboro

February 23, 1875  Traill County was organized by an Act of the Territorial Legislature of Dakota Territory. Governor Howard appointed Asa H. Morgan, Jonas Ostland and John Brown as the first Traill County Commissioners.

April 5, 1875  First meeting of the Board of County Commissioners. Upon motion duly made and carried the county seat was located in Caledonia. Meetings were held in a one story, two room frame building located on a one acre tract of land in the SE 1/4 of Caledonia Township. The building cost $150.

November 1878  Legal voters were asked to move the county seat  to Mayville. Mayville lost by a vote of 287 to 238.
October 1879 The Commissioners accepted the lowest bid to build a two story log building measuring 12 x 16 to house the Jail at a cost of $389 and took 40 days to complete.

January 1880 The County Commissioners accepted a bid of $2100 to construct a new courthouse in Caledonia. The building was completed that fall.

April 1883  Voting once again to move the county seat to Mayville. The votes were thrown out by ruling of the Judge due to the fact that a great many more votes were cast than there were legal voters, including votes cast by traveling salesmen and residents whose permanent address was the local cemetery.

November 1890  Voters of Traill County voted to move the county seat to Hillsboro. Votes cast for Hillsboro 1291; Caledonia 218; Mayville 206; and Buxton 114.

March 1891  All records of Traill County were removed from Caledonia and placed in Hillsboro where they remain today.

June 1894  The first courthouse in Hillsboro was paid for by the citizens of Hillsboro, but proved to be too small a few years later. The original building was sold for $250 and was moved from the site.
June 20, 1906  The cornerstone of the present building was laid. The cost of the new building was $60,000.

June 14, 1907 Dedication of the present courthouse was held.

On November 25, 1980 By order of the Secretary of Interior, the Traill County Courthouse was named to the National Register of Historical Places.


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