The Bond County Courthouse is not only historical for what it is, but also has items of history and pictures of well-known persons.
When a new Abraham Lincoln portrait was unveiled on June 30, Jeff Leidel got to thinking what other interesting pictures or historical memorabilia are on the walls of the courthouse, which was built in 1884.
Circuit Court Judge John Knight reported the new Lincoln portrait will replace another one in the large courtroom.
A look around that second-floor courtroom reveals pictures of former judges Foss Meyer and John DeLaurenti, plus former attorney Tom Meyer, in addition to portraits of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. There is a signed Mort Kunstler print of General Grant entering Vicksburg during the Civil War, a large copy of the Declaration of Independence, and a picture of Jesse Burgess Thomas, a US. senator from 1818 to 1829 who was the presiding judge at the first Bond County Circuit Court on May 30, 1817.
Outside the courtroom is a book containing the circuit court records from June of 1817 at Hills Station in the Illinois Territory of Bond. Judge Burgess Thomas presided.
That book is enclosed in a frame. One can also see a drawing of Hill’s Fort.
The small upstairs courtroom also contains several pictures. There are two portraits of Abraham Lincoln, one of George Washington and a print of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. A photo of President Teddy Roosevelt is on the west wall.
On the first floor is a steel plaque dedicated to Shadrach Bond, the namesake of Bond County who was Illinois’ first governor. The state is celebrating its 200th birthday this year.
So Bond County residents, now you might be a little more familiar with your courthouse.