firm active: 1907-1921

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Woodbury County Court House
William L. Steele, architect
Purcell and Elmslie, associated architects
Sioux City, Iowa  1915/1916

This building is on the National Register of Historic Places (Iowa--Woodbury County; added December 18, 1973).

IMPORTANT NEWS: As of June 2006 [and January 1, 2015], there was serious water damage to the foundations of the building, including standing water in the basement, with resulting harm to rebar, concrete, and structural supports of load bearing walls. The National Historic Landmarks Program had a web page up that determined the building to be "threatened," but their site has been reorganized (I tend toward another, less complimentary word) and the link is non-responsive as of September 25, 2015. [National Historic Landmarks Program page]


Construction photo (7/11/1917)


Front view circa 1918  

Rear view, circa 1918

Interior, lobby, circa 1918

Interior, mezzanine balcony, circa 1918

Office tower, 1981

Detail, tower

Detail, molding course and capital

Detail, terracotta beneath eave
Detail, eagle

Figural group
Alphonso Ianelli, sculptor

Detail, figural group

Alphonso Ianelli, sculptor

Bison figure over receiving dock

Detail, main lobby balcony

Column detail, second floor lobby

Column detail, first floor lobby

Clock, lobby

Fountain mosaic
Sourece: Woodbury County Court House site

Fountain mosaic

Source: Woodbury County Court House site

Mural cartoon, by John W. Norton

96 images are available from the UMedia Digital Archive at the University of Minnesota Libraries.

Drawings (19 images)

Terracotta and Sculpture, circa 1910s (18 images)

Exterior, archival circa 1910s
(31 images)

Interior, archival circa 1910s
(25 images)

Other (3 images)

Other References

Illustrations of this building appear on page 580 and page 581 of "George Grant Elmslie and the Chicago Scene," by Talbot Hamlin in Pencil Points (September, 1941)

Illustrations of this building appear in the catalog for the "Purcell & Elmslie, Architects" exhibition at the Walker Art Center in 1953.


Other Resources

24 images (22 b&w, 2 color) are available from the Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record at Library of Congress.  This link goes to a summary page on my server, with a link to the HABS site for download of higher resolution versions of the thumbnails. 

Source: Woodbury County Court House site

Source: Woodbury County Court House site

Source: Woodbury County Court House site

Source: Woodbury County Court House site



research courtesy mark hammons