Benzie County Courthouse

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Benzie County Courthouse
Benzie County Courthouse.jpg
Building in 2013
Location 7157 Crystal Avenue
Beulah, Michigan
Built 1912
NRHP Reference # 96000611[1]
Significant dates
Added to NRHP June 3, 1996
Designated MSHS February 16, 1989

The Benzie County Courthouse is a historic former courthouse in Beulah, Michigan. It is a Michigan State Historic Site and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Built in 1912 as a hotel and recreation center, it later served as a courthouse until 1976.


The building was constructed in 1912.[2] It initially served as a recreation center and hotel, named the "The Grand".[2][3] In early 1916, Beulah won an election to become the county seat of Benzie County. The former hotel was converted into a courthouse; the first floor became county offices and the second floor became a courtroom and sheriff's residence. The jail, nicknamed "The County Root Cellar", was a simple concrete box connected to the courthouse's east end. The county courthouse moved into the Beulah location on June 1, 1916.[3]

The courthouse underwent extensive renovations from 1936 through 1938.[2] Benzie County rented the building until 1942 when it purchased the courthouse from Beulah for about $3000.[3] By 1975, the county had raised $615,000 through Federal revenue sharing and the sale of a farm to build a new courthouse.[4] Construction on the new facility began in January 1975, and the courthouse moved out of the historic building in 1976. Since its discontinuation as a courthouse, the building has served a number roles and tenants, including stores, restaurants, an inn, and condominiums.[2][4] The building was designated a Michigan State Historic Site on February 16, 1989, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places on June 3, 1996.[2][5]


The courthouse features elements of Mission Revival and Spanish Colonial Revival architecture. The building has a clapboard facade and is two stories tall with an attic.[2] The structure features Flemish gables at the sides and the slightly projecting front.[2][3] A two-story portico with square columns stretches across the front of the building.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ National Park Service (March 13, 2009). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Staff. "Benzie County Courthouse". State Historic Preservation Office. Michigan State Housing Development Authority. Retrieved October 29, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d Fedynsky 2010, p. 22.
  4. ^ a b Fedynsky 2010, p. 23.
  5. ^ "Weekly List of Actions Taken on Properties: 6/03/96 Through 6/07/96". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. Retrieved October 29, 2013.