Grand Traverse County

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Grand Traverse

Grand Traverse County is named for the French phrase “grande traverse” meaning “long crossing”.


Surrounding County Courthouses: 

N – Leelanau County and Antrim County

E – Kalkaska County

S – Wexford County

 Benzie County


Created:  April 7, 1851                           Map of Michigan highlighting Grand Traverse County

County Seat:

Traverse City  1851 – present


County Courthouse – Traverse City  


Location:  328 Washington Street / Court Street

Built:  1898 – 1900

Style:  Romanesque Revival

Architect:  Rush, Bowman and Rush of Grand Rapids and Casscus M Pratt

Contractor:  J E Gibson of Logansport, Indiana


Description:  The building faces north and is a two story red colored sandstone  structure. The building has a large arch on the first story with recessed door. On the center of the roof rises a high square red colored brick clock tower. The superintendent during construction was Thomas Moulton.


Note:  Empire Stites of Kalkaska had been the lowest bidder, but he did not appear with the bond required by the bidding notice and therefore the second lowest bid, Mr. Gibson, with appropriate bond in hand, was accepted.  The total indicated by Gibson for construction was $28,749 which would allow the balance of the funds to be utilized for subsequent landscaping – a very pleasant surprise for the Supervisors and the general populace.


County City Governmental Center – Traverse City  




Location:  400 Boardman Avenue / Webster Street

Built:  1978 – 1979

Style:  Modern

Architect:  Cornwell-Callahan-Holt, Inc.

Contractor:  Jeffress-Dyer, Inc.


Description:  The building faces east and is a three story concrete and glass structure. The east front has a central entrance. The second story has vertical dividers at the windows. The third story has horizontal windows. The roof line is flat. The building is named as the Governmental Center and houses the City of Traverse City and Grand Traverse offices. The building is located on the south side of the courthouse.


See:  Michigan’s County Courthouses by John Fedynsky






















Photos taken 2008