Van Buren County

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Van Buren

Van Buren County is named for Martin Van Buren, who was a United States Secretary of State and later President of the United States.


Created:  October 29, 1829

County Seat:

Paw Paw  1837 – present


County Courthouse – Paw Paw  


Location:  212 Paw Paw Street / South Kalamazoo Street

Built:  1901 – 1903

Style:  Classical Revival

Architect:  Claire Allen of Jackson

Contractor:  George Rickman & Sons Company of Kalamazoo


Description:  The building faces north and is a three story sandstone structure. There is a large portico with three arches on the first story and four columns rising to the top of the second story with decorative pediment at the roof line. On the center of the roof is a large square clock tower with open sides. Atop the tower is a smaller square clock tower with high green copper roof. The Sheldon and Oradell Rupert memorial clock was installed in the tower in 1986. In 1974 an annex was constructed on the south side.


See:  The architect, Claire Allen of Jackson, also designed courthouses in Hillsdale County and Shiawassee County.


Old County Courthouse – Paw Paw  




Location:  111 East Michigan Avenue / South Gramps Street

Built:  1842 – 1845

Style:  Greek Revival

Architect:  Stafford Godfrey  and Rueben E Churchill

Contractor: Stafford Godfrey,  Rueben E Churchill and Henry W Rhodes.


Description:  The building faces south and is a two story wood fame structure. The south front has six white colored columns rising from pillars on the first story to a wide pediment at the roof line. Above the central wood framed entrance is a large arched windows. The roof is hipped. The building now serves as the City Hall.


Note:  The cost of construction was $2,410.


See:  Michigan’s County Courthouses by John Fedynsky



N – Allegan County

E – Kalamazoo County

S – Cass County and Berrien County

W – Barrien County and Lake Michigan
































Photos taken 2008