Polk County

US States / A-G / Florida / Polk County

Polk County is named for James K Polk, who was the eleventh President of the United States of America.


Surrounding County  Courthouses: 

– Sumter CountyLake County and Orange County

E – Osceola County

S – Highlands County and Hardee County

W – Hillsborough County and Pasco County


Created:  February 8, 1861                    Map of Florida highlighting Polk County

County Seat:

Fort Blount  1861 – 1867

Bartow         1867 – present


County Courthouse – Bartow


Location:  255 North Broadway Avenue / West Church Street

Built:  1986 – 1987

Style:  Modern

Architect:  W Wade Setlife & Associates

Contractor:  Bartow-Malow Company


Description: The building faces north and is a ten story concrete and glass structure. The building is located in the center of Bartow. There is a central tower with square lines. On the east and west are low three story Japanese style wings with arcades and green colored tile roofs.


Old County Courthouse – Bartow




Location:  100 East Main Street / North Broadway Avenue

Built:  1908 – 1909

Style:  Classical Revival

Architect:  Edward Columbus Hosford of Atlanta, Georgia

Contractor:  Mutual Construction Company of Louisville, Kentucky


Description: The building faces south and is a two story buff colored brick, stone and concrete structure. The rectangular shaped building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Bartow to the east of the courthouse and  has a high portico on the south front with four large columns rising to a pediment at the roof line. On either side of the portico are square brick towers with silver colored domes. In the center of the building is a large round dome with clock and silver colored roof and at the top is a small silver colored cupola. In the interior the rotunda is circumscribed with a series of plaster moldings below the skylight. Below the moldings were a frieze of swag, double swag, and tassel; eight ribbon and bow ovals surrounded electric light fixtures on the upper level. The tile is white colored with patterns in terra cotta, light green, grey, and tan. The stair stringers and noses are marble. The brass stair rail is set on cast iron in a modified fret geometric pattern. The old historic courtroom is located on the east side of the second story and a large courtroom is located in the west wing on the second story. The east and west wings were added in 1926. 


See:  The architect, Edward Columbus Hosford of Atlanta, Georgia..


See: The contractor, Mutual Construction Company of Louisville, Kentucky, constructed courthouses in Baker CountyJefferson County, Lafayette County and Pasco County; and in Georgia in Harris County


See:  The courthouse was used as a model for the smaller courthouse built in Citrus County


See:  National Register of Historic Places – Polk County Courthouse


See:  The 10th Judicial District includes Hardee County and Highlands County.


History:  The county was created in 1861 and Fort Blount was selected as the county seat. The name of the county seat was changed to Bartow in 1867 and the first courthouse was erected on the Courthouse Square. The second courthouse was built by J H Thompson in 1884. The third courthouse was constructed in 1908 to 1909 and is still standing. The fourth and present courthouse was constructed in 1986 to 1987.


County Administration Building – Bartow




Location:  330 West Church Street / North Miller Avenue

Built:  1989 – 1990

Style:  Modern

Architect:  Straughn-Furr Associates

Contractor:  Scandia, Inc.


Description: The building faces south and is a four story concrete and glass structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Bartow to the north of the courthouse. The south front has a large portico supported by four columns and rising to a high peak above the roof line. On the first story is a  one story portico at the entrance. The building rises in tiers.  The roof line is flat.


See:  Located in the county is the Court of Appeal – Second Judicial District -  Lakeland.




County Courthouse – Bartow













Old County Courthouse – Bartow

















































County Administration Building – Bartow







Photos taken 2009 and 2018