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    Alachua County Courthouse, 1884-1961 - 1920s Alachua County Courthouse, 1884-1961 - 1920s
In the 1920s and 1930s, about the time this photograph was taken, the citizens of Alachua County probably never dreamed that one day an attempt would be made to sell the Courthouse Square so it could become a parking lot. But that is what happened in the early 1950s.
As Gainesville's population swelled at the end of World War II, space was at a premium everywhere. According to an article from the "Gainesville Daily Sun" on July 15, 1947, the Courthouse was so crowded that the fire-proof vault for deed books and other public records was filled, and new materials could not be stored safely. On May 1, 1949, the newspaper reported that a new courthouse was "in the cards" for Gainesville and would likely be built on the site of the old Tebeau school. On May 29, 1953, the "Sun" reported that Gainesville attorney Joe C. Jenkins Jr. presented a plan to city and county officials for selling the Square for stores, parking lots, and a small park with the Confederate memorial in the center—an election was called to determine public sentiment, and the vote was 3 to 1 against the proposal. Years passed before a final decision was made to build a new courthouse and demolish the old. The first part of the new building was finished in 1958, standing next to the old structure. In 1961 the old building was demolished to make room for the construction of the second part, completed in 1962. The Tebeau site finally became the home of the Alachua County Courthouse in 2002.
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