Junction Courthouse: Junction, UT
The Piute County Courthouse was erected in 1903 in south central Utah, surrounded by public lands and forests. Today the town of Junction has a population of under 200, down from a high of about 400 in the 1910s. In 1892 county residents, mostly ranchers and miners, voted against the construction of a courthouse in Junction. Ten years later, Junction resident, James Morrill, donated land and raised money and workers to construct the county courthouse. Morrill hired famous Utah architect Richard C. Watkins to design the building. The courthouse features a prominent four-story tower and reflects the Italianate and Second Empire architectural styles, both popular in the late nineteenth century. Unusual for a building of this era, much of the stone, adobe, and wood ornamentation was hand worked by locals.
The building served as the Piute County Courthouse until 1997, after which it became a private residence. Today, it is an eight-bedroom vacation rental. The offices, jail cell, and library have been converted to bedrooms and living spaces. The courtroom, however, retains much of its historic furniture. The Courthouse is next door to the one other building in the county listed in the National Register of Historic Places, the home of its backer, James Morrill.