Clarendon County Courthouse Getting Needed Upgrades

5:55 PM, Dec 6, 2013   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +

Manning, SC (WLTX) -- The courthouse in Clarendon County is getting old, and has seen some wear and tear over the years.

But crews are working to keep the historical significance of the building while bringing it into the 21st century.

The courthouse sits right in the middle of Manning's historic downtown, and has for over a century since being built in 1909.

Now it's in need of some upgrades, including improvements to its outer shell.

The new work will fix cracks in the building's exterior, and disability compliance issues are being addressed bringing the old structure new life. 

But it's the inside where Clarendon County Administrator David Epperson said most of the $5.5 million renovations will be done, meeting new state security standards.

"We've been required to upgrade that security to certain standards," Epperson said, adding that another factor is the fact that the building is over a century old.

A demolition company is bringing the building up to current specifications before the full project begins, Epperson said.

"The last major renovation was done in 1969, so it was due for some major overhaul and renovations," he said.

Clarendon County Archivist Nancy Cave said the building is the literal center-spot of the entire town.

As county archivist, part of her job is tracking the history of the county. According to Cave, the County Courthouse has been home to significant legal proceedings as well. 

"The most significant, no doubt is Brown v. Board of Education," Cave said, "but in Clarendon County, it was known as Briggs v. Elliot."

Cave said Briggs v. Elliot later became part of the monumental U.S. Supreme Court case, Brown v. Board of Education.

By the end of the construction, the courthouse may look a little different, but it will still be the 'centerpiece' of Clarendon County.  

"We are cognizant of the needs of the community, and we are trying to meet those needs, but also preserving the historic nature of the county," Epperson said.

Epperson said construction is scheduled to begin in January. 

Key offices have been moved to other locations.

Most Watched Videos