Thanks for the pictures

Published 10:46 pm Thursday, December 11, 2008

I would like to use this column as an opportunity to say, “Thank you” to all those that responded to my search for an old photograph of a past Chilton County Courthouse.

Several people responded with phone calls, and at least two people produced pictures of a courthouse that was built in the late 1800s but unfortunately burned and was replaced by a two-story brick building.

At least five buildings have served as courthouses for this county, including the existing one located on Second Avenue North. The first was a log cabin located (I believe) near what is now the Pinedale community of Clanton.

I had pictures of every one of these courthouses except the Victorian one built around 1896, which was the third building to serve as a courthouse for what is now Chilton County.

Several people share my opinion that this courthouse was the most beautiful of all the courthouses, and it’s too bad this building was lost in a fire. If my sources are correct, I believe this was a case of arson and the perpetrator apparently committed the crime over a court case.

I am no expert on history, but this has been an interesting experience for me. I was not looking for the pictures for my own benefit; I was assisting John Carroll of Fairview, who goes around the state taking and collecting new and old photographs of historic structures and other images that give us a glimpse of our treasured past.

He was thrilled to get a reproduction of an out-of-print postcard of this courthouse, which turned out beautifully.

This is going to sound tacky, but I cannot immediately remember the names of all those who contributed photos. Either way, you know who you are, and your efforts are appreciated.

– Scott Mims is the news editor for The Clanton Advertiser. His column appears each Friday. He can be reached at