Historic Leon County Courthouse
Click for a larger view.
| Leon County was created in 1824 and
named for Ponce de Leon, the Spanish "discoverer" of Florida. The county seat is
also the state's capital, Tallahassee. This site was selected because it is approximately
midway between what were then the state's two principal settlements, Pensacola and St.
Augustine. The name is Creek for "old town." A village existed here as early as
the time of DeSoto, whose campsite has been located near the Capitol, and the Spanish
mission of San Luis stood not far from the present site of Florida State University.
Tallahassee is the only Confederate capital east of the Mississippi not to have been
captured by Union forces, though the Natural Bridge battlefield commemorates one desultory
effort to do so.
A two-story brick courthouse was built in 1832-3 near present-day Park and Monroe Streets. The basement doubled as "William Neil's Male Academy." This was replaced in 1882 with a larger structure at Monroe and Jefferson Streets; this building in turn was demolished in 1985. The third courthouse was constructed in 1930 and is still standing.
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Page Updated 10/17/2003