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Daviess County Bicentennial Festival

County History

Daviess County was established on June 1, 1815 by taking land from Ohio County. The county is named for Major Joseph Hamilton Daveiss, the United States Attorney who unsuccessfully prosecuted Aaron Burr and died in the Battle of Tippecanoe on November 7, 1811. The county’s borders were altered in 1829 to form Hancock County, in 1830 to absorb an area surrounding Whitesville from Ohio county, in 1854 to cede land to create McLean County, and in 1860 to annex land from Henderson County.

Daviess County has had five Courthouses. The first was built soon after the county was established in 1815. The second Courthouse was built about 1819 or 1820 after the first one burned. The third Courthouse was built between 1858 and 1859. It was a brick 2-story building with a basement. It was burned by Confederate guerrillas on January 4, 1865. The fourth Courthouse replaced the burned one from July 6, 1868 to March 31, 1964. The current Courthouse was opened on April 1, 1964. The Morton Holbrook Judicial Center was built in 1991 and is the location of all judicial courtrooms while the Courthouse houses county government operations.